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  • Christmas Traditions from Our Homelands

    I thought this thread might be fun and give us a chance to learn about each other's Christmas traditions. The idea was actually inspired by Miss Saigon, who reminded me of something from my childhood.

    Thank you for that.

    Like many immigrants, my parents brought holiday traditions here to America with them, and I grew up with a quite a few. I only spent two Christmas' in Germany. The first I was too young to remember, the second in 1972.

    "Dickbauch" translates to "fat stomach", the German name for Christmas Eve because it is believed that those who do not eat well on Christmas Eve will be haunted by demons during the night. Traditional Christmas Eve feasts include suckling pig, a sweet cinnamon called "reisbrei", white sausage and a macaroni salad.

    Christmas Day brings with it a banquet of plump roast goose and a favorite of my youth, "Christstollen" or stollen bread. Long loaves of bread bursting with nuts, raisins, citron and dried fruit and "Lebkuchen" or spice bars, and "Dresden Stollen" a heavy, very moist bread filled to the point of busting with fruit.

    My favorite American Christmas tradition, the placing out of cookies and milk for Santa. Among my best memories of my daughter growing up was her making sure each year that just the right ratio of cookies milk were on the table before she went to bed. Along with a red napkin and a thank you note in advance for all the goodies he would leave.
    ACG QUOTE OF THE WEEK:
    ¿Cualquier persona fija en el nude? Slug

  • #2
    Originally posted by cyberia View Post
    I thought this thread might be fun and give us a chance to learn about each other's Christmas traditions. The idea was actually inspired by Miss Saigon, who reminded me of something from my childhood.

    Thank you for that.

    Like many immigrants, my parents brought holiday traditions here to America with them, and I grew up with a quite a few. I only spent two Christmas' in Germany. The first I was too young to remember, the second in 1972.

    "Dickbauch" translates to "fat stomach", the German name for Christmas Eve because it is believed that those who do not eat well on Christmas Eve will be haunted by demons during the night. Traditional Christmas Eve feasts include suckling pig, a sweet cinnamon called "reisbrei", white sausage and a macaroni salad.

    Christmas Day brings with it a banquet of plump roast goose and a favorite of my youth, "Christstollen" or stollen bread. Long loaves of bread bursting with nuts, raisins, citron and dried fruit and "Lebkuchen" or spice bars, and "Dresden Stollen" a heavy, very moist bread filled to the point of busting with fruit.

    My favorite American Christmas tradition, the placing out of cookies and milk for Santa. Among my best memories of my daughter growing up was her making sure each year that just the right ratio of cookies milk were on the table before she went to bed. Along with a red napkin and a thank you note in advance for all the goodies he would leave.
    How marvelous that is! We do the traditional Polish pre-Christmas Celebration, in that, my Brother and I put on a "Viglia Feast". The vast majority of the day is devoted towards making pierogi (Potato, sautee'd-onion and cheese-stuffed dumplings) We also have several smoked and otherwise poached or pickled fish courses, courtesy of yours truly, along with an enormous vegetable tray and beet borsht soup course, if my Mother is in town.

    Christmas Morning is always a big feast breakfast table laden with home made, fresh kiielbassa, fried eggs, hash brown potatoes and toast. I've already prepared my Brother's kielbassaa and mine. They are both resting safely in the freezer.
    "Profanity is but a linguistic crutch for illiterate motherbleepers"

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    • #3
      Thanks to Boonies "Peeps" in Vietnam the "Buche Noel", or Christmas Yule Log Cake is popular. I bake one and serve it to friends and family at Midnight on Christmas eve or after Midnight mass if I go to church with my catholic friends.


      Last edited by Miss Saigon; 02 Dec 07, 23:43.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by johnbryan View Post
        How marvelous that is! We do the traditional Polish pre-Christmas Celebration, in that, my Brother and I put on a "Viglia Feast". The vast majority of the day is devoted towards making pierogi (Potato, sautee'd-onion and cheese-stuffed dumplings) We also have several smoked and otherwise poached or pickled fish courses, courtesy of yours truly, along with an enormous vegetable tray and beet borsht soup course, if my Mother is in town.

        Christmas Morning is always a big feast breakfast table laden with home made, fresh kiielbassa, fried eggs, hash brown potatoes and toast. I've already prepared my Brother's kielbassaa and mine. They are both resting safely in the freezer.
        I love pierogis and kielbassaa. Nearby Scranton has a large Polish population and twice a year, Christmas and Easter, they start cranking them out. At one butcher shop prized for its kielbassaa you have get there at about 7 in the morning. That's when the line starts to form.
        ACG QUOTE OF THE WEEK:
        ¿Cualquier persona fija en el nude? Slug

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        • #5
          When my Grand dad was alive Christmas was a great day, all of the family would get together and have the annual Christmas roast and home made pudding.
          But since he passed away a some years ago that special day has been avoided by a few family members, some refusing to go out and mingle with the rest of us... just stay at home and ponder what Christmas was like for them in the past.

          My family hopes to share Christmas at our house this year, my mum and dad and grand mother will be here for lunch so it will be good for the kids to see some relatives get involved and share with us. A lot of my family live through out Australia and it's rare to see all of us together under one roof, sadly the only times many of us do converge in one spot is for a funeral, or for which I'm extremely grateful, my wedding last week.
          "In modern war... you will die like a dog for no good reason."
          Ernest Hemingway.

          "The more I learn about people, The more I love my dog".
          Mark Twain.

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          • #6
            I will share my family tradition from my youth if that is okay.

