Twaddle & Twak

Rants, Raves and Everything Else!

Dual Culture Christmas December 3, 2008

Filed under: Uncategorized — natalian @ 6:57 am

As a little person I lived and loved Christmas time.  The expectant joy of writing my list to Father Christmas.  The delight of buying our tree and decorating it with tinsel and lights.  Leaving a glass of milk and cookies for the man in red and snuggling down in my bed believing I heard bells and hooves up ahead.  I would wake up before the crack of dawn and drag my sleepy brother from his bed, tapping my foot impatiently outside the bathroom door as he insisted he “hadda go” before we could approach the tree and open gifts galore!

Unfortunately that childlike magic wanes as we get older but I always knew I could recapture it when I had my own children. What I didn’t realise is how difficult it is to keep “the secret” alive!  I have presents stashed in far to reach places and trying to come up with explanations why my Eldest’s toy inventions can not be made by Santa’s Elves, has taxed the brain!

My next Christmas hurdle has been to try and balance my children’s Anglo/German heritage.  My husband’s family traditionally celebrates “Heilige Abend” (Holy Night) which is the eve of the 24th of December.  All the celebrations happen on this evening with the arrival of the “Kristkind” who magically leaves the gifts under the tree.  It is special but I still clung to my Christmas memories of Santa in his sleigh, arriving on my roof and waking up to my presents on Christmas morning.

So I devised a way that we could celebrate Christmas with our dual cultures.  The German”Kristkind” would arrive on the eve of the 24th of December bringing us the gifts from our families.  Father Christmas would arrive while we were sleeping bringing the gifts the children requested.  This way I could still experience the joy of a Christmas morning!

Driving home from school yesterday Eldest was once again reviewing his “Christmas List”. (Note to self: Insist on a cut off date for “The List” next year!)

“Mommy, I think … I would hope for a quad bike for Christmas!”

“Darling, Father Christmas can only bring one BIG present and you already asked for a scooter.” (…. and it would be a “White Durban Christmas” before he would ever be allowed to ride said quad bike!)

(A moments silence.)

“I know!  I have a good idea!  Father Christmas can bring me a scooter and Kristkind can bring me a quad bike!”

The wisdom of a 4 year old!

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4 Responses to “Dual Culture Christmas”

  1. My husband was offended when I called Nikolaus a wannabe Santa. 😉

  2. Pete Says:

    Very bright 4-year old! Can see how you would be horrified at the thought of a quad-bike though. I think he should wait at least another 10 years maybe? Enjoy the dual celebrations.

  3. natalian Says:

    Honeypiehorse: I must say the concept of St Nikolaus was a bit confusing for me at first, but I think it is a way to keep the kids on their best behaviour till Christmas Eve.

    Pete: I have heard of so many horrific accidents on quads. I think people mistake them for oversized toys! As for the dual celebrations, they can be pretty exhausting but I wouldn’t have it any other way.

  4. I understand your dilemma! We ignore the fact that the Christkind is visiting every household in Germany except ours and the fact that Father Christmas makes a special stop here en route to England. We just do our thing. None of our kids seem particularly bothered, and I am happy because like you I couldn’t lose that Father Christmas magic.

    We have however embraced the December 6th arrival of the Weihnachtsman – he may look like Father Christmas, but we tell the kids he is very, very different.


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