Friday, December 25, 2009

Terrifying Santa, and I am Sporty Spice.

"Frosty the Snowman
is a fairytale they say
He was made of snow
but the children know
how he came to life one day."
-Frosty the Snowman

Christmas is coming to an end, and I feel like I wont be blogging much while I am in LA, so here goes.

Monday my brother and I went shopping and we had a nice time. I really haven't seen him enough since I moved out, and I want to stay an important part of his life and all that older-sisterly stuff. So anyway, we ate lunch at Red Robin and shopped for our parents gifts and he helped me pick some things out for Luke. :)

Monday night and Tuesday I had an epic Heroes-catchup day with my housemate Justin. We were behind by 5 episodes, and we watched all of them over the course of those two days. I also spent a good portion of Tuesday helping Luke and our other friend Alex Hinksman with a Christmas song that they kind of sprung on me - but, honestly, they wouldn't be some of my favorite people to make music with if we DIDN'T frantically work on things last minute over email, so I had fun writing lyrics for them and stuff.

Wednesday I went to work, and then (with my bags packed and ready for LA) I went to my parents' house, where I have been ever since. We've done a lot of really nice family things. This is probably the longest I have stayed here since I left. I watched some Firefly with my dad (he made fun of my new hat Nick bought me - it looks like Jayne's hat and he said I look like an idiot when I wear it. Firefly reference. He likes the hat xD). We made two big awesome meals for Christmas Eve and Christmas day (I tried Cornish Game Hen for the first time - it was hard for me to get past them just looking like baby chickens though) and we opened presents on Christmas Eve.

Okay, I feel like I have the only family in the world that does this, so I am going to explain how we do Christmas and ask all of you if anyone else did it this way, or if we're just weird. Because I know MOST people leave out milk and cookies and Santa comes in the night and when you wake up, there are your presents, waiting for you. And you open them in the morning. Like pretty much every Christmas movie out there tells you to.

MY family, however, opens our presents on Christmas Eve. We eat dinner, and then after dinner, we go into the living room with the tree and we start opening the presents, which have been sitting there all along. Except the main present, which Santa brings. And by "Santa", I mean, my parents literally had someone (usually a family friend or relative) dress up in our Santa suit (which I have only recently been shown, out in a box in the garage) and come over to our house. Sometimes he would bring a little bell to ring, and he'd always ask my brother and I if we'd been good that year, and he would never give me my present unless I sang him a Christmas song. Usually Frosty the Snowman. Or Rudolph.

And I'm going to admit to you something right now that I never told my parents - before the years when I recognized Santa as my cousin Korrie or our family friend Pete - Santa SCARED me. I sang him that Christmas song out of fear. Because when I was little, I thought I was meeting the REAL Santa, and that's a lot of pressure. I mean, what if he didn't like my songs? What if I forgot the words? And then after a certain age, when the dressed-up Santa was more for my brother and less for me (since I was a big girl and found out he wasn't real) -- THEN there was just a strange man in our house (this being the years my Dad got a coworker I didn't know to do it) and THAT was scary too. I couldn't even fully enjoy getting my presents because I was so concerned with figuring out who the Santa impostor WAS. I didn't want to sit on some person's lap and sing for my presents. Nick never had to sing.

I mean, yeah, the fake-Santa was always giving me a Tattoodles doll or a plastic art studio desk or an Easy Bake Oven, but he also was wearing a false beard and a hat and talked in a loud booming voice and demanded I sing when all I wanted to do was finish opening my presents.
So there you have it. I was scared of the jolly man in the red suit who'd been hired by my parents to force me to sing songs in exchange for gifts.

Well, then there was the year my DAD dressed up as Santa. That's when my parents just got lazy. That was probably the year Nick stopped buying it too.

Now I am almost 22 and Nick is pushing 17, and we don't hire a Santa anymore. My dad still signs some of my presents "To Tina, From Santa", but we all know the truth. Santa is our neighbor, my uncle, a coworker, my dad, each other, etc. Not to be cheesy, but Santa is that part in all of us that loves seeing the faces of our friends and family light up when they open our gifts. I think it was a good tradition, even though Santa scared the crap out of me. I had to EARN my Christmas presents. Maybe that's why I became a singer. I had to, for fear of Santa Claus.

