Friday, December 27, 2013

Annandag Jul: The Other Day of Christmas

Happy Friday to you all! We enjoyed THREE days of Christmas!  Not a french hen in sight, though. This was the first year we celebrated the Swedish tradition of Annandag Jul, “The Other Day of Christmas.” Except we celebrated it American style..yeah, try to keep up.  I'm trying to be brief...(I see those eyes rolling!)

Long time readers know that Swedes celebrate Christmas on Christmas Eve. We do this with all the Colorado contingent of our family and it's a big group. My Swissie has a great house, perfectly designed to host a party this size, and she and Windex (her husband, please see nickname tab above for explanation and intro to him) do a marvelous job. It was a truly special time. Thanks again to both of you.

Being Swedish and having that big celebration with my family on the 24th works out perfectly, because then we can always spend Christmas Day with The Engineer's family, American style. We really do try to incorporate both cultures in our family of four's traditions that we are creating as we raise them.

However, this year, his sister didn't have her kids until yesterday, so we postponed. That meant that American Christmas would be on the 26th, Annandag Jul.  Swedes really take three days to celebrate the birth of the Christ Child, each day having different traditions.

What this also meant was that for the first time since OYT was three and I had the stomach flu, our family of four (which I kept referring to as our nuclear family – but people didn't like that term, something about weapons of mass destruction was the objection, and wanted to just call it “our family” so we did a bit of both, depending on to whom we were trying to explain ourselves.)

OYT, appreciator of all things Christmas especially the traditions, went all out helping me plan our day. The Engineer and The Transporter stuck around long enough to make sure we had snow crab for dinner, then left with, “Whatever. I want some time to do my own thing, too, though.”

Here's a list of what we tried for our first family Christmas:

Hot chocolate while opening presents
Peppermint tea with candy canes available at all times
French toast with bacon for breakfast
Lighting all the candles I decorated with
Free time
The Charlie Brown Christmas Special
Apples to Apples
Left-over Swedish Christmas food for lunch
The new Veggie Tales movie “Merry Larry and The True Light of Christmas” (narrated by Uncle Si of Duck Dynasty – he's HILARIOUS)
Snow Crab for dinner
Movie together all four of us in the evening

We had a great day, and the only things that didn't happen were Apples to Apples and the movie. By the time we finished crab legs and Uncle Si, it was 10:30 and all of us were droopy.

As to Annandag Jul, that was of course a great day as well. On both sides of the family, we just enjoy each others' company so much. This lot of cousins are a bit older, 23, 22, and 17. They've taught my boys a lot of useful skills over the years, like how to turn a golf club into a LARP (live action role play) weapon, how to play card games like the ones the Big Bang gang plays, and of course, video game strategy. They have similar interests, which makes it all just flow.

While some of us watched Man of Steel (I may have to write my first movie review so strong is my opinion) others did a puzzle, which is another tradition. Day turned into night quickly, and as we drove home, I counted my blessings. Too many to count.

How was your holiday? Want to share a favorite part?


P.S If you want to know more about the Veggie Movie. 52 second official trailer.


Andrew Leon said...

We've kind of let Veggie Tales fade away. The videos from the last few years have just been so poor in comparison to the early stuff, I just quit getting them.

I hope your MoS opinion is that it was a piece of garbage.

We got Munchkin this year for Christmas, and it has become a family obsession. Hilarious game!

Brian Miller said...

french toast and bacon....i wanna be swedish....smiles...we played chess as well...i found my old wood board from high school.....

Rachel said...

I made pancakes that I didn't burn! I'm adjusting to a much smaller kitchen and buying new (cheaper) brands of foods and the different organization of the kitchen, so my (already poor) cooking skills have been pretty... terrible. The best thing I've made is a frozen pizza that I put in the oven for 12 minutes and even that was a little crispy. (Oops.) Since I messed up the pancakes last time, I was pretty proud the only thing I burned was myself. haha That wasn't the best part- just easiest to explain.

Also, to reply to your comment that replied to mine on that one post, I do have a subscribe my email gadget. It's on the left hand side, between my followers and my NaBloPoMo badge. (My sidebars are a bit messy right now but I plan on fixing that soon, now that I have a laptop with reliable internet connection. haha)

JoJo said...

Sounds like you've incorporated both cultures quite well! Did you make glogg?

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Tina - well that sounds like a wonderful mix of traditions - and it continues on today .... I seem to think.

I do love the traditions of Christmas and being involved ... we had a glorious time - the sun shone, we had a salad lunch, champagne with prezzies .. then a walk with the dog, sort the Shetland out ... puzzles and tea and cake - then smoked salmon, a turkey dinner and all trimmings, and a brandied Christmas pud .. and a taxi home.

Have a happy day today .. your Christmas three days sounds just lovely .. cheers Hils

Briane said...

So was it a chess tournament? And who won?

Your extra Xmas sounds great. Very cozy.

PS I expect to read the story today.

Jeremy [Retro] said...

typical guy question was the bacon in the french toast, like stuffed or was it on the side... it makes me wonder, one way would be so awesome. also it gives me a great idea, happy thoughts to you and your family.

Jo said...

Sounds like a good time was had by all. We had a relatively quiet day with my Kir Royales and turkey with Christmas pudding in the evening. Boxing Day (next day) was fun with a friend coming to dinner.

Anonymous said...

My wife's family is Dutch-American, and we do the same thing -- celebrate the 24th with the entire family. Apples to Apples is a great game! We tried the Awkward Family Photo game this year, and it was freakin' hilarious.

klahanie said...

Hi Tina,

My former spouse is Belgian. In Belgium, they also celebrate Christmas on Christmas Eve. Which meant, on Christmas Day, it was leftovers.

You have the best of both worlds. The blending of both cultures is a wonderful idea. It seems a veritable smorgasbord in your house.

You had a nice holiday and that's a joyous outcome. I am blessed and I had a very quiet Christmas Day.

And now for the Veggie Movie....

Take care, Tina.

Gary :)