Do you open presents Christmas Eve or Christmas day?
What sort of Festive Fare (Food) is served at the table to celebrate Christmas?
And when do you have that festive fare?
What is the routine to celebrate Christmas with your family?
In Australia usually hot so we usually have a non-traditional christmas feast, looking more towards salads and seafood or cold Turkey, pork etc. Desserts can be anything from traditional Plum Pudding to Pavlova, cheesecake, fruit salad with Ice Cream, Custard etc.
Santa comes christmas eve, when we are all asleep and in the morning on Christmas day all the presents are under the tree ready to be opened. We usually leave out a beer and some cookies for santa Christmas eve for his arrival when we are all asleep so he can have a snack before setting off on the rest of his journey around the world. (Now the kids are young adults that does not happen now )
Then at Lunch Time, christmas day, is the family feast with other family and friends and by mid-afternoon ready to snooze, ready to pop the buttons and collaspe in a heap on the couch and watch TV Christmas shows. Early evening we take the fur kids to the park and let them have a romp and play then back home for left overs, doggies dinners and the usual, "Why in the hell did I eat so much" OOOOOH diet starts tomorrow
Be nice to hear how you and your family Celebrate Christmas and what is your traditions where you live?
We do get Santa first in the Land Downunder
|neat one Lisa!
Unfortunately don'e have any now..... just another day here.
Normally I would put up individual Christmas stockings for each animal and Norm and I but not even that this year.
Growing up was a wonderful time. Grand parents would start ariving the weekend before Christmas. Christmas eve would be busy... last minute shopping etc.. packages all around under the tree. my mom would have the house decorated to the hilt, looking like something out of Town and Country magazine... all the silver polished, china out etc.
Cookies and milk out when we would go to bed. This would be the only night the lights on the tree would be left on all night. When we were little we were told we could not come down until at least 7 am! Usually my brother would come wake me up... then we would sneak down and peak at what Santa had left....... (he was 9 years older than me and he alread knew what was going on!) Then we would go and wake up my parents and grandparents. Down we would all come....... my brother would usually hand out all the presents to each person and once we all had our "piles" we could start in....
Last would be our stockings oranges, apples, banannas, nut mixtures....and always in the toe of the stocking would be a very good gift! As i got older my dad bought me a beautiful diamond coctail ring.
Then, my dad would go to cook Christmas breakfast.... Fried Quail, Biscuits and cream gravy!!! I MISS that breakfast so much...... then to watch the Christmas parade on the tv.
Then as soon as that meal was finished, my mom would start in cooking the turkey and (ick) cornbread dressing, mashed potatoes, many side dishes, candied sweet potatoes and I was usually given the task of (yes, she really made me do this, I think to keep me out of trouble and busy) peeling the grapes for the fruit salad. My grandmom would have brought with her a homemade fruit pound cake (that you could smell the brandy/whiskey from the minute she opened the car trunk) when they got there, also a 4 layer homemade Coconut cake (mmmmm) and Boiled custard. (mmm miss that too.... don't think the Dr. would appreciate it with my cholesterol at its level now)
We'd then sit back for a full day of football on tv (wasn't it always the Cowboys and Redskins???)
Dinner would be served as soon as the football games on tv were done. By then we would all roll in front of the tv after everything was cleaned up.. and watch whatever..
Those were the days!! By not having any kids, I think I missed out on alot. No family left (brother killed when i was 15) ... so it is just another day here now.
|Oh beer and cookies - and you get him first. its a wonder he ends up in NA at all we put out milk and cookies when the kids were little, now we eat cookies and cocoa at night
we open gifts on Christmas. when the kids were little it was at dawn, now that they are young adults its closer to noon everyone puts up a stocking and the kids expect gifts in the as well as fruit and candy and artichokes (don't remember how that started)
after presents we have a big breakfast, sausage, eggs and pancakes usually a sweet as well - we really aren't breakfast eaters so this serves more as brunch to hold us over to dinner.
the kids and hubby always want turkey again at christmas, pretty similar to thanksgiving dinner, a little lighter.
my son usually gets up and does along run before presents, the rest of us are lazy, but I do try to take the dogs out for a romp or long walk at some point.
|my dad was inthe british army so we would be together christmas eve gaurantued so thats when the christmas tree went up and the house got decorated ( my parents still don't put up their tree till then)
my mum is big on christmas eve we eat snack foods, drink and be merry. we got to open one present before bedtime on christmas eve, usually new books or pjs.
then christmas day was like a military opperation, up (no touching the presents) out of bed, washed, dressed, eat breakfast, clean up, start the lunch (we have roast chicken as my dad and brother don't like turkey), then all sit down to open pressents ( my parents still do this) my poor brother still lives at home too. clean up from present , take them to your room, eat christmas lunch, this would be finished just intime for my dad to fall asleep in the arm chair or on the safa and the queens speach to be on.