I wonder if I will need to hire people to play Santa for my kids someday. Maybe I need to instill in them some good old fashioned Christmas anxiety. Or is this just a super weird tradition that should be left in the past? xD

In other news, my Mom was showing me old pictures the other day, and I found proof that I actually WAS Sporty Spice. Check out that track suit. Check out those SHOES.

Anyway, this has been a nice Christmas. I went to church with my family today, which I honestly probably haven't done since LAST Christmas, and tonight we saw "A Christmas Carol" together in 3D. Tomorrow we're going out for breakfast, and then it's off to California for me. :)

Merry Christmas, everyone.

Right, the point of the blog entry: Does ANYBODY else celebrate Christmas like we do?


j-net said...

We do always open presents on Christmas Eve in my family, but none of the traumatizing stranger in a Santa costume stuff. There was one year, I forget how old me and my brother were at the time, that one of my dad's friends came over dressed as Santa and all. Then a few days later, we found the costume in our parents' closet. I think that's when we stopped believing.

shannancy said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
shannancy said...

Oh wow.

Wow... That is one intense tradition. And that picture of you on Santa's lap, you look so frightened... Poor past you, I just want to give her a hug.

My family doesn't have too many traditions, except that each year we appoint a 'santa' to hand out all the gifts. It's normally me or my brother, or both of us. ^_^
And we have to sing for our presents as well. It's awesome.

I hope you have a really good time with Luke and I hope I get to see you in Disneyland!

Katie said...

Our family opens presents on Christmas Eve, and then "Santa" leaves the good presents under the tree for us in the morning. We do those presents and our stockings on Christmas day. I never knew it was weird that we did it that way while I was growing up.. But I'm seeing more and more that we're the Christmas minority. I like it though :)

Jen and Julz said...

I do! I do!

Except Santa didn't come to our house. We would go to a church service (the only one we would go to all year) around 3:30 on Christmas Eve and during that time Santa would visit. Once we came back from church, the presents from Santa would be under the tree and the stockings would be stuffed. We would sit through dinner, the kids buzzing with anticipation, and then we'd open presents.

I hated opening presents on Christmas Eve, I just wanted to wake up to presents.

c said...

We've always had most of our presents under the tree in the days/weeks leading up to Christmas, and those all said they were from my parents. When I was little my parents hid some of the gifts (usually the biggest/best ones) until Christmas morning, when those gifts that were from "Santa" were put under the tree (I still have no clue where in the house my parents hid 2 bikes & a basketball hoop until Christmas morning).
Also, my already shaky belief in Santa was confirmed when my mother accidentally made a comment insinuating that she knew what was inside of a gift, forgetting that it was one of the ones marked "FROM SANTA."
Now just about all of our gifts end up under the tree before Christmas morning, but my parents still write Santa on the tags of a few of them.

For many years now we've also had a tradition that my brother and I get to open one of our gifts on Christmas Eve. Its usually one of our smaller gifts so that we don't ruin all the fun of Christmas.
I think it was the only way my parents could get us to go to bed when we were little.

Melody said...

Fake Santas are terrifying. When I was four, I was traumatized by a Santa in the mall who told me flat-out that I was not going to get a puppy for Christmas. I cried for hours.

I think the whole having-a-pretend-Santa-come-over thing is a German tradition. Most things associated with Christmas (trees, Santa, etc) actually come from a German winter holiday that I think has essentially nothing to do with Jesus.

So I guess the point of this comment would be, Are you German?

Mandi said...

We open presents from each other on Christmas eve, then presents "from Santa" on Christmas morning. My youngest sibling is 11, but it's fun. :)

Ellie said...

I always had two christmases one with my mom and one with my dad's family so I kind of opened presents on both days. I never really had a santa problem except I never really believed in him because my Grandpa used to dress up as him for sick kids or something like that so whenever my parents would take me and my sibling to go see santa they just had to remind us not to walk up to santa and say something like "Hi Grandpa" and ruin it for the other kids.

Michael said...

no...we defs dont do xmas like you....kinda wish we had some traditions like that tho. it sounds nice :D

oh and you're nuts for opening presents the night before...i dont get up unless i know that there's prezzies under the tree and a stocking on my door :)

Terry said...

