‘Twas a Merry Christmas

Whew!  It almost seems like such a long time since I have updated this blog.  After moving to our new house 2 weekends ago, most of my time has been spent cleaning and fixing up the new place….and we are not finished yet.  With Christmas just around the corner, I found myself even busier.  Needless to say, life happened.

I will have a separate post regarding the house.  Meanwhile, here’s how we spent our Christmas.

On Christmas day, we drove to my in-laws’ place in Moravia in this weather.

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Just looking at the frozen fog was enough to frighten me a bit, but it really is a way of life over here.  Everything seemed normal.

That same day, my husband’s brother and his family also came.  It  was a time for opening the gifts from Ježíšek (Little Jesus).  Instead of Santa, Czechs believe that Ježíšek is the one bringing gifts.  In our family, the children were asked to go with Grandpa and watch a pohadka (fairytale).

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Meanwhile, the adults prepared the gifts and staged the room to appear like Ježíšek just left.  This was done by opening one window and tolling the bell.  When the children ran to the living room, they found presents under the tree.

Since they were too young to read, the adults helped tell them who the presents were for and they distributed the gifts.

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Everyone was then busy opening their presents.

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My little boy was very happy with the biggest gift he got from Ježíšek (a.k.a. grandma) – a toy digger.

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At around 5pm that same day, we went to my husband’s grandparents to celebrate with the rest of the family.

There was another set of presents to open.  But the best part was just bonding with the family.

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While the kids were busy distributing presents from the tree, the adults were doing their thing.

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The kids got toys, candies and chocolates, the men got wine…..

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…. or slivovice (plum liquor).

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No matter what generation, it is always a hit.

In one corner, I was chatting with my father-in-law and his mother.

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Although there are a lot of nice material gifts, I guess that the best gift of all is family.  Even though, my own Filipino family is too far away and I didn’t get to spend this Christmas with them, my Czech family provided me the necessary “warmth” I needed this winter season.

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13 thoughts on “‘Twas a Merry Christmas

  1. 68ghia December 27, 2012 / 12:51 pm

    Glad you had a good time with the family Grace 😉

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  2. Naomi Baltuck December 27, 2012 / 1:48 pm

    Merry Christmas from Seattle, Grace. So glad you and Jakob had a good one. Best wishes for the New Year!

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    • Grace December 29, 2012 / 4:32 pm

      Thanks, Naomi. I hope you had a great Christmas as well and I wish you and your family a prosperous New Year. 🙂

      Like

  3. crazytraintotinkytown December 27, 2012 / 2:39 pm

    Happy Holidays Grace! Looks like you had an amazing time. I have to say that the kids look like they’re having a ball and at the end of the day, that’s what it’s all about! What’s the new house like?

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    • Grace December 29, 2012 / 4:31 pm

      Thanks, CT! The new house is great. Although I haven’t seen the energy bill yet, I can already feel the savings. 🙂

      Like

  4. patinaandcompany December 27, 2012 / 4:04 pm

    What a lot of lovely family gatherings with many generations. You are so lucky to have so much family to share your little boy’s Christmas experiences with! The “Little Jesus” side of Christmas keeps the religious origins of the celebration front and centre more than Santa Clause, I’m sure!

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    • sss December 28, 2012 / 1:53 am

      During the Communist era (1948 – 1989) kids had to be told (on tv, at schools) that Christmas gifts very brought by Děda Mráz (Father Frost – as in Russia). After the Velvet Revolution (1989) the country immediately came back to Ješíšek (Little Jesus).

      Funny thing is that this belongs to only few remnants of religious habits in the Czech Republic as well as for example půlnoční (Midnight Mass on 24. December – all over the country people come to churches in the evening and sing christmas carols, most of these people don’t attend church during the rest of the year) because the Czech Republic is one of the most atheistic countries in Europe (or probably in the world as other non-catholic nations believe in super naturalism, ancestor worship, budhism or so).

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      • sss December 28, 2012 / 3:37 am

        I’m sorry, it should’ve been “Buddhism”. 🙂

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      • patinaandcompany December 28, 2012 / 3:25 pm

        Really–very interesting. I would never have expected the Czech Republic to be one of the most atheistic countries in the world/Europe! You certainly research your environment and family outings well!

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      • patinaandcompany December 28, 2012 / 3:27 pm

        Oh, just realized that wasn’t Grace commenting back, so my other comment doesn’t make sense! But thanks for that very interesting info!

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  5. iRuniBreathe December 27, 2012 / 7:08 pm

    Veselé Vánoce!
    Sounds like you had a good time, especially with the slivovice out!
    Did Mikulas also come to your house earlier this month?

    Like

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