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Thursday, December 21, 2017

There's no place like home for the holidays...

During a couple times in my life, I had the opportunity to be away from home at Christmastime.  I found the experience rather interesting, because I saw how other people decorated their homes for the holidays as well as other traditions that were local to the area.  While there are a few similarities, there were also some interesting differences.

For example, it was in the Tyrolian area of Italy, that for the first time I saw wreaths hung horizontally rather than vertically.

In Munich at the Marienplatz is where the amazing Christmas market can be found. We actually saw Saint Nicholas with his long robes walking around as the children ran up to him and gave him hugs.  Christmas in Munich was magical.

One of the more interesting traditions was the Christmas Ship Festival in Seattle.  We boarded a boat for a party on Lake Washington and saw all the decorated boats.   It was an amazing night to see all the boats lit up.

It was in England, where I first saw Christmas crackers.  My usually reserved colleagues seemed to have no reservations about opening their crackers and wearing silly paper crowns on their heads.

Some of the other decorations I've learned about...

In China they use paper garlands, lanterns and flowers to adorn their trees.   In Australia, there are often sea shells and eucalyptus leaves.  In Ukraine, they add spiders and spiderwebs... hum.

Candles in the windows are common in Ireland.

This was fun to read:
Weird & Wonderful Christmas Decorations Around The World

I'm sure, like your family, mine has had special decorations that hold meaning.   My mother always hung a little elf from the chandelier in our foyer.  Through the years he has lost his hat and and his hair has become disheveled, but when I see the little elf I think of Christmases long ago when my mother lovingly decorated our home and created beautiful memories.   I have the elf today and he is hanging on the mantel over the fireplace.

What special traditions does your family have?

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