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Holiday Traditions? Read 1548 times

Ara

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Holiday Traditions?
« on: December 04, 2013, 12:57:26 pm »
I was having a great conversation with Krystal last night and it got me thinking that it would be fun to hear what everyone does for the holiday season! We seem to live in a lot of different parts of the world and everyone has their own traditions and holidays, so what are yours? Seasonal foods? Family gathering? Tree or no tree? Do you love the season or sit in the corner scowling at cocoa drinkers? If you don't partake in any holiday during the winter, do you do anything else special for yourself? Winter traditions perhaps? A fancy brew of cocoa perhaps? You'll notice I want cocoa...

 :ninja: The cocoa ninja, out to take your cocoa and bring it to me.



Lightning

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Re: Holiday Traditions?
« Reply #1 on: December 07, 2013, 10:32:49 am »
mine's pretty stereotypical. we put up a tree, lights occasionally, and we make sure to watch national lampoon's christmas vacation at least once. (ialsowatchalltheclaymationchristmasmoviesssshhhhhh).

i am, however, a huge stickler for not playing christmas music that's done by any of the current/living artists. i do like all the christmas oldies though, they're awesome.

oh and i do reddit's ridiculously huge secret santa gift exchange. this is my second year doing it! i'm pretty excited. i think they reached their record of 100,000 participants this year.

Ara

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Re: Holiday Traditions?
« Reply #2 on: December 08, 2013, 02:40:13 am »
I didn't even know Reddit did a gift exchange.. I heard about a program where people in different countries exchange gifts but I forgot to look it up this year.

So what christmas album is your favorite then? What would you recommend to those of us that are lacking in holiday music?

Krystal Itzume

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Re: Holiday Traditions?
« Reply #3 on: December 08, 2013, 03:15:16 am »
I tend to listen to modern reinterpretations of Christmas music myself, and Trans-Siberian Orchestra. Carol of the Bells is one of the best songs, ever. And since I update myself with the modern groups, I can't really suggest others on a "yearly" basis. I like Lindsey Stirling and Pentatonix this year.

Oddly enough, I don't celebrate Christmas, though. Long story short, I'm an atheist, so instead I celebrate the Saturnalia as an expression for my love of all things Roman. And Christmas is now Whomas, aka FEELSMAS.

But no, Saturnalia is my "Winter Tradition" that I have been working on for three-ish years now. It begins December 17th and lasts to December 22nd. I generally celebrate it with mulled wine and a snack table, though the snack table plays a dual role as being the "bribery table" so I get my school work done. My mom bought me special, carnival glass goblets which I tend to reserve for these special holidays. I make sure to watch Rome, and Roman-related things (I have got to get my hands on Imperium: Nero)...I think I've seen that show at least 10 times now. I try to eat food with Roman-ish ingredients, such as chickpeas and olives and garlic. I think garlic is Roman. I'll do research another day. I lounge around in my stolas. I read Cicero and Octavius, and anything else Roman-related. Ah, the Res Gestae! The Philipics (actually I read those more around the Ides, because...just more appropriate. Oh, Antony!)

I also make sure to have my small little bust of Augustus out front and center, and I remember and respect him, one of my many idols.

And then comes FEELSMAS, when we get a new Doctor Who episode, and more people die, and I am overwhelmed with feels, because nothing ever goes right for the Doctor on Christmas and that's not fair. It's just not fair.

My music for this year:

Pentatonix Carol of the Bells
Pentatonix Angels We Have Heard On High
Lindsey Stirling Silent Night
The Piano Guys Carol of the Bells (I have a favorite song)
Trans-Siberian Orchestra Carol of the Bells
Trans-Siberian Orchestra Old City Bar
Vienna Teng Atheist Christmas Carol
« Last Edit: December 08, 2013, 03:27:33 am by Krystal Itzume »

Lightning

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Re: Holiday Traditions?
« Reply #4 on: December 08, 2013, 06:20:36 am »
this might sound cliched but FRANK SINATRA. his christmas album is great, but i'm a sucker for his stuff in general.

elvis has some pretty sweet christmas songs too.

the beach boys' the little saint nick is probably my favorite christmas song. it's damn good.

and dudeeeeee trans siberian orchestra is awesomeeeee. i can't believe i forgot about them.

