Got home yesterday from having spent Christmas with my parents and sister. I arrived there in the evening of the 22nd (just in time for dinner). Then we had our perfectly traditional Christmas, the way we do it exactly every year.
December 23rd: Dress the Christmas Tree while listening to Christmas songs, unpacking the majority of the Christmas ornaments and put them all over the house. The day ends with a Christmas dinner and then hot wine (glögg) in front of the TV.
December 24th: This is Christmas :) Waking up my sister and I look at what we got in our stockings. Nowadays it's usually just sweets :P I actually asked my sister if we should retire our stockings this year, but she said no :P Then we go and listen to my sister and some of the people from the orchestra play Christmas songs outside the town hall.
When we get back home we all get ready. Mum and Dad start working on some parts of the dinner and my sister and I usually peel almonds and set up the hot wine in the living room. The grandparents arrive around 2.30pm and we put all the presents under the tree. 3pm most of Sweden is seated in front of their TVs to watch Donald Duck :P I'm not kidding. Then there's dinner. We usually switch to the Danish channel to watch their version of Donald Duck (some parts are different) while Mum and Dad prepare the food. Then there's the appetizer: small platter of a little bit of everything from the traditional Christmas dinner. The main course is the horror of each year: stockfish (lutfisk). Absolutely horrifying to me, but everyone else likes it. Then there's the traditional porridge (rice pudding) after that. We all move from the dining table to the sofa after helping to clean up. My sister and I start putting out the Christmas sweets on the dining table while the adults talk. Around 7.30pm my sister goes upstairs to put on the Santa costume and when she comes back downstairs she starts handing out the presents from under the tree. When all gifts are handed out (even one or two for the dog) we all start unwrapping (my favourite part). My favourite gifts this year was my all-new TV and router for wireless internet :) After all the unwrapping is done, we put away the presents in bags so that they can easily bring them home, and then we throw out all the wrapping paper. Then there's sweets and talking until the grandparents decide it's time to go home.
December 25th-26th: Our own Christmas traditions continue on to Christmas Day and Boxing Day with the whole family sitting around the dining table in the living room playing board games all day long while eating Christmas sweets. The games we play each year are Mah Jong, Ticket to Ride and Svea Rike :) I never win at any board games ever, but it's fun anyway.
So that's my traditional Christmas :) Today I'm taking the train north to see Toni and spend New Years with him. Blogging may be scarce then ;)