Can you feel it? can you smell the difference in the air?
As I get older there are times I don't feel the Christmas feeling you know?
I'm only reminded sometimes by the ads and news on television
In the Philippines some news program ends with the 100 days countdown
anyway, ever since living in North America
I can feel the coldness in the air,smell the pine and see some trees changing leaves/color.
the real deal Christmas trees on sale all over (not the plastic ones although some stores still sell them but the legit Christmas trees from a farm for real!)
I still have to convince my parents to buy a real tree or get a potted one.
but maybe some day especially when there are kids all over the house that would be fun
although the upkeep they say is quite a maintenance.
In the Philippines people start decorating their house pretty early like October
some in the first week of November after all saints and souls day with different colors of christmas lights,Parol and plastic christmas trees with all sorts of ornaments.
Children singing carols at night and then you give them some money in exchange for their musical talents.And usually around December 16 there would be a mass at 4 am or evening time the 1st day you make a wish til Christmas (for 9 days straight you should go to church) and some say it would come true. I'm always one day short back then due to school but I still say my wish and prayers. Sometimes you'll see lots of people asking for alms most of them came from the countryside really far away and would make a journey towards Manila or any city to ask for spare change this is after all the season of giving most often than not people would give them money or food they usually standby outside the church some say people are more giving especially after mass haha! There would also be a lot of christmas parties at school,work,reunion etc.
|bibingka top with fresh coconut|
There would be a lot of vendors selling all sorts of rice cakes or anything warm since it's quite cold at dawn and at night. I miss eating Puto bumbong the most!
|puto bumbong with fresh coconut and brown sugar (although sometimes people put a different special type of sugar I dunno what it is nor how to describe it it just taste different from the regular one)|
In the States usually after Thanksgiving people start decorating (still depends what culture you're following) but mostly after thanksgiving. There would be tons of places going on sale, clearance, malls and outlet stores filled with people. All seems bright and cheery! October is the time of the month people would actually start buying early christmas presents and some stores offer a lay away program(installment payment) and gift receipts available so in case that person doesn't like your gift they could exchange them for cash or whatever.Mass on the 24th and 25th offered in different times so as to avoid traffic and all that. Minimal Christmas Party at work usually 1-2 hours or so then back to the regular schedule (depends where you work and where you are) unlike in the Philippines when it's a party it's almost like the whole day haha. As for the food we usually eat filipino food but in small servings/courses unlike in the Philippines wherein the entire clan is present haha so here mostly salad, spaghetti,meat and dessert (fruit salad/cake) that's it! and gift giving of course!
How about you? what are your christmas plans and how do you celebrate Christmas? I hope you have a very Merry Christmas! enjoy the holidays!