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Friday, December 23, 2011

Erin at Seven Little Australians and Counting- Christmas Guest Post Series day 5!

Today's the last day of our guest posts and it comes from Erin all the way in Australia from Seven little Australians and Counting.Erin is a neat homeschooling mama from Australia. I love reading her blog and learning about what life is like in another country. Make sure and stop by her page and check it out :) I hope you have all enjoyed reading these as much as I have. I've learned so much about all the various traditions and customs there are for Christmas but the most important one of the m all,celebrating the birth of King and Savior Jesus Christ! Merry Christmas to you all!

Thank you Elia for inviting me to join in your Christmas Traditions series, I am honored.

My husband and I were both blessed to have been raised in practicing Catholic families, celebrating Christmas with the emphasis on the Christ Child is intrinsic to both of us. Naturally we both bought a few childhood traditions to our marriage, couple with new ones we have created our own unique family traditions.

Advent in our home is a time of anticipation, heightened by Advent wreaths, calendars, Christmas cribs, tree and books and the celebration of a couple of Feast days including the Feast of St Nicholas. This waiting period culminates with Christmas itself.

Christmas in Australia falls in the height of Summer, some Christmases our temperatures can soar as high as 44 Celsius/111 Fahrenheit. In our town which is not far from the beach, the majority of the residents move for the six weeks of the school holidays to the beach and spend their Christmas morning in a tent or beach shack.

Most Christmases we spend at home with our immediate family, although some years we join in large extended family parties. Christmas Eve we attend the Vigil Mass at 6pm; this year we will be blessed to have five of our children participating in the various roles of; choir, reader and servers. After Mass we drive around our town looking at Christmas lights. The children head to bed as soon as we arrive home, but alas, Mum and Dad rarely make it before midnight, as inevitably there are always last minute preparations.

On Christmas morning the children run in to wake us, eager to exclaim that the Christ Child is in His crib, and of course to begin present opening, which begins as soon as all are awake, some with the help of others; We enjoy a leisurely breakfast sometime towards mid-morning, usually a sugary cereal or yoghurt, a treat that we normally do not have. Then begins playtime for the children and Dad and last minute lunch preparation for Mum. Although I always do most preparation and baking on Christmas Eve.

Many Australians roots originate in England and the Traditional English Christmas of roast dinners and plum pudding still linger or at least a variation. Times 'are a changin' though, with the influence of our multiculturalism and finally concession to our heat. Australian family favourites can be varied and can include the traditional, seafood, salads or ethnic dishes. Some families main meal is lunch, some dinner or some enjoy both;)

In our home, we celebrate with lunch and mostly chose to have a variety of salads and an array of three different cold meats; ham, turkey and silverside. Our salads include; potato and rice salad, beetroot, corn and pineapple. Truthfully though our children feel that the lunch is just really an token gesture towards the important part, the dessert! Pavlova, cheesecake, trifle, golden syrup pudding, jellies and custard is the food they really want.
During desert we often place a candle in the pudding and sing "Happy Birthday" to the Christ Child.

Our afternoons are leisurely as in typical Christmas fashion we always overindulge, we take it easy and enjoy watching the children play with their gifts. By dinner we simply enjoy leftovers and reflect on another peaceful Christmas.


Jennifer Gregory Miller said...

I'm enjoying reading your menu -- cold meats are definitely a different menu than up in the Northern Hemisphere, where we're drinking mulled wine and having warm, cozy meals.

Judy said...

What a beautiful image you have given us of your family Christmases! And how nice to see you "guesting" on another blog:)
We have been visiting a website that teaches about Christmas customs in other lands...and we just read about "Australia Christmas" the other day; of course, we chose that country because of our wonderful blogging friends who live there! Peace and JOY of Christ to you and your family...this Christmas, and always, Erin!

Bridget said...

Merry Christmas! In Michigan we consider it balmy, shorts wearing weather if it's in the upper 30s! Love hearing about your summer Christmas Erin.

Erin said...

Thank you for inviting me to join in.

Hi Judy and Jenn:)
Yes I imagine very different to the Northern Hemisphere.
Judy, interested to know what you actually read?

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