then we would spend the day wanting the movies they would put on tv.
now my son is 3 and a half this year and keps telling me what santa is getting him, so this year we are goingto my mother in laws christmas eve and sleeping over ( isaacs present are all there the little monster can find them werever i hide them) we will ring my mum on the webcam in the uk before they go to bed. then when isaac wakes up we will ring them again in the morning and isaac will open the present santa leaves upstairs from nanny in england so my parents and grand parents can see on the webcam. we will then leave them to their dinner and queens speach. while i let isaac run down stairs let himself in to his other grandparents bedroom to jump on the bed and when they are up we will let him open the other ones from santa that he left downsatirs. mess and chaos will happen i'm sure and my hubby will spend all day building lego and garages but it will be fun, my babys first real christmas with santa.
zoe and einy ( who will steal the christmas paper i'm sure)
|I'd say I can't imagine celebrating Christmas in the summer, but being from....Texas, I think I can imagine it. Grrrrr....
In our family, every family member gets an equal number of presents.... Christmas morning, one by one... we go around and unwrap one gift at a time in a circle until they're all unwrapped which is usually something that can last until noon. Then while the men watch sports, the women are cooking and chasing kids araound. The men then enjoy some games while the women continue to cook and by this time... have probably at least joined in on the drinking.
Christmas Eve, we read our children the night before Christmas and then the story of Jesus being born. A concert at church and evening service is also on the list.
I guess in Mr. J's family... he lives in a neighborhood very famous in tx. It's one of those neighborhoods that each house participates in christmas lights and that street is themed (snowmen, angels, etc, etc). So they would drive through which would take all night since the traffic is nuts. He mentioned wanting to do that this year, but to be honest... I hope we don't. I watched it on youtube ...that's all I'm interested in this year.
|As time has evolved and I have gotten, yes it's true, older, I have really modified what Christmas is in my household... We have gotten away from all the major gift giving, we make gifts, or in some instances buy a gift to give to each other that really means something or is useful or needed. My gift to my family is the meal I prepare. Each year I try to make something really extravagant... One year I did Prime Rib, one year I did Stuffed Roast, and another I did chippino. This year I'm doing Lobster Tails, baked potatos, veggies and desert for everyone...
When Lee and I were first married, I made quiche for Christmas Breakfast, and that has become our tradition, my husband looks forward to it each year now. He always asks how much crab and shrimp should he purchase for the breakfast quiches (plural, more than one is baked)... So we have wonderful coffee, and fresh baked quiche and fruit salad for breakfast. I put out a small spread of cold cuts and such for lunch and then dinner is my gift as I mentioned above...
Another tradition that Lee and I have is that we go shop for the grand kids in San Francisco, we take the train or BART to the city and shop and have lunch and have a good time, this year we got pretty wet... We did have fun... We always take a picture of each other on our cell phones with the big tree behind us.. this years were pretty funny, I found a santa hat that is really comfy and warm, I wear it all the time. I'm about to put it on right now and join my co-workers for our annual holiday luncheon...
But to boil it down, I have departed from the big ticket items and we really try to concentrate on being together, eating, playing some games, going for a nice walk and slowing down to just be... I like it a lot more and it's alot less stress than years before...
|When with the family it's open a present on Xmas eve and the rest on xmas morning. Dinner is always the traditional stuff nothing out of thew ordinary.
Xmas in Co different story. This xmas eve will be dinner with friends, a live band, I'm 100% positive alcohol with be flowing of all kinds. Come home put out Obe's presents, go to bed. Obe will have most likely ate his treat in his stocking(only putting one in) and chewed/chewing new bone by the time I wake. The bear is still in tact by the way.
Then off to another friends house for more drinking, another dinner, and just hanging out. That is going to be xmas this year.
Oh and we are all getting each other gift cards for a real nice restaurant that we frequently visit.
|What a fun thread!
Christmas eve is "friend" day for us, we drive around (weather permitting ) and drop off gifts and hang out with our friends, check out the various neighborhood's decorations, etc. Dinner that night is our "big" Christmas meal, shared with my employee, Nathan, and his boyfriend Chris. Traditionally, this meal is seafood: shrimp, scallops, crab, etc. Scott and I usually open one gift each (from each other) before bed.
Christmas morning is always spent with my parents, at their house, along with my Niece Jenny and her fiance Ryan. We have breakfast (cooked by my Mom and my husband) and we spend all morning and part of the afternoon opening gifts, drinking coffee, and playing with the dogs (Abby and Bert, of course come with, and they have a great time with my parent's two labs).
