My X-mas started with eye laser surgery! The best invention and gift ever. Everything went smooth and good. I was a bit excited before but the procedure was quick and easy. And it didn’t hurt at all. The worst was that in the beginning I was panicking a bit because I was moving my eyes and thought I was making myself blind because of that. But the doctor was just perfect type of guy to handle me – calming and strong. Triple times older though hahaa!
Yesterday passed by while I was just sleeping but today it was so nice to wake up. I can’t really get it now that my vision has been so bad for 15 years. The surgery is super handy! My Christmas is a bit disgusting with dirty face and no showers/saunas/make-up. But definitely worth it. I also have a week without exercise ahead (because no sweating is allowed) – so it means Christmas sweets only! Woop woop…
My Finnish Christmas traditions
I’m gonna tell you, mostly to my international friends, about my Finnish Christmas. I have always spent it at home, in my small hometown in middle-eastern Finland. One Christmas only I spent in Australia – at my Australian relatives. It was a different kind of experience and very warm and nice too!
At home we always wake up in the morning without alarm, then put some Christmas carols in the music player and watch the traditional children’s TV-series with my nephews. We also visit my grandparents. At noon there is the traditional broadcast from Turku Finland – Declaration of Christmas Peace. (Quite in the many places in world Christmas might be mostly commercial – in Finland there is also a strong peace aspect in it; the point is mostly to calm down for a couple of days to spend harmonious time together with your family). At that time we start eating our Christmas rice porridge. There is one almond in the porridge and some one gets it and can make a wish. I wasn’t the lucky this time. I think I was last year but can’t even remember my wish. On our Christmas lunch table there is also some baked ham with some good mustard and Karelian pastry with hard-boiled egg and butter mixture.
In the afternoon we go to the cemetery to bring the candles to the relatives’ graves that have passed away already. This was the second Christmas that my dear grandma/Mummo is away and I could only visit her there. The drive to the cemetery was beautiful as well as the cemetery and the church. The white Christmas is the thing – it makes Joulu (Christmas) to feel like Joulu! How can you people manage without? I’m sorry for your loss hahah! Actually last Christmas was snowless here and it was pretty depressing – can you imagine Finland in December having the daylight only for 5 hours or so. And when there’s no snow, it’s so much worse. But this time we were lucky, we got the snow and -25 degrees! How would you like that? I definitely prefer a lot of minus degrees than for example the humid chilly winters in Malta – especially inside the apartment. Oh boy, here it’s so nice inside. We have warm houses and the fireplace and sauna basically in every household. For me it’s hard to get why people elsewhere in similar countries with different seasons and cold winters don’t have saunas.. It’s the best invention ever – sorry I forgot this before the eye laser thing!
After talking with dead people we drive back home, put the candles both outside and inside to get some good atmosphere and Finnish fengshui and start to set up the table for the actual Christmas dinner. There is many sorts of traditional Finnish food that my mom has prepared beforehand, already on the earlier weeks or the night before or at least in the morning. My sister is helping her too. I’m the miserable one who hasn’t learned much yet but has to start the mum’s school soon to keep the traditions up. I’m not too much into cooking, eating is mostly my thing. But yeah yeah sometimes we have to go beyond the comfort zone. I’m sure I will cook to my family some day too. That’s loooove.. Anyway I can’t make them starve.
On the Christmas table we have different kinds of delicious things like rutabaga and carrot and sweet potato casseroles, rossolli salad, herring and freshly salted salmon, baked ham that has been in the oven the whole last night, our family has Karelian style hot pot too and there are some more many other delicious traditional things. When it comes to sweets: Christmas pastries are great with coffee or Christmas glögg (similar to mulled wine). Well gingerbreads are everywhere and some really love them.
Sometimes we have the Christmas sauna before the dinner, sometimes after. Depends; what time the Santa/Joulupukki comes. You know of course that Santa is from Korvatunturi, Lapland / Finland. Well this fellow came also to our place this evening, and kids were excited of course. Sometimes it’s hard for us adults to talk about all the essential about the presents; like ”How did you know that I needed this” etc. when there is one already 7 years old and not the dumbest. But we managed. Children were happy. Adults got some nice surprises too. And the evening passed by nicely when opening the gifts and drinking some red wine and glögg.
After the long day It’s time to rest. My eyes thank. They are a bit sour after all the sparkle! Merry Christmas All!