Merry Christmas!!(even though it is currently the 26th :P)For Christmas basically all my family (my grandparents, uncle, aunts, great-uncles etc...) come over on Christmas eve and we exchange presents and eat dinner. So I don't think it is that weird to open the presents on Christmas eve!
And my sister used to be afraid of the santas at the mall. She was so scared that she refused to sit on his lap and get a present :P

Hope you have an awesome new year!! :)

Julia said...

I go to Denmark every other year. When I'm on England it's all the Christmas day ritual with opening presents under the tree and Santa comes at night.
In Denmark we eat dinner and then welight up the Christmas tree with real candels and join hands and walk round it whilst singing songs, it's nice, thoughost peopel find it a little odd. Then we open tree presents and then whilst we're doing that Santa comes (you usually here a bell) and places a big brown sack on the front porch with everyones presents in it. Then we go out and get those. xD never too old to grow out traditions!

TicTacKitCat said...

We open main presents in the morning, then go out for a walk to fly our hawk, on the way back we stop at my grandparents for half an hour or so and then come home to eat a starter. Then more presents, then we eat a main at about four o'clock, go for a walk, more presents, dr. who then pudding and final presents.

It last longer that way - and yes dr. is timetabled into our christmas.
Happy holidays Kristina

Lily said...

XD That Christmas tradition is kind of glorious. Although yeah, I can totally understand why you'd be afraid.

My family opens all of our presents on Christmas Eve, and I've always been told it's a Dutch tradition, or something. We'd leave out cookies and stuff when we were younguns, and then in the morning we'd open our presents from Santa.

I remember we'd go to this HUGE Christmas party held by some family friends for years when I was younger, and there was someone dressed up as Santa to give us all a present, but I always thought "Oh that's not the REAL Santa." However, this is also because Santa was very obviously my grandpa.

Catja said...

It's tradition in Denmark (where I live) to open the presents on Christmas Eve but only once has Santa come by and I don't even remember. It was at my uncle's house. My mom has told me though that I was the only kid who where not afraid of him. Maybe because I love presents so much.

Natalie said...

In our house, Santa always 'forgets' one of the presents and we open it at Christmas dinner and then my dad pretends to have found a twenty pound note in his christmas pudding. Every single year.
Sounds like a good tradition and you should DEFINATELY scare future offspring with it. It's not Christmas without some scary family thing :)

Ava said...

Always Christmas morning present opening. Albeit, 5am Christmas morning when my sister and I had our own way hehehe.

And no scary Santa. I was frightened enough of the idea of him coming into my house while i slept - i probably would have died coming face to face with him!!!

Andrew said...

Merry Christmas Kristina.

I dont know about the singing for Santa thing but the whole opening presents on Christmas Eve thing is a German tradition and apparantly the queen of england opens her presents on Christmas Eve too because shes a German descendant.


Krazy_4_Kelly said...

Uhhh I'm Jewish so not too much help from me here but I will say your Christmas traditions reminded me of Friends where Ross dressed up for Ben as the Holiday Armadillo and Chandler as Santa then Joey came in as Superman and Ross told them all about Hanukkah. I really have no idea why I started thinking of this, though I don't usually need a reason to think about Friends...

Anyways, I think that tradition is cute. I would be terrified too though. I remember my sister met Santa with a friend who celebrated Christmas when she was 5 and she told Santa she wouldn't get anything from him since she was Jewish and he told her to get off his lap. Apparently he's only jolly if he's able to steal cookies from you every December xD

I hope you have fun in California with Luke. And I vote take him on Space Mountain first, then Peter Pan so he gets the awesome Disneyland-isn't-so-kiddish experience and then the awesome Disneyland-makes-you-relive-your-childhood experience =)

Katzie said...

As it happens, you are not alone. At all. I live in Sweden (small, cold place, lots of rain) and here - EVERYONE celebrate Christmas like that. But we watch the traditional Swedish Donald Duck Christmas cartoon on TV first, then suddenly someone has to "go and buy a newspaper" (at like 4 p.m.?) and then "knock knock" in comes Santa, wondering if the children in the house have been good. Usually we have, and we get our presents, and Santa leaves, and then dad/gramps/uncle comes back and says "Hey, I met Santa on my way back!" and for some reason he doesn't have that newspaper he went out to get...
Anyway, that's enough from me - good bye and since Christmas is over I'm just gonna wish you a Happy New Year!
Right. I bought Pretty in Pink (and Green) yesterday, and I must say I love it. Is there another ALL CAPS album coming soon, maybe?

aimée-louise said...

we don't open presents early or christmas, but for birthdays, we always open the presents the day before.
i have no idea why we do is, aha. maybe one year that's the only time family could make it round and it's just sort of stuck?

hope you have a lovely birthday

bluebirch114 said...

