This will probably make me sound like an old lady but I can’t believe it’s almost Christmas again! It seems like yesterday I was wishing everyone a happy 2015… It probably has something to do with the weather, too. It’s about 15°C in Belgium and this weekend I even had a drink on a terrace in Brussels.
But there’s no way to deny it: 2016 is right behind the corner and in a couple of days I’ll be gathering around the Christmas tree with my family again. Yay! I guess everyone has different Christmas traditions, every country, every family, and I’m very curious to know how YOU celebrate Christmas! Please tell me all about it in the comments.
But first, let me tell you what I’ll be doing for Christmas!
Well actually, nothing fancy. Sounding old twice in one article, way to go Liesbeth! I always spend Christmas eve with my close family: my mom, dad, sister and boyfriend. Before my boyfriend’s mother passed away we spent every other year with his parents but now it’s just his father who doesn’t really care about Christmas and his grandmother who goes to bed at 9 pm. She’s soooo cool, she’s 90 and is always talking about how she fell in love with a pilot from the American army during the 2nd World War and how her father forbid her to follow him and other great stories, but going to bed at 9 pm isn’t really what I’d call a party! So we celebrate Christmas day with her instead and spend Christmas eve at my parent’s house. Plus that’s where all the presents are!
We all gather at my parent’s house, which is the house I grew up in. It’s about 140 km from where I live now, which of course isn’t far on a world scale but still too far to go there every week. So it’s always great going back! We’re not really a catholic family so for us, Christmas is mostly about spending time together, talking all night and pursuing our own little traditions.
One of them is eating. We eat way to much on Christmas eve. We start with all kinds of apetizers, than eat fondue (lots of it) and end with ice cream for desert. I have no idea what it’s called in English but in Dutch we call it ‘Kerststronk’ or ‘bûche de Noël’ in French, which literally means Christmas tree stump. Trust me, it tastes better than it sounds! 🙂
Another – rather silly – tradition is the way we dress. I don’t really remember when it started but one year we’d been so busy preparing the food and the presents and everything, that when we finally sat down at the table, we all realized we were actually still wearing our pyjama’s. Another tradition was born! It’s not only funny, but also elastic, which is a plus with all the food.
See how cool I looked last year, in my special Christmas onesie! Hahaha – or rather HOHOHO! 🙂
Once we’re done eating we watch typical Christmas movies (think Annie or The sound of music) and give each other presents. TONS of presents! Everybody buys presents for everybody and we rarely just buy 1 ‘main’ present but mostly lots of smaller presents for everyone.
Here’s a picture of our house last year (picture on the left) and those are only the presents my boyfriend and I bought for each other and the rest of the family! So I guess it’s time to admit it: we’re crazy!! That’s not typically Belgian, it’s just us. 🙂
From the picture you’ll probably understand I’m a sucker for Christmas decorations. The picture on the right is from this year. Welcome in my living room!
As you can see, there’s no presents yet but we’re solving that problem as we speak. We’re in Strasbourg, France, for some serious Christmas shopping – and to visit the city too, obviously. Yay!
So I guess that’s it, now you know everything about how I celebrate Christmas. Or at least the fun part of it. We do have one more ‘tradition’, a thing we do every Christmas, which is remember my own dear grandmother, who passed away on Christmas day 23 years ago. It’s been a long time but we never forget her. So my last thought of this article goes out to her.
Wherever you are, whatever you’re doing, I wish you all a merry Christmas!