            On Christmas Eve, My parents spend the entire night calling relatives and friends. Many of these people they had not seen for years. Some, they had never met. My sister and I were put on the phone sometimes to say Merry Christmas to an Uncle So-and-so or Aunt Whats-her-name. I did not understand it as a youth, often thinking it was silly and a waste of time. My job every year was to place throughout the house the numerous Christmas Cards that arrived. All available space was taken and many cards had to hang on tinsel lines running back and forth across the house. My mom would keep reminding me to take my time, read every card, remember their names, who their parents were, and never forget that we came from the same place and were spread around the world. I did not understand it then, but now I do. Each year I go home to see my mother, the Christmas Cards displayed is always a little less than the year before. It saddens me that the earlier generation tried so hard to remember their past, maintain contact with relatives and friends from their homeland, and yet the younger generations, me included, blessed with so much more means of modern communication have failed to achieve what our parents have done with a pen and a postal stamp. We owe it to our parents and grandparents to stay in touch with our past and relations to honor their sacrifices.
            Flag: USA / Location: West Coast

            Prayers.

            BoRG

            http://img204.imageshack.us/img204/8757/snap1ws8.jpg

            https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5PtsX_Z3CMU

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            • #7
              well, after church we usually we have a coal pit hunggi and then the traditional family cricket grudge match down at the beach.

              As my cousins have had families of their own, it's become more traditional in the church, presents, lunch sense. When we were younger, cricket was replaced by football, until my cousin Evelle broke her arm - since then we've stuck with cricket.

              My fiancee is a single child from an agnostic family - so it'll be fun for her to go through the whole Catholic Xmas experience, before I stick her at silly mid-on while my cousin Dave is bowling
              Now listening too;
              - Russell Robertson, ruining whatever credibility my football team once had.

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              • #8
                The traditional meal here includes Foie Gras:


                Oysters ()


                Christmas Turkey ( the same kind you guys are having for thanksgiving in the States)


                And finally, as MS pointed out, the classic Bûche de Noël:

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                • #9
                  Can we extend the thread to include new year traditions too?.

                  I only ask because of the intervoven history between 'Christian' and 'Pagan' festivals and celebrations. As far as i'm concerened they all stem from 'pre-historic' mid-winter feasting!

                  In this light, our family always 'saw the new year in', by which we either went 'first-footing' (if away from home) or greeted it by standing at our front door (if at home).



                  Gaz

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by allsirgarnet View Post
                    Can we extend the thread to include new year traditions too?
                    Gaz

                    But of course.
                    ACG QUOTE OF THE WEEK:
                    ¿Cualquier persona fija en el nude? Slug

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                    • #11
                      We have a tradition of leaving a candle lighting in a front window to let travellers know that they are welcome at our table on Christmas eve.
                      Of course no-one ever called and if they did we would have told them to get lost…. But it’s the thought that counts, right?

                      For food we have a big American flightless bird, ham, a roasted American root vegetable (hint; we eat loads of them, one time they ran out and we had a famine), chestnut stuffing and other assorted vegetables.
                      The whole thing revolves around Mass on Christmas morning (I never said I wasn’t a hypocrite) and then eating too much food, drinking (a little) too much wine and trying to assemble and put stickers on the kids toys while being so full that it’s hard to bend down.

                      Then there’s a few days of turkey sandwiches, if they don’t finish the bird then it’s turkey curry. After the turkey curry a long walk is advised to avoid gassing the rest of the family.

                      OK so that was more of a routine than a tradition but that’s how they start…
                      "The thing about quotes on the internet is that you cannot confirm their
                      validity." - Abraham Lincoln.
                      "Nothing's going to change while one side it lying about the cause and the other is lying about the solution" - Me

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                      • #12
                        Watching "Christmas Vacation"......
                        “The time has come,” the Walrus said,
                        “To talk of many things:
                        Of shoes—and ships—and sealing-wax—
                        Of cabbages—and kings—
                        And why the sea is boiling hot—
                        And whether pigs have wings.”
                        ― Lewis Carroll

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Miss.Saigon View Post
                          Thanks to Boonies "Peeps" in Vietnam the "Buche Noel", or Christmas Yule Log Cake is popular. I bake one and serve it to friends and family at Midnight on Christmas eve or after Midnight mass if I go to church with my catholic friends.


                          Looks absolutely delicious! What's in it?
                          "Profanity is but a linguistic crutch for illiterate motherbleepers"

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Combatengineer View Post
                            Watching "Christmas Vacation"......
                            I sure hope I get my Christmas bonus this year. Cousin Eddie and his family are visiting this year.

                            I also like "Christmas Story". In fact I just got this big wooden crate in the mail. It must be from Italy, because it says "Fragile" on the outside.

                            "You're riding high in April,
                            Shot down in May
                            But I know I'm gonna change that tune,
                            When I'm back on top, back on top in June." 'That's Life'

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Sgt. Rock View Post
                              I sure hope I get my Christmas bonus this year. Cousin Eddie and his family are visiting this year.

                              I also like "Christmas Story". In fact I just got this big wooden crate in the mail. It must be from Italy, because it says "Fragile" on the outside.

                              "You're riding high in April,
                              Shot down in May
                              But I know I'm gonna change that tune,
                              When I'm back on top, back on top in June." 'That's Life'
                              Yup, we do both at my Father-In-Laws house on Christmas day.......
                              “The time has come,” the Walrus said,
                              “To talk of many things:
                              Of shoes—and ships—and sealing-wax—
                              Of cabbages—and kings—
                              And why the sea is boiling hot—
                              And whether pigs have wings.”
                              ― Lewis Carroll

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