I don't celebrate Christmas, but if I did I'd probably be scared of Santa too, I mean, he's the ultimate stalker.

Alyce said...

My family opens our presents on Christmas eve, as well, and then Christmas morning we have stockings from "Santa". One year my brother got a life size cardboard cutout of Ken Griffey Jr. and it scared the shit out of me.
Merry Christmas!!! Have fun in LA!

Marie said...

Things have changed a bit this year, but generally we open one small present on Christmas Eve, that someone else picks out for us. So I'd get to open a present, but my parents would pick the one to open. And as a little side note, we just started the tradition of watching Harry Potter movies on Christmas =D

KaraDawlish said...

Never heard of that before lol

partyweetow said...

We used to open presents on Christmas morning, like you're "supposed" to, but then a few years ago, we were playing a game on Christmas Eve. When it got to midnight, we were all like, "Whatever, let's just open presents now," so that's what we do now. So I guess it IS, technically, Christmas day, but I stand with, since we haven't gone to sleep yet, it's still Christmas Eve.

OH and also, when we were younger, we were extremely poor, so would get presents from the community, and it'd be a guy dressed up as Santa who would come to our house and drop them off. He'd tell us really corny jokes ("Two cannibals were eating a clown. The first one said to the other, 'Does this taste funny to you?'") and then leave.

Ariel said...

When I was little I was absolutely TERRIFIED of anything dressed up in a strange suit, unless it was on Halloween. Santas, the cartoon characters at the mall or theme park.
So we didn't have them at my gatherings. We just had me putting on a hat and perhaps a stocking on my foot passing stuff out.

Liivi said...

Snowy Christmas!

We celebrate the Christmaslike your family. We also open the presents on Christmas Eve, this is our Estonian/German tradition. When there are the small kids in the family, the Santa comes, if there's not the presents will be under the christmas tree.
I was also scared about Santa, I actually don't remember why, but I was. Maybe it was because he is big, and has a snow-white bread and knew how good kid I have been.

Happy Holidays! :D

Ravenclaw2313 said...

My family opens presents Christmas Eve. We have never had a Santa visit but when my brother and I were younger Santa would magically leave presents outside while we were eating dinner. Then on Christmas morning we get up and open the stockings that were filled during the night.

Em said...

That's a German tradition...Are you German?
Since we have family in Germany that we visited for Christmas a couple times, we sometimes open them all on xmas eve. But most often we open one or two presents and save the rest for the morning.

have fun in LA!

Samantha said...

We've always opened presents on Christmas morning. We'd wake up and open up our stockings and then go downtown (very small town) where Santa would be and he would give out goodie bags to all the kids who showed up. Then we'd go home and open up presents while the food was cooking.
When I was little we would sometimes go get photos with Santa a couple weeks before Christmas, which I always hated and told my parents that Santa was "a dirty old man."

Emma said...

My family opens presents on Christmas Eve as well, since we all grew tired of waking up/being woken up early on Christmas Day. xD However, I was lucky not to have been though the traumatizing Santa shenanigans that you have. Poor Kristina! D:

to_thine_own_self said...

No, my family doesn't do Christmas like that...
We just, like a lot of people, get to open one small gift on Christmas Eve, then wake up early on Christmas day and open the rest.
And I only ever saw Santa in malls of stores or somewhere. Never my house, which probably would have scared me too.
Though my mom DID hang a boot out of our fireplace one year and got me up super early to "show me Santa had gotten stuck there." I was so excited that time. Haha.
Oh, Christmas.


Elisabeth said...

We do Christmas on Christmas Eve too. I'd also like to point out that it's not just the Germans, but the Austrians too. That's why I grew up with presents on Christmas Eve - because my mum is Austrian. Also, I don't know about Germany, but in Austria it's not Santa who brings the presents, either. We have the Christkind - the Christ Child - bring the tree, together with the presents. So on the 24th Dad would take us kids to the beach (I live in Australia) or the movies and we'd come home in the afternoon and not be allowed to go into the family room in order to 'not disturb the Christkind' until after dinner.

