Today’s post is a collab with another favourite blogger of mine – Jenny. We agreed on sharing our Christmas traditions, because she’s coming from a Chinese family, and I from Bulgarian one. We thought such post would be quite a fun way to get to know each other’s cultures better!
Basically the traditions in my family are interpretations of the Orthodox Christianity (although we are not strictly religious). On the 24th we gather for dinner and cook odd-number meat-free meals. It’s like appreciation of all the people who fast 40 days (I think) before Christmas. Example of such meals are obviously beans, potatoes, filled peppers or wine leaves with rice, dried fruits and pickled vegetables. And the most important piece of the festive dinner is the bread. Usually my grandmother is doing it, but this year I did it myself. We also hide a coin somewhere inside the bread, and whoever finds it will be the luckiest next year. When we finish our dinner we leave everything on the table as it is, so spirits can come and eat as well.
On Christmas morning we get up and open presents. After lunch I go to my boyfriend’s place to exchange gifts as well and then go to his cousin to celebrate her Birthday (I’m so sorry I wasn’t able to come this year, I know you are reading 😉 :D) ! And with that, Christmas is usually over.
However, this year was somehow different for me. It was the first time I actually enjoyed Christmas, felt happy and liberated. Spending Christmas at home has always been something I hated, because due to unfortunate family events, it was just… miserable. This year I decided not to go home, and bought my mom a ticket to come here with me instead.
We agreed not to exchange gifts, because first, her being with me was the gift, and second, because it would be difficult for her to bring something with her small luggage.
Do I feel sad that I haven’t got any designer bags, shoes, expensive make up palettes or a new phone to show you? Well, I’ve got some nice fluffy socks (from myself to myself) and I’m sure that counts.
Most importantly, I’ve got freedom and happiness. I was too scared that I’d feel lonely being away from home, but I’ve learned that Christmas can be celebrated anywhere in the world. And it’s not something that you buy, but something that you keep in your heart. Hope you enjoyed spending time with your family, because that’s the most valuable gift one could get!