Jill the Ripper

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Re: Holiday Traditions?
« Reply #5 on: December 08, 2013, 08:52:47 am »
none of your music suggestions have Boney M.  :c

my personal favourite is
mary's boy child/oh my lord.

my mum used to play their greatest hits all day and i loved it. i have the (one of them anyways) album on my ipod~

apart from boney m the only other tradition my family does is copious amounts of seafood (blerghhhh) and a swim in a pool/beach if there's one nearby~

Pach_Work

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Re: Holiday Traditions?
« Reply #6 on: December 11, 2013, 10:02:58 pm »
Krystal- I love Pentatonix! They are so amazing. You should listen to their version of Little Drummer Boy. Sooo pretty.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qJ_MGWio-vc

So far my family's Christmas traditions have changed, but there are some things that remain such as Christmas dinner and cinnamon pancakes Christmas morning! My mom goes insane with decorations around the house, we have THREE trees. Not sure why we need THREE but it certainly brings the spirit in all of the house, which I love.

We will either stay home in Alabama, or venture to my Aunt's in VA, where we usually see some snow! Snow is rare down south but every once and a while we'll have a white Christmas. Christmas Eve all the women in my family go shopping to get last minute gifts, and my sister and I babysit my cousin. Usually there is a Star Wars marathon on so we watch that while snacking on home made candy. It really is the best time of year. I just love being around family, even if our traditions are scarce.


Krystal Itzume

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Re: Holiday Traditions?
« Reply #7 on: December 11, 2013, 10:28:12 pm »
Aaah! Thank you, I didn't know this song by Pentatonix existed. I love "The Little Drummer Boy" but for so many nostalgia reasons. And cinnamon pancakes sound divine. Enjoy them for me!

Peregrine

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Re: Holiday Traditions?
« Reply #8 on: December 12, 2013, 04:30:19 am »
Welll... Christmas is pretty traditional for me and has been since forever. My dad is very religious (I feel I am, but he's at another level). I grew up with Christmas being about Christ - My mom kept some of the "wonder" of Santa Clause, but I grew up knowing it was pretend and fun make-believe (Along with The Easter Bunny, the Tooth Fairy, etc) and got in trouble a few times because I'm a big mouth and insisted how right I was... sigh.

Anyway... We do the whole Family go and hack down a tree together, go sledding, drink hot Chocolate and have soggy pre-prepared sandwiches before venturing off the mountain to put up said tree.

When I was young and all my growing up years we made dozens and dozens of pans of cinnamon rolls to give to neighbors, friends and businesses in town. I mean 50+ pans with walnuts, green tinted coconut shavings sprinkled on top, with glaze and maraschino cherry halves at the center of each cinnamon roll. I myself like it with just the nuts and glaze and not the "Christmasy" toppings and always made sure at least one pan we kept for ourselves didn't have the stuff on top. My very favorite thing was getting to punch down the dough between risings. I still make them, but not every Christmas I choose other treats to give now.

We always had a family party on Christmas Eve of some kind at my grandparents before they died and then my aunts house when we're there. We talk, eat, play games - we are a big board game family. We always did a cousin gift exchange which my siblings and I do now with our kids. My sisters and I still do a party on Christmas Eve since we all live in the same town away from our parents. After the party we go home, and sleepily read the Nativity from the scriptures before getting to hang our stockings on the couches to get filled and have our special presents set around them.

In the morning, we're aloud to look at our stocking stuff but everyone has to be awake before we can open presents under the tree. Then we always choose if we're going oldest to youngest or visa versa and everyone watches as everyone opens their presents and we go around and around until they are all open and then we make a giant breakfast - eggs, bacon, pan-cakes, waffles, sausage, toast, juice, breakfast casserole, etc. whatever we feel like that year.