But I'm glad that so many other people celebrate on Christmas Eve, too. I always thought it was better that way :)

Bertie said...

We usually open family presents on Christmas Eve like the presents from our grandparents or aunts and uncles and people like that. Then we get the "santa" presents on Christmas morning. When we moved into the house where we live now I was about six and we dont have a chimney so i asked my dad how Santa was gonna get in and he said that Santa was going to come in through the porch door...thats when Santa started to kinda creep me out.

Callidora said...

That sounds like a pretty cool tradition. I just might need to remember that for my kids. Except I will not make them sing for their presents. Have a great time in LA.

Darc the Flipendo Girl said...

Aw, you poor girl - being FORCED to sing in exchange for presents! I love the tradition your family has!
I love the shoes you have on the picture - you look positivly petrified of 'Santa'. [Big hugs]

Happy Christmas!

beangirl1389 said...

My birthday is on the 22nd so I guess my family didn't feel to sorry about making me wait until Christmas morning. I go down to my grandma's house on Christmas Eve and most of my Mom's cousins visit.On Christmas morning, we open 'Santa' presents early. Around 1 we go back down to my grandma's house and we exchange gifts with all of my mom's brothers and sisters and kids. This year there were about 50 there. But, my Dad's side of the family lives 8 hours away, so normally either on New Years Weekend or Martin Luther King Weekend we go to Illinois and do Christmas up there too. =)

Steve said...

Haha I can't remember being scared of Santa. But there was one Santa event I can remember when my parents brought us to a friend's house and his Dad played Santa (although it didn't occur to us that that was the case until well after the fact) and I got an action figure of two-face from Batman (I think this was around the time a Batman movie came out.) Anyway, it was really strange to me to get two-face because we had a family rule that we weren't allowed to get villain action figures. I knew, at that point, that Santa had no idea what he was doing.

Sarah said...

well we do open some of our presents on Christmas Eve. And someone does dress up as Santa :p

Every year on Christmas Eve we go with my dad's side of the family to the boat club my aunt owns. They have my uncle dress up as Santa and give out presents to us. So we open those Christmas Eve but our main presents and presents from my mom's side of the family get opened Christmas day.

Madeline said...

Wow, Kristina, I'm so sorry you were traumatized by Santa! I've never heard of a Christmas tradition quite like that.

In my family Christmas Eve is entirely taken up by church, because we have two services and we have to be at both because my mom works for the church, but that's okay because I love doing that! We open all of our presents on Christmas Day.

Aly said...

I also spent holiday break watching Firefly with my dad! haha

Patty said...

first the strange santa is really creepy, poor little kristina. ?My family opens presents on Christmas eve, but it was really cool. Every Christmas the presents were never on the tree but magically at midnight they appear. To this day i dont know how my parents did it i started watching them but i never found out. Well one year a couple of days before christmas my sister take to my brother room (they are 8 and 7 years older than me) open his closet and show me my "santa's presents" i was in such a shock that i dont remember nothing after that, except my brother taking out the room and yelling at my sister for being mean. :( . Well merry christmas everyone

hmweasley said...

We opened most of our presents on Christmas Day just like in the movies. We just got presents from family on Christmas Eve (my extended family does secret santa each year). I find it interesting that most of your presents were from parents and only one main one from Santa. In my family, Santa brought all of the toys, and we got one present from our parents (it was always clothes). My parents even put those labels on the presents that say to and from. I can't believe it took me so long to realize they were in my mom's handwriting.

Ava said...

HAPPY BIRTHDAY KRISTINA!!! I hope you have a great day and an even better year to come! xx

Amanda said...

mWe always open our presents on christmas eve too :).

When we were younger "Santa" would bring us our presents while we were sleeping and we would go down and see our main present sitting under the tree un-wrapped. But now that we are older and we realize that Santa wasn't real my parents just wrap all of the gifts and we open all of them on Christmas Eve.

RLeviathanH said...

My family doesn't do it exactly the same way. Every year we have a Christmas Eve gift that we open before we go to bed. It's alwasy new pajamas. Then we go to sleep and open the rest of the presents Christmas morning. I like it.