Xmas evening is for just Scott and I together (and of course the pups!) My folks go off to the extended family dinner, but we head home for a quiet evening, usually with "nibble" type food that we can eat while curled up on the couch.
|When the kids were little, we always reserved Christmas eve for "Finch Christmas" - Todd's very large family get together. (7 boys, 1 girl, and all but one brother live locally) All the other side families had Christmas day or another weekend (some of the "outlaws" have family farther away.)
We still do the Christmas eve, although this will be the 1st year with both Todd's parents gone.
Christmas Eve is the Finch side, and it is a huge potluck of wonderful foods, snacks and desserts. We do a name exchange, as we are up to almost 50 people now! Creativity rules, as the adult gifts are $20, and the kids $10. It takes some creative shopping or crafting to get a good gift for your person on that budget.
Then after gift opening, it migrates to a night of eating, chatting, card games, board games and watching movies.
Christmas morning was always our immediate family time. Open gifts and Todd makes a big breakfast. Hang out, and do stuff outside, hopefully we had a white Christmas each year. The guys always ice fish too.
The last few years, we have added going out to our favorite Chinese restaurant for supper.
This year we are juggling more. LeAnne and Keith are heading an hour south of us to his parents later on Christmas eve (after stopping at Finch Christmas) and staying overnight there. Lisa is not coming home from NY for the 1st time!
Travis and Nicole are doing their own 1st Christmas in their new house.
So, we are meeting at Travis and Nicoles' in the early afternoon to get together with our kids and exchange gifts. And then heading out to eat Chinese!
So, I still don't really need to put the tree up??! I probably will, but Todd doesn't care, and it is always my job. Maybe after I sleep in a day, or when I am stranded in after one of the 3 storms forcasted to hit us this week!
|I work Christmas Eve and Day so its always sometime after 5:00pm. Eve is Randy's family and its small chaos. His son, daughter, SO's and three grandchildren come over, food and then opening gifts. Everyone opens at once and paper flies and oohh and aahh's and putting together toys.
My family comes over after 5:00pm on Christmas day and its around 20-25 people...in my house. Its big chaos then. Again its food and opening gifts. Again, everyone opens at once, paper flies everywhere and its oohh and aahh's and putting together toys. As paper is flying I hold a bag and get hit from every direction so that nothing gets lost in the paper mess.
Its fun but stressful as everyone comes to my house...and I work both days. Dh gets cleaning duties and he's a guy and NEVER gets it right. But he tries so I give him points for that.
|Love this thread!
My family Christmas memories were from my younger years since my father died young. After his death Christmas wasn't all that special. The happiest memories I have are when my father would take me to visit Santa at the local deparment store. One year I was so sick but didn't tell anyone, I wasn't going to miss my opportunity! Well, Santa paid the price. I hope they have replacement suits. I also remember throwing up on my beautiful white rabbit muff. I was crushed. The years I was healthy, which were few, after the Santa visit Dad and I would view the window displays at the store......by today's standards pretty tame, but back then they were magical with their moving dolls and beautiful decorations. Inside the department store the Christmas tree was so tall it seemed to reach heaven.
After getting married Paul and I were expected to spend Christmas morning with my mother, brothers and their wives and very young children. We'd arrive after initial madness since we lived an hour or more drive from them. One year we spent Christmas Eve night and got to experience first hand the madness of opening presents at dawn when parents have spent the whole night previously assembling toys and wrapping presents. I saw my husband's face and knew, it was a good thing we never had kids!
Now that we live much further away, the nieces and nephews are grown and moved away as well, there's no need for us to be going to Denver for Christmas. This has allowed us to develop our own rituals.
Usually right before Christmas I do the visit the shut-ins with the priest and other ladies. We are also busy with delivering gifts to the needy children. So many have so very, very little.
2 Days before Christmas Paul bakes his sugar cookies. He makes a boat load and I help decorate them, that's it. I no longer roll dough or cut out dough. Christmas Eve is church for me and Paul sets up the luminarias or farolitos......the candle in the paper bag laterns so popular in the Southwest. It takes him days assembling the bags, sand, candles, hours setting them up outside and then lighting them. When I come home from church, it is so beautiful to see these lights burning.........peacefully. Ali understands.
Christmas a.m. is more church for me then come home and open presents and drink champagne. Breakfast/Brunch/Lunch ??? is always interesting after drinking. Dinner is either leg of lamb or Rib Roast.
