Christmas Day, December 25
Christmas is a joyful religious holiday when Christians celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ. The Christmas story comes from the Bible.
Another important custom of Christmas is to send and receive Christmas cards, which are meant to help express the happiness of the season. Americans begin sending Christmas cards early in December to friends, family, and co-workers.
It seems that nearly every family has its own unique Christmas observances. Many people are especially proud of Christmas traditions brought to the United States from their countries of origin. The wonderful foods, music and songs, prayers and stories, all make Christmas special in the United States.
Home for the Holidays
Going home for Christmas is an important tradition. No matter where you may be the rest of the year, being at home with your family and friends for Christmas is very important. The Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays are the busiest times of the year at airports, train stations, and bus depots
This means that the house will be full of cousins, aunts and uncles that might not see each other during the year. Everyone joins in to help in the preparation of the festivities
On Christmas Eve, there are evening church services for everyone. On Christmas Day, there are other religious ceremonies at churches which families attend before they make their rounds to visit friends and relatives.
The Christmas table looks much like a Thanksgiving feast of turkey or ham, potatoes and pie. No Christmas is complete without lots of desserts. Hard candies such as peppermint candy canes are also traditional gifts.
At Christmas Eve gatherings, adults drink eggnog, a drink made of cream, milk, sugar, beaten eggs and brandy or rum. Plenty of eggnog or hot cocoa is ready for people who go from house to house to sing Christmas carols to their neighbors.
Long ago, each child hung a stocking, or sock, over the fireplace. Santa entered down the chimney and left candy and presents inside the socks for the children. Today the tradition is carried on. Learn more about Santa Claus in the U.S. here.
Check out a Christmas recipe from an embassy staff member below:
Reindeer Food for Christmas!
Check Mix Cereal 1-2 boxes depending on number of servings
M&Ms (plain, peanut)
Peanuts and pretzel sticks [broken up]
Mix cereal, M&Ms, peanuts and pretzel sticks in large bowl.
Melt white chocolate in pan.
Pour melted white chocolate over mix and toss till coated.
Scoop out mixture onto waxed paper. Let harden. Put in refrigerator.