Also, I think you should do the santa thing for your kids. But I think they should have to do interpretive dance as well. :DDDD Maybe not, though.

nova said...

I always figured that everyone opened gifts Christmas Eve until I was 11. So I don't think it's weird at all. Except the Santa thing... that's sorta weird.
Glad you had a great Christmas!!

goldenwindow said...

Dude, I was TERRIFIED of Santa when I was little. I was always really scared that I would wake up while he was putting presents under the tree. I don't even know why. He just scared me.

We actually used to open our presents New Year's Day, 'cause I grew up in Ukraine, and the Soviet Union was officially atheist, so people didn't get Christmas, so things shifted a little bit.

But we had a big party every year, and around 10 Santa would come by and say hi, and then go on his merry way. But even when I believed in Santa, I still knew that he wasn't the real one. I don't know how that happened, lol.

And I think that you have an awesome Christmas tradition! My brother gets kind of the same thing (he's 7) now; we have a big party on New Year's, and Santa comes, and if you sing a song or recite a poem, you get a present. They even make the older kids (like me-17!) do it, too.

Hilary said...

My friend does that. I think it's crazy, but hey, it's your family. They open their presents on Christmas Ever because they have family stuff they have to do and no time to open presents (sad).

So no, you are not alone.

Audrey said...

My family always opens presents Christmas eve. My great grandma started that by telling the family that no one could open presents until the dishes were done, and it has stayed that way ever since, everyone helps with the dish washing in anticipation for presents. Its always kinda random when you get the "good" present, I think its more exciting that way.

JuliAnn said...


omgitslouise said...

Merry Christmas Kristina!
I live in Scotland, and in my family, my grandparents normally come up on Christmas Eve to stay over. We don't open any presents until Christmas Day, but all of the presents we've gotten from our family are already under the tree. Santa comes in the middle of the night, we get up at 7 and open all of our Santa presents and the ones from our close family who are there, then we go to 9 o'clock mass, have croissants and brioche rolls for breakfast, and the rest of our presents get opened throughout the day. It's a bit average I think, but it's how I like it. :] <3

nicolexoxo said...

umm, YES! Santa would come on Christmas eve (bells would ring first, to signal that yes...santa has arrived) and my parents/family would force my sister and I to sit on his lap....but we were shy, not so much scared. And he would ask us if we were good and what we wanted and then we would get pajamas and a toy we wanted. We still get pajamas...even my 30 year old cousin! haha but santa doesn't come anymore. One year, Santa was strangely thinner than the previous year's santa and we got suspicious. Our parents told us that Santa was sick. hahah

Lotta Weber said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Lotta Weber said...

We open our presents on Christmas Eve as well, that's common in Germany (in Europe as fare as I know) xD

My Brother dressed up as Santa once I recognized him because of his watch xD....I remember feeling sorry because he went through all the trouble of dressing up and I still recognized him.

Marijke said...

Just as a reaction to what Melody said somewhere above me:

Santa has nothing to do with Germany, but they think it origins from a Dutch holiday (Sinterklaas).
Christmas trees are believed to come from the 'heathens'(Germanic people*), AKA non Christians, to celebrate the Winter Solstice. When the Christians tried to convert the non-believers they thought the transgression to another religion would be less painful if they'd still have recognisable holidays/traditions. And so Christmas was born.
The way the USA celebrates christmas is a combination of traditions that the Europeans (and with Santa, especially the Dutch) brought to the new world, and the Christian celebration of the birth of Christ.

*Germanic people aren't people from Germany, but:

Ahh well :) OT: Fake Santa's are scary. And Kristina, even though you don't know me ;) have an awesome holiday!

C.Mch said...

My family and I open our presents to each other on Christmas Eve after we have had a big fancy dinner. Then on Christmas day we open our stocking stuffers. I think it's better to do it this way because you get two days of celebrating instead of just one.

*Luca* said...

We DO open our presents on Christmas Eve, the same presents that have been all along under our christmas tree, and my parents still say they are from Santa...even when we go along when they buy the presents, but I love that part.

