Father Slapper Leave your shoes on the hearth Decorations in Nice, France
● Les Treize refers to “the thirteen,” which are 13 different kinds of desserts standard at all French Christmas dinners. The idea behind Les Treize is religious, as the 13 desserts refer to Jesus Christ and his 12 apostles. However, they’re also delicious, ranging from dried grapes and almonds to a delicious cake called pompe à l’huile.
St. Lucia was a young Christian girl who was killed for her faith in 304 AD. There are several stories, but the most popular one is that she brought food to persecuted Christian in Rome hiding in the catacombs. She wore the candles on her head so she would have both hands free to carry the food.
● A traditional Christmas dinner in Sweden always includes risgryngrot, a special rice porridge with one almond in it. Traditionally, the person who finds the almond gets to make a wish or is believed to get married the coming year.
“God Jul, and [Och] Ett Gott Nytt Ar!”
● Advent is an important part of the German celebrating of the season. An Advent Calendar can be a wreath of fir tree branches is decorated with 24 decorated bags or boxes hung from it, each marked with the day and holding a small present.
● An "Advent Kranz" is a ring of fir branches with four candles which are lit at the beginning of each week in Advent.
The Advent Calendar Advent Wreath Krampus
● Krampus Nacht [Krampus Night] is a sort of German boogey man, who is a sidekick of St Nicholas. He is believed to accompany St Nicholas to teach naughty children a hard lesson. In Southern Bavaria, men in hideous Krampus costumes patrol the streets on St Nicholas Night, and are sometimes invited in by parents of particularly naughty children. Krampus dos not have a standard image, but all of them are ugly.
“Froeh Weihnachten!” or “Froehliche Weihnachten!”
● Children leave out carrots for Santa's reindeer and beer and pineapple for Santa.
● Along with conventional Christmas Trees [with Kiwi birds as toppers instead of an angel or star], the New Zealand Pōhutukawa tree is associated with Christmas. They grow to a large size but small ones can be decorated along with their red flowers. They are often found on Christmas cards.
● Caroling is a Christmas tradition there, but the islands have their own Christmas songs which are set to traditional tunes sung in Maori, and original titles such as A pukeko in a ponga tree.
● The summer holiday break begins on Christmas Eve and lasts until the end of January. Schools are closed throughout January and much of December for New Zealand school holiday, and many families head to the beaches.
“Meri Kirihimete!" [Maori]
When the Soviet Union fell in 1991, Russians have increasingly returned to religion, and the number of people celebrating Christmas as a religious holiday continues to grow.
Saint Petersburg-Church on Spilled Blood Moscow-Red Square-Church of Saint Basil
Image Source: tripsavvy.com/russia-christmas-traditions Image source: Denis Sinyakov/ Reuters
● The Russian Santa Claus is named Ded Moroz, or Father Frost [ Дед Мороз ]. On New Year's Eve, he places presents for children under the New Year tree [as opposed to a Christmas tree]. He is accompanied by Snegurochka [Снегу́рочка], a snow maiden said to be his granddaughter.
He carries a staff; dons a red hat, and he gets around Russia by taking a troika, a vehicle [sleigh] pulled by three horses [no reindeer for the Russians]. He wears a blue, silver, or gold coat lined with white fur and valenki, traditional felt boots made of wool. Unlike Santa, Ded Moroz is tall and thin.
Image Source:02varvara.wodrpress.com/ Image Source: File:Ded Moroz 72.jpg - Wikimedia Commons
▼ Ded Moroz and Snequrochka ▼ Exhibition: Russia, Vologda Fair «Russian forest», Ded Moroz
Image Credit: © Goodfon.ruCredit
● On Christmas Eve, Russians eat the Nativity Feast; typically meatless and can be made up of twelve dishes to represent the twelve apostles. Lenten bread, dipped in honey and garlic, is shared by all members of the family at this festive gathering. Kutya is a concoction of grains and poppy seeds sweetened with honey; it is served as one of the main dishes of the Christmas feast. Vegetarian-style borscht, or solyanka, is a salty stew that may also be served along with salads, sauerkraut, dried fruit, potatoes, and beans.
● The Christmas day meal may feature a main course of pork, goose, or other meat dish. This is accompanied by a variety of side dishes such as aspic, stuffed pies, and desserts in various forms.
● Some Russians exchange Christmas gifts, but most of that is reserved for New Year’s Eve.
“S rozhdyestvom Hristovym!” Congratulations of the birth of Christ! “с Рождеством w!”.