Every time I hear the word tradition – the song from Fiddler on the Roof plays in my mind.
Traditions can be good to keep and fun to do. Two of the things we enjoy are going to the annual Christkindl Market held at our City Hall which is turned into a beautiful German-style Christmas market (albeit, much smaller than in cities like Stuttgart or Munich) and watching an outdoor Nativity Pageant preformed by a local church.
Taking my grandson to see the toy train village and meeting friends is part of the fun. I love supporting Canadian artisans and vendors. Helping local and small businesses has always been important to me.
We dressed warmly and brought blankets to watch the Nativity play in the subfreezing night air. It brings tears to my eyes to hear the story of Christ’s birth. It gives me goosebumps when they conclude the play with (a man playing the part of) the risen Saviour entering through the stone gateway, depicting the reason for His coming–because He loves everyone and brings peace to our hearts.
Another tradition we enjoy during the holidays is driving around our neighbourhood after dark to be awed by all the dazzling lights people adorn their homes and trees with. Some folks go all out and make it look spectacular; extravagant perhaps, but I still love it! If the weather isn’t bitter cold we take a little evening stroll through Victoria Park to enjoy the beautiful festival of lights.
My favourite tradition is our family gathering for Christmas Eve and going to the Candlelight Service to sing the beloved, traditional Christmas carols. Our dance group has done many processions and pageants over the years. One of my favourites is doing a dance processional with candles to Carol of the Bells. One year we were part of a Christmas musical on 100 Huntley Street TV show–dancing angels.
Sleeping in on Christmas morning and staying in my PJs till after brunch is so relaxing after the holiday rush. No presents to open because we already opened them on Christmas Eve (a German tradition that I thought my mom invented because we love sleeping in on holidays). Time to kickback and relax, enjoy the peacefulness of a quiet day at home Or a leisurely afternoon drive on the back roads to visit our grandchildren.
This morning I woke up to the sound of Christmas melodies echoing through the house. Brunch was ready and the smell of fresh coffee lured me out of bed. Thanks to my thoughtful hubby!
As children we found out that our Canadian friends open their gifts on Christmas Day. They all thought we were lucky that Santa came to our place first. One year we asked if we could celebrate the Canadian way, but when Christmas Eve arrived, my brother and I couldn’t wait and we decided to celebrate the German way after all. Waiting a whole year is hard enough.
Watching the timeless A Christmas Carol and the heart-warming It’s a Wonderful Life while snuggled up on the sofa with a cup of herbal tea and Christmas cookies is something I’ve always looked forward to.