About the Santa stuff, we used to have a tradition with my dad's extended family, where we used to go to my grandparents house and someone in the family dressed as Santa and THEN all of us, ALL MY FAMILY, the 40 we used to be, because now we are like 70, used to walk around the street giving candy to every random kid that came across us, the neighbors, and many others. After that we'd go back to the house and the person dressed as Santa would give all of us our presents. It's a long tradition, but I loved it. We don't do it anymore because most of us kids back then are now in their 20's, and with their own kids, so that's sad (the part where we don't do that tradition anymore, not the part where my cousins have kids).

Anyway, happy holydays!!! :D

kate said...

ohhh kristina,
you are not alone in your fear of santa. when i was younger, my mom had this battery operated santa head that was...motion activated, i guess? so my mom would put the decapitated santa's head on a table at the bottom of our staircase and everytime someone would walk by zombie santa would open his eyes and blink and move his mouth and sing christmas songs or say merry christmas or any number of terrifyingly threatening sentences. who does that to a five year old?!

quidditchs said...

we have always opened the presents on Christmas eve, right after dinner :p

Kristina I hope you have an amazing time on LA!

Sarah said...

Well, I wake up on Christmas Eve and look in my stocking where Santa has left one present and I open it! Then at 1 pm or something we eat Christmas dinner, with the meatballs and prinskorvar (okay, I really don't know what the English word for that is and I can't be bothered to use Google Translate to look it up. Sorry xD) and the christmas ham and so on.
When it's nearing 3 pm we sit down and watch Donald Duck and his friends on the TV. I realize this must sound like a stupid thing to do, but it's a tradition in Sweden and pretty much everyone does it. It's fun! You watch it every year and it's equally funny every time xD
When it gets dark at around 4:30 pm someone dressed as Santa, usually my dad, comes to the house and gives us our presents.
And that's pretty much it!

And to answer you question: No, you're not the only family in the world who does that. In Sweden, Denmark, Norway, Finland and Poland (I'm not really sure about Poland, I haven't really spoken to someone from there...) the presents are opened on Christmas Eve :D

Georgia said...

My cousins live in Norway and they open their presents on Christmas Eve. They also have two Christmas dinners, one on Christmas Eve and one on Christmas Day. They also have a Christmas breakfast!

elle said...

nice...! we do open our family presents on xmas eve, and the alleged "santa" comes overnight (we never see him) and delivers chocolate to our large stockings. :) your tradition mustve been fun when you were little though!

Laura said...

I've been debating recently if it's worth catching up on this last season of Heroes. I'm a bit behind and it just keeps frustrated me... but I've kept all the episodes on the DVR, so who knows, maybe I'll do a marathon soon.

Anyway, sounds like a lovely Christmas tradition! My family has always done the usual Christmas morning thing, but doing it the night before makes some sense - at least when I was little, I would always get my parents outta bed as early as possible because i was so excited. At least your way, your parents got to sleep!

Some kids I was babysitting the other day said that they open all the presents from each other on Christmas Eve, and then do it all again with Santa's presents on Christmas morning - now that's the best of both worlds!

Anyway, have a lovely time in L.A.! The new Christmas song is great. Happy New Year!

Kyndel said...

We open our gifts on Christmas eve as well. Though that is often because Christmas day is the day we go visit the other families and what not. No weird Santa though. We pick a person to wear the santa hat and they get to hand out all of the gifts.

Baxter said...

Until I was 16 years old, my family would open one present on Christmas Eve and it was always new pajamas, which my mother insisted we wear that night. My mother likes to take photos of the present openings in the morning and this was her way of making sure we were presentable.

KariKristineJ said...

Pretty much the whole of Europe celebrate it like your family:) Only countries I can think of that does it like other americans is the ones in Great Britan!

penryn said...

Okay, I've only read like ten of the comments, so maybe someone's already said this, and obviously I'm super late, but!!!

Hiring fake Santas is a huge tradition in other parts of the world. By which I mean Europe. What they'll do is have a neighborhood dad slip out, do a few houses (not his own), and then another dad will do a few more houses, and so on until all the houses have had a not-complete-stranger terrifying their children! Whoo!

Alice said...

Anyways, I think that tradition is cute. I would be terrified too though. I remember my sister met Santa with a friend who celebrated Christmas when she was 5 and she told Santa she wouldn't get anything from him since she was Jewish and he told her to get off his lap. Apparently he's only jolly if he's able to steal cookies from you every December xD
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