Christmas Traditions – In USA, Portugal & Around the World???

Holidays & Special Occasions Christmas-Yule-hanukkah-Kwanzaa-Winter Solstice Christmas Traditions – In USA, Portugal & Around the World???

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    • #265077

      Hello everyone! I’ve been noticing that we have people on our boards that are not only from the US, but other countries as well. (I’ve noticed Portugal 🙂 .) Anyway, I thought it would be interesting to find out about some Christmas traditions. Please post your Christmas traditions here. Tell us where you’re from (country outside of US, North, South, East, West USA, etc) and what is traditional for that area. Also, if you’d like to tell us some traditional Christmas recipes as well, that would be great! I would love to learn more about everybody’s traditions! Thanks so much!

    • #401259

      I’ll start. 🙂 I have dear friends who are from Bolivia. I have spent Christmas with them before. It is so much fun! On Christmas Eve, they have a party. They sing & fellowship together, waiting for midnight. At midnight, everyone gives “besos” (kisses), greeting each other with “feliz navidad” (Merry Christmas). Then they enjoy a wonderful meal (yes, at midnight!) and open presents!!! Its really wonderful! 🙂

    • #401285


      In Portugal, well at least my family, we usually have a cod fish dinner, on Christmas Eve, simply boiled with boiled potatoes and vegetables (cabbage and carrots, mostly), and we eat in the dinner room with Xmas table towels and napkins. After dinner we usually sit in the living room and talk, but there was a year that my nieces entertained us, with dance and a theater, it was much fun. At midnight we open the presents, and after the opening of the presents we eat turkey and tradicional cakes heres (Bolo-rei – king’s cake, rabanadas – don’t know the name, but it’s bread dipped in milk and in egg, then fried and sprinkled with sugar and cinnamon, hmmmm; amd filhoses – again, don’t know how to translate, but is a mix with sugar, flour and other stuff and fried, and then sprinkled with sugar and cinnamon, also), and we drink Port Wine. When my nieces were little, the distribution of presents was made by Santa, usually one of us disguised (The year I was Santa my oldest niece noticed I was missing, I had to tell her I had been in the Bathroom – LOL).
      Then, on Christmas Day, the lunch is made of roasted goat (how do you call the son of the goat?), in a wooden oven, with roasted potatoes, rice and “esparregado” (greens chopped really tiny, and sauteed with flour and vinegar). In the afternoon we go for a walk.

      Two years ago I was working in Faro (in the south of Portugal) on the 26th, and I didn’t have time to go home for Xmas, so the family came to my house. We had to camp on the floor of my room (I was dividing the house with friends) and my nieces were Santa. Very funny.

      I believe that every family in Portugal has it’s own traditions. Also the food is different from region to region. I believe that in Algarve (South) the eat more fish.


    • #401283

      My Xmas is almost a copycat from Pat’s though we open our presents sooner because we all go to sleep before midnight. Grandma is always sleepy, my mom too. So we gather around and give presents. sometimes we play some kind of board game if we are still awake. As I am married we divide between my family and my husband’s. On Xmas eve we go to my mom – near home and on Xmas day we go to my MIL. Since they lived in Germany for a long time we usually have all kinds of German treats, lebkuchen, dark forest cake, apple crumble cake instead of the portuguese treats as Pat described.

      I think that in Portugal it is necessary to have a big, big table filled with lots of good food and desserts – then people continue eating it in different ways for some days after :).

      In my home (mom) we never sang but we are trying to do it with our children!
      There is also a midnight mass (which we don’t attend – because we are asleep by then) which is called the Rooster’s mass (my translation) – that is still a tradition, especially in small villages where i live for instance.

    • #401293

      My MIL and Great -Grandmother were from Germany. MIL always had German treats too. She was an a wonderful baker. My DH’s Uncle also baked all kinds of wonderful German Breads— Dark forest cake & Apple Crumble Cake were a favorite of mine. DH ‘s family also made awsome candies. Would love to have some of those Old German recipes. I so miss those times we spent with them.. QueenSissi if you ever get time — could you post some of the German recipes (lebkuchen, dark forest cake, apple crumble cake). It would be a lovely present for my DH to have some of these itmes for Christmas.

    • #401319

      I’ll have to ask MIL, which is good since I’ll learn how to make it here 🙂

    • #401320

      We always have appetizers on Christmas Eve !!! We make our meal out of it !!! Also the Saturday befor Christmas we all make homemade candy,fudge,chocolate, etc. !!!! We all love to cook. I am from Kentucky & this is something my whole family does.

    • #401345

      Thank – You QueenSissi , Sounds like both of us will have fun learning this Hoilday Season. incheck4real — how sweet what a nice Tradition. I have some family living in Ky. Hope to see you around on the site. Would love to see some of your family recipes. Fudge is the bomb and Chocolate…Oh My !! :dance:

    • #401562

      When does everybody open presents? Christmas Eve or Christmas Day?

    • #401564

      Both… some with my family, some with ou family on Xmas morning and some with my MIL at Xmas lunch.

    • #401816

      We open our stockings on Christmas Eve and our Presents on Christmas Day !!!

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Holidays & Special Occasions Christmas-Yule-hanukkah-Kwanzaa-Winter Solstice Christmas Traditions – In USA, Portugal & Around the World???