New Year's Day I skip church (shhhhhh) so Paul and I can watch the Rose Parade! While he has attended the parade when living in Calif, I always dreamed some day I would too. Doesn't look like it now, but TV coverage is pretty good on HGTV. And like Christmas day, we drink champagne, actually mimosas and eat fruit cake. Once again, brunch after the champagne is......curious. Alas too much sugar and alcohol is bad for my glucose reading. It's not unsual for me to retire for a nap after brunch. It would be better if I went for a walk......maybe I'll try this year.
|My husband is Polish so for the past 24 years we have been celebrating Christmas the Polish way. Christmas Eve we have a big Polish meal, which we started making 3 days prior to the 24th. We invite all our friends and family over, between 20 and 30 people. We have dinner when the sun goes down. We have several courses, starting with soup, either Mushroom or Tomato. Then we have Pierogi, either Sauerkraut or Peach, sometimes blueberry. We then have Polish Sausage and finish the meal off with Sweet Bread. The evening usually lasts until Midnight. We play cards in the house after dinner, or gather around the fireplace. No tv is on but the Christmas Music is playing. After everyone leaves, my husband and I exchange gifts as our young adult children go to bed. Christmas Morning we sleep in, usually until 9:00 am, at which time we have coffee or what not, open gifts, then have breakfast. We usually eat more Pierogi for breakfast, at least the Peach ones. In the afternoon, we take the girls to the school where they can run free, then a nap is in order. For Christmas dinner, we have Prime Rib Roast, sweet potatoes, white potatoes and a vegetable. Nothing special, but I always say Christmas is what you make it.|
|These are great!!
Keep them coming
|Christmas Eve is at Billy's Mom's house with entire family.
We have a Turkey Dinner, followed by the opening of the presents, which is a scary thing. My Mother in Law doesn't have a very big house, but we all try to squish into the Living Room so we can all see each other's presents when they open them. My Nephew, who is 26 dresses as Santa and hands out all the presents. Then the chaos begins.
After the presents are opened, we stuff ourselves with some more food for Dessert.
Christmas Day is just us. The kids wake up and open their presents from Santa.... and usually a quiet day on the couch and a nice dinner.
|I'm really enjoying this thread, too. I'm on my own this Christmas but in touch with family and friends.|
|Many long years ago Hubby with his white beard would dress up as Santa
amd at the time we only had g/sons (4) and our kids would invite their friends and kids (also only boys) to their homes and I would go out and buy and wrap a bunch of dinky toys and then Don and I would go house to house and Don would reach into his big red bag and give them each a toy . I think those were the best christmas eves that I remember
I remember one little boy Adam .. after Don left he ran to the window and with much awe in his voice said .. Oh look theres Santa and he was pointing up in the sky (he really thought he could see Santa ). One of our g/sons was about 4 years old and he was sitting on Santas knee and looked down and said your my grandpa those are his gloves
|We're starting a new tradition this year.
We are going to watch George Washington cross the Delaware River, similar to what you see in this painting:
The reenactment at Washington's Crossing Park used to be held early in the morning, which is why we never attended before. This year it is at 1:30 pm. I guess it's a more family-friendly time of day.
|Brrr - that looks cold!
The river isn't frozen? It looks like there are ice chunks in the picture.
|This is wonderfull, so lovely to read how Christmas is celebrated all over the world. Keep them coming too.
I suppose the other question is what has been handed down say from parents or even grand parents that you still keep going in your family?
Deb that looks exciting brrr cold too, from Sunny Australia where the Temp has just hit 34 C. Air Con on and sheepies all sprawled out on the tiled floor SNORE
|The Delaware River hasn't frozen in December as long as I can remember. Sometimes in mid-January to February we have ice, but I have never seen the river completely frozen.|
|When I was growing up there where 6 of us kids in the family. We always put the Fresh Christmas Tree up on my Birthday Dec 22nd. We would have dinner/cake/up went the tree. All of my brothers/sisters looked forward to my birthday. My Dad used to over "tinsel" the tree and that became his trademark. My Dad passed in 2003, but all the grandsons over tinsel their tree in his memory to this day. Anyway, Christmas morning we kids would rise early and go down on the stairs and stare down at the Christmas tree with all the gifts. We would send my youngest sister in to wake my parents and asked if we could open our gifts. Mom/Dad always said "yes." We opened one gift at a time so all could see what we received. After gift opening off to 8:00 mass. We then came home and started dinner for 1:00..always turkey. We always had the best Christmas as kids.
As I was raising my children, the children spend Christmas Eve day with their other parent and for Christmas Eve dinner I would make lasagna. After dinner we would watch a Christmas movie and at bedtime I would read the Night Before Christmas, then everyone would go to bed. Kids would get up early, open presents, go to church, go to my parents, hubby's parents and then finally back home for a late dinner that we made.M\The children are all grown now, two in another state. Both sets of Parents have passed. So quieter Christmases, but great memories. Of course we had the two kids here with us and we can't forget the crazy 3 dogs and one old but silly cat.
Merry Christmas Everybody!
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