Unusual Christmas Traditions
Unusual Christmas Traditions
With Christmas nearly upon us, theres so much to do! We need to decorate the tree, leave the Christmas cake to soak and start to think about filling those Christmas stockings. Thats all before we even considered the delicious feast we prepare on Christmas Day! In the mad rush of the festive season, it can be easy to forget why we follow these traditions and what the Christmas holiday represents. To the British its a time for Christmas gifts, carol singing and the Queens speech but have you ever wondered what Christmas means to other countries? Find Me A Gift have searched high and low to uncover what they think is the most unusual Christmas tradition in the world! After researching as many Christmas traditions as possible, we narrowed our Most Unusual Christmas Tradition Award down to just two entrants.
According to popular folklore (and idle rumours of course), Germany has practised a pickle tradition for years at Christmas time. When German families decorate their Christmas trees, legend has it that the last ornament or bauble to be hung from the tree is a blown-glass ornament in the shape of a pickle! The adults hide the pickle ornament in the depths of the Christmas tree and the first child to find it on Christmas day morning receives a special treat or an extra present. Although there are hundreds of cites of this story, none of them confirm that this tradition actually takes place! So although it may not strictly be true, it is still one of the strangest Christmas traditions (or non-traditions) we have ever heard of!
With no further ado, its time to crown Spain, Italy and Portugal with the Most Unusual Christmas Tradition award! Now we all know The Nativity Story inside and out, but who knows the additional character in the Spanish, Italian and Portuguese versions of the story? Cue the Caganer. Accompanying Mary, Joseph, Baby Jesus and the Shepherds, the Caganer is a small statue of a man, which is often tucked away in the corner of model nativity scenes. So if this extra character is such a unique part of these countries nativity scenes, why is he hid in the corner? Originating from Catalonia, the Caganer figure depicts a man in the act of (how can I say this politely) taking a poop.
Strangely enough, there is no record of the exact origin of this tradition but references date back to the 17th century! It is also unclear why placing a pooping man in a classic nativity scene has any relevance to Christmas but it has been suggested that the Caganer represents the idea that God can present himself and call upon us whenever he feels necessary and that he shows we are all equal despite race, gender or age. It has of course developed into a fun game for the children!
Now at Christmas time, we all look for fun activities and games to keep the kids occupied. Although we may think the tradition is a little strange, it seems the legend is a little closer to home to Find Me A Gift than we first thought! Behold the Pooing Santa. This cheeky little chappy is a modern day replica of the Caganer! As Santa squats, tap him on the back and sweeties pop out of his bottom. Dressed in traditional Santa Claus get up, the Pooing Santa comes complete with 15g of sweeties to get you started. Simply fill him up and press down on his back for a little present! Like the best of us, Pooing Santa can sometimes feel a little restricted so give him a little shake to dislodge any stuck sweeties! The perfect stocking filler for any household this Christmas, put your hands together for Find Me A Gifts very own Santa Caganer. Fancy us thinking it was just a pooing plastic Santa; it represents the strangest Christmas tradition known to man...enjoy!
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Jesse Jones joined Find Me A Gift in May 2008 and has been writing fabulous articles for us ever since!