About mid-afternoon we get to call to see if family wants to come over or us go there and we show each other stuff and then eat dinner and play more board games or sleep... haha.

My husbands family was big into Santa, since his Dad dressed up as him and would bring presents and stuff to the family on Christmas Eve. Now we have a "Santa Grandpa" who helps to bring us presents- he has to send them to us now since we don't live close, but we still sometimes spend Christmas with one of our families so it's been fun, despite the fact my daughters recognize him, to have him dress up and give them the special treats he picks for them.

We always pick some time to go out at night and drive around to the neighborhoods that really go to town with decorating and enjoy the lights.

As for music - I'm a fan of the old classics, and admittedly a lot of the harmonious religious tunes. Some of my favorites that I've been listening to this year:

Pentatonix- Little Drummer Boy, Carol of the Bells, O Come O Come Emmanuel, Angels We have Heard on High, O Holy Night, Go Tell it on the Mountain
MercyMe- I heard the Bells on Christmas Day
Gloriana- O Holy Night
Tracy Chapman - O Holy Night (I love this one, can you tell?)
Perry Como - Home for the Holidays
Etta James - This time of year
Dean Martin - Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow
Nat King Cole - O Come All Ye Faithful
Elvis Presley - Here Comes Santa Claus, Blue Christmas
Burl Ives - A Holly Jolly Christmas
Sting - I Saw three Ships
Bing Crosby- White Christmas

The list really could go on and on...

Ara

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Re: Holiday Traditions?
« Reply #9 on: December 15, 2013, 04:52:17 pm »
Your replies have been really interesting! And helped me build a holiday music list!

When I lived in states with my family we did christmas with the tree and special cocoa mugs and stockings. After I moved I realized that if I wanted christmas I'd have to do it myself (which is to say, my mom did not suddenly make the decorations happen every year anymore). The last few years we've also made a great tradition out of watching the Lord of the Rings trilogy on christmas eve. We also do presents on the 24th and make a bunch of food to eat buffet style throughout the day.

Here in Sweden it's really popular to get a pretty paper star and hang it in the window with a light in it. I love those!

They can have five or seven points and come in all sorts of colors and sizes. Some you hang and some have stands. I think they might be my favorite christmas decoration because they look so nice in everyone's windows.

Krystal Itzume

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Re: Holiday Traditions?
« Reply #10 on: December 16, 2013, 02:47:30 am »
Ara! Those stars are awesome. I've seen them now and again here in the states, but not with any great frequency. I've always loved their shape--actually part of the reason I got one of my tattoos the way I did, though it started out as a "mistake" of the artist on the paper (not a mistake on the skin, thank god).

My "bribery"/Saturnalia tables for reference.

Last Year
Yes. Horror movies and horror games. I also have an obsession with hot chocolate and Xena/Hercules. For some reason that was appropriate enough to be "Saturnalia"-ish, even though it is Greek. And my goblet.

This Year
Augustus and Dandilion (the lion) stand in for Roman stuff this year, and the wine (hidden behind the rum and besides the Welch's--another obsession of mine). Seeing as I was introduced to Doctor Who this year, stuff from that is obviously there, too.

And fun story: Verse asked if I ever wrote to Santa. I did. I wanted chocolate-covered cherries.

Took Santa long enough.


Also, I forgot one tradition I was reminded of when conversing with brother: Final Fantasy Tactics on New Years Eve, whilst playing a dubstep podcast. You all have no idea how fun that is, and I pray you never see how irrationally angry I get at a certain character in that game *coughALGUScough*. This has been going on for four years (?)now, and it started just because me and my brother are pitiful homebodies and Tactics was there.

Following that is eating black-eyed peas on New Years day for good luck, or something.
« Last Edit: December 16, 2013, 03:01:00 am by Krystal Itzume »