This weekend, Sinterklaas, who has been in the country for about a month, delivered presents all over The Netherlands, on the much-awaited pajkesavond:
"Saint Nicholas' Eve, 5 December, is chief occasion for gift-giving during the winter holiday season. The evening is called Sinterklaasavond or Pakjesavond ("gifts evening", or literally "packages evening"). On the evening of 5 December, the presents will somehow mysteriously arrive at homes, or a note will be "found" that explains where in house the presents were hidden by Piet who left a sack with them. Sometimes a neighbor will knock on the door (pretending to be the Piet) and leave the sack outside for the children to retrieve. When the presents arrive, the living room is decked out with them, much as on Christmas Day in other countries. On 6 December, Sinterklaas departs without any ado, and all festivities are over." *
Christmas traditions are magic, and we want our girl to get to know the different cultures she is part of. So we gathered a few of our friends and organized a potluck lunch, presents for the kids, as well as a funny game for us adults. (Did I just write that? It is weird for me to think of myself as the old ones!). There were mandarins, pepernoten, pollo en achiote, rajas con crema,, a pear and blue-cheese quiche...
It was so special to see the excitement in the little ones. Eventhough at this point they do not understand much, I am pretty certain this will create memories and later, looking through old albums, they will come to cherish the moment.
What traditions from your childhood are you keeping and which ones have you adopted from the places where you've been to?
*From the wikipedia.
** Infographic via Veggie Style with Daphne, and a Pepernooten recipe!