Merry Christmas from Sweden!

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Merry Christmas from Sweden!

Post by Ann » Sun Dec 24, 2017 6:48 am

Christmas in the amusement park of Göteborg during a snowy December.
There is no snow there now.
Merry Christmas! God Jul! It is December the 24th, so it is "julafton" in Sweden, and this is our big, big day of Christmas in Sweden!
Santa visits many Swedish homes on Christmas Eve! Photo: Henrik Montgomery/TT

Many Swedish kids definitely expect a visit from "jultomten", our Swedish name for Santa, on Christmas Eve. When my brother was five years old, he wondered why "jultomten" wore our neighbor's shoes. He is sharp, my brother!
Christmas presents under the tree. Gorm Kallestad/NTB Scanpix

Before Santa comes to deliver them, the Christmas gifts are usually stored under the tree. The stocking is actually not common.

Of course, Christmas is very much about food. The star of the Swedish Christmas table is the Christmas ham. But there should also be different herring dishes, meat balls, sausages, cabbage dishes, maybe brussel sprouts, Christmas cheese, Christmas bread and Christmas rice porridge.

Lucia in Sweden. Ola Ericson/

Our most solemn December tradition takes place before Christmas, on December 13. That is when we celebrate Lucia. Lucia and her "tärnor" (maids) and "stjärngossar" (star-boys) carry candles, walk into a some sort of "room" or space where the lights have been dimmed, and sing Lucia songs to a rapt audience. At left Lucia and her maids and star-boys sing in the Gustav Vasa Church in Stockholm.

And what about tomorrow? Well, on Christmas Day Christmas is mostly over for Swedes. Tomorrow the "julrea" (Christmas sale) starts, and a lot of people rush to the stores to make bargains. Others prefer to laze on the sofa all day, eat Christmas leftovers, visit relatives who couldn't make it on Christmas Eve, take a walk in town or in the woods in the probably not so nice weather, or just spend time enjoying their Christmas gifts.

So, once again, Merry Christmas from Sweden!

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Re: Merry Christmas from Sweden!

Post by rstevenson » Tue Dec 26, 2017 2:25 pm

And a belated but Merry Christmas to you, Ann, from Canada.