crazy christmas traditions from around the world!

AUSTRIA

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krampus is real- austrian children live in fear of the ‘christmas devil’ who’s said to beat naughty children with large branches… terrifying!

CANADA

it appears that the north pole may be in canada!  any letter written to:

santa claus

north pole,

HOHOHO

canada

is read and replied to!

santaletters

CATALONIA

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the catalonian traditional nativity scenes go something like this: manger, mary & joseph, shepherd, wise men… defecating man. there have been many attempts at explaining the ‘caganer’s’ purpose, the most convincing explanation is that he is “fertilising the earth.”

ETHIOPIA

christmas isn’t celebrated until the 7th of january, and on christmas day, it is tradition to dress in all white.

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GERMANY

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germans hide a christmas pickle in their tree.  the first child to find it christmas morning receives a special gift!

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also, on december 5th, kids leave a shoe outside the house overnight.  nice kids awake to a shoe full of candy while naughty kids awake to a shoe full of sticks.

GREAT BRITAIN

each member of the family must make a wish as they stir the christmas pudding mix in a clockwise motion before it’s cooked!

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ICELAND

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you better hope to receive new clothes before christmas eve or else a mythical creature called the jólakötturinn, translated as ‘yule cat,’ will devour you!

ITALY

instead of waiting for santa claus on the 25th of december, italian children wait for befana, a friendly witch who delivers toys and sweets, on the 5th of january.  instead of cookies and milk, she prefers wine.

La-Befana

JAPAN

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many families eat a special dinner out on christmas eve… at kentucky fried chicken (kfc)!

LATVIA

around christmas time a group of ‘mummers‘ dressed in different costumes travel from house to house asking for treats in exchange for a blessing.

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NORWAY

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there is no sweeping on christmas eve since all the brooms must be hidden away so that mischievous witches do not steal them and fly off in the night.

PORTUGAL

christmas morning is a time to remember and celebrate the lives of loved ones who are deceased.  they set empty places at the table for each of their departed family members.

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SOUTH AFRICA

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a fun christmas story is told to the children each year about a little boy named danny.  danny angered his grandmother when he ate the christmas cookies that she left out for santa… so she murdered him and he still haunts people’s houses on christmas eve.

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and deep fried caterpillars are on the menu for christmas dinner!

UKRAINE

instead of decorating the christmas tree with tinsel and ornaments, they decorate the tree with faux spider webs and spiders.

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VENEZUELA

roller skating

the city streets are closed on christmas morning as many christians arrive to mass on… roller skates!

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA

here are a few traditions that may seem strange to other countries:

apparently people in other countries don’t usually decorate the outsides of their houses with lights and statues of santa claus, snowmen and reindeers

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many countries have never even heard of egg nog or fruit cakes

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santa runs… where a bunch of people dress up like santa… and then run… yep, i can see how that sounds a bit strange!

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elf on the shelf is quickly becoming a family tradition in america

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