Afishapa, Joyeux Noël, Feliz Navidad, Merry Christmas: Christmas Around the World

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With Christmas right around the corner, it gives us a lot of time to reflect on some of the traditions that many different families have during Christmas time. Many American traditions include the very special Christmas dinner, that may even exceed the greatness of Thanksgiving (it’s convenient that both of these holidays are four weeks apart). Then there’s caroling, walking through the chilly nights to share the joy of Jingle Bells and Silent Night with anyone who will listen. Spending the eve of the day celebrating the reason of the season, whether it be in church or at home. Finally, the main one that we can’t forget, Santa Clause. The elderly man who’s been encouraging kids to be nice, rather than naughty and sliding down chimneys for as long as we can remember. With all this in mind, it raises the question, what are Maryville international students doing for Christmas, and what traditions they may have?

kinehKineh Sando-Kleppe, a student from Norway, will be celebrating Christmas at home with her family. They will be spending Christmas up in the Norwegian Mountains. “We usually celebrate Christmas on [December 24] with a Christmas Breakfast, then we go skiing and have a special rice porridge for lunch with cinnamon and butter on top. After we rest, we then have dinner and open Christmas presents”, Kleppe said. Photo courtesy of Kineh Sando-Kleppe.


srahReturning back to Switzerland this holiday break, Sarah Etter stated that her family traditions also include spending time in a cabin in the mountains with her closest family and decorating the Christmas tree. “On Christmas Eve, we have a big Christmas dinner and then open up presents,” Etter said. Photo courtesy of Sarah Etter.


puckPuck Vlaskamp, a student from the Netherlands, will also be returning home for the holidays. Her family traditions include a three-course meal with close friends and family on Christmas day. Then on December 26, they have a small barbeque. “We grill different kinds of meat on a small grill,” Vlaskamp stated excitedly. Photo courtesy of Puck Vlaskamp.



International Christmas Fun Factsgreece

  • Christmas in Russia is actually celebrated on January 7.
  • In Greece, Christmas Caroling is a way to earn money.japan
  • In Japan, Christmas Eve is like a Valentine’s Day celebration, and people often eat fried chicken on Christmas day.
  • In Trinidad and Tobago, Christmas dinners start in the middle of trinidadDecember and go into the new year.
  • In Brazil, Santa Claus is called Papai Noel.


Fun facts courtesy of Why Christmas.

Now that you know some traditions from around the world, tweet us your own family traditions @Mvillepawprint!

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