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Christmas Traditions 

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By: Jessica Williams 

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Do you and/or your family have one?

If so, we would like to hear about it. 

If you’d like your Christmas Tradition printed in our upcoming Christmas issue email: [email protected]  Deadline is tomorrow (Tuesday Dec. 17) at 4PM. Don’t forget to include photos too!

Growing up, my family didn’t have any strong Christmas traditions. We weren’t wealthy either, by any means. But there was no denying we were all about Christmas. We decorated our front yard and home with endless strands of white lights, greenery, and ceramic Christmas villages that were painted and handmade by my grandmother who had a ceramic kiln in her basement for decades. (She lived next door). Light bulbs were placed inside them to make them look realistic, like houses where tiny people actually lived. Tiny figurine people were added outside the houses, along with light-posts and “snow”. Once they were all set up, it looked like a winter wonderland. My father (who was a Frito-Lay salesman) hand-carved and painted an entire life-sized nativity scene along with Mr. and Mrs. Claus, after working all day. My younger sister and I ran circles around them at night until we were dizzy. The characters sat under old oak trees, glowing in the direction of carefully placed spot lights.  So I suppose it was somewhat of a tradition for us to go overboard with family creativity at Christmas time. But it certainly made our childhood all that more magical this time of year.  

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When I was in 4th grade, my elementary school classroom was assigned Germany for Christmas, for a Christmas Around the World public school program (Other classrooms were assigned Denmark, France, etc). It was the first and last time I ever tasted cooked Duck. But in Germany, it’s a delightful Christmas feast item on the menu.  

Traditions (that are not our own) can seem odd or abnormal. But everyone has their own. Each of us are accustomed to a certain way of celebrating Christmas.

I asked a few of those here at the Hernando Sun what their traditions are: 

Megan Hussey (Reporter): 

“I would say that holiday movies form the core of my family’s holiday tradition. It simply isn’t Christmas Eve if I don’t watch White Christmas with Bing Crosby, Rosemary Clooney, Danny Kaye and Vera Ellen (she’s my favorite in the movie, as her character Judy is the bratty little sister in the family and that’s totally me:). I love the movie’s color, music and humor. Another must watch is The Bishop’s Wife with Cary Grant and Loretta Young–a beautiful Christmas movie, and staring at Cary Grant for two hours is never a bad thing. My family watches Home Alone and Miracle on 34th Street with my two little nephews, Theo and Freddy–then, when the kids go to bed, we give up and watch Die Hard!” 

Sue Quigley (Reporter) shares UK-English Christmas Traditions that she cherishes: 

“Christmas in the UK is celebrated with great relish by the English, Irish and Welsh, whereas the Scots focus more on New Year and its pagan rituals.

The English though  “take the biscuit” with one really weird Christmas tradition. They like to pull Christmas crackers and dress up in paper crowns at the start of the Christmas luncheon. In fact, it’s the highlight of their meal and dates back to mediaeval times.

A cracker is held between two people and pulled, detonating a tiny bit of explosive with a loud crack. Once pulled, the contents of the cracker are revealed and always contain paper hats and favours. 

The quality of the hats and favours depends on the price of the crackers but there will always be the ridiculous paper crowns and tiny favours like whistles, tiny fans, riddles, puzzles, tape measures plus a corny joke on a rolled up piece of paper. 

The other Christmas ritual is the timing of the Christmas meal. It must finish before 3 p.m. so everyone can gather around the telly and watch Her Majesty The Queen’s Christmas message.” 

Editor/Publisher Julie Maglio: 

“Our family makes Spiedinis. Spiedini in Italian means “small meat roll.”  We usually use thin slices of veal rolled up with a breadcrumb and cheese mixture with a piece of onion. The men pound the meat, converse loudly and assemble the spiedinis with all ingredients stuck together on a toothpick.  They yell for ingredients when they run out and beer is consumed by those of the appropriate age. Meanwhile in the kitchen the ladies dip each assembled spadini into an egg batter and cook them in a fry pan until golden brown.  Some are consumed as soon as they are cool enough to eat. We serve the rest with the Christmas meal and also freeze a portion for Easter. Christmas isn’t complete without spiedinis in our family.”

Dear Reader, 

We hope you have a wonderful Christmas and enjoy any and all traditions you may have with your family this holiday season.  If you’d like your Christmas Tradition printed in our upcoming Christmas issue email: [email protected]  Deadline is tomorrow (Tuesday Dec. 17) at 4PM. Don’t forget to include photos too!

 

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