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Family Christmas Tradition



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Family Christmas Tradition

Today is Sept. 1and it is the start of the "BER" months. What Christmas family Christmas tradition would you like your kids to keep and share with their children?

Here in Manila, as soon as it hits September, it is the start of the Christmas season. Malls will start putting up the Christmas decors and you will hear Christmas carols everywhere. In the radio, pipe in music in the elevator of the hotels, your office, etc. Even the streets will be decorated with Christmas lights. That's how early we spend Christmas in our country.

In our family, it is a tradition to give gifts to every member of the household. At the strike of midnight, we start opening our gifts. When we were young (I have 6 siblings and I'm the 7th) we love getting gifts (of course), usually we have a gift from our parents and SANTA, Yes, that is correct, from good ol' Santa :-). We really expect a gift from him because a few days before Christmas, we wrote him a letter to ask what we want for Christmas. My parents will hide the gifts from us and will not let us out of our rooms because Santa might not come if he sees us awake.

This is the family Christmas tradition that we still practice until now. So just imagine, since we are 7 in the family, all of my nieces and nephews will receive 7 gifts from their parents and uncle/auntie. Then another one from Santa :-).

Share with me your family Christmas tradition that you like your kids to continue.

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cmoneyspinner

I just want them to continue to put up the Christmas tree, exchange gifts, enjoy the family meal, and then let the cook get some sleep!! LOL.




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TutuBie13

Yes, putting up the Christmas tree is something that we continue to do as well. We do this every Nov. 30 because it's a holiday. All my nephews and nieces will go to my dad's house. We will put up the tree and they will put the decorations.




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stbrians

Do they sing Christmas carols? What of going to church. Christ is normally the reason for the season and he is not ever included in the celebrations.




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cmoneyspinner

As my husband says: “They are not 'Christmas carols'. They are spiritual songs and hymns of praise that people usually sing around Christmas time.” For me, Jesus is the reason for my entire life, each and every day of the year. For me, the Christmas holiday season is not any different from any other day of the year in that respect. Christ is the reason and is included in my celebration of life. Period! That celebration includes regularly attending worship services. The question was about a "family tradition". My adoration of the Messiah is not a tradition. It's my life, it's my lifestyle, it's how I live and the reason I live. There is nothing that I do where Christ is not included.




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Steve5

Sounds like everyone's busy. Especially, the one preparing the meals. I can only imagine the amount of work for extended families. And they even bring their friends with them on the occasion. So it really is a ton of work cooking meals for all of them.




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blackmist

Christmas tree are common every Christmas. Most household always set up their own tree. Having a meal would be the best because that is when all the members of the family go home to spend time with each other.




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jeffreyjose48

We are now in the month of October. Only a few days left before Christmas comes. Here in our house, we already put up a Christmas tree. It was bought from Manila through online.




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ElectorAlexande

Wow that's quite interesting to start from now and prepare or Xmas that is still far to me but anyway i love it that way. I love Xmas and don't love to spend it alone at home so i rather visit a friend and cause trouble there, lol.




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jeffreyjose48

Our Christmas tree is already assembled. Christmas lights are already on. Its just October yet but the spirit of Christmas is already present in our house.




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Zelmontero

Every Christmas we will all go to church to celebrate the birth of Christ. We also need to complete the nine mass before Christmas. When I was a child I always get bored but as I grew older I now enjoy the sermons of our Pastor. I want this tradition to be passed down to all my descendants. To let them know what is the true meaning of Christmas.




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TutuBie13

It's amazing how you were able to sustain this tradition. I tried doing this for a few years but I can never complete it. Yes, I agree that this is something worth keeping.




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mark8625

Me too. I tried this many times but I failed. Waking up early as 3 am in the morning makes me lazy. I think many gets relate to it. Attending and completing that entire mass of number of days believes many that it would give luck and granted your wishes.




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Steve5

That's interesting. I've read that it shouldn't be the main reason for attending mass that early. Completing the nine days novena is a sign of your love for God. So waking up early is a sacrifice and shows your devotion to honoring and thanking God.

But I believe that if you're humble and patient, your wishes may be granted. Wishes are granted by God not according to our time but according to His will. Trust and all will be well.




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mark8625

That is right. Many people believed that completing nine days attending early morning mass would granted their wishes. I think it is not all about the wishes it is all about spending just 9 days for Him as sacrifices would change people mindset. They should change that believe because its just you attending because you have something in return for Him which is not good.




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Steve5

It could be that wishes are actually granted. But the way other people say it made it look like you only have to complete early mass days.

I've noticed that people who don't expect anything but hope for the best are most likely to get their wishes granted. Those with humble hearts are blessed to have their desires granted by God if He so wills it.




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mark8625

Yeah I agree with you on that. We must not expect anything in return. But people used to it like if you did something good for them you must do good in return also. That is why sometimes people is really unfair. When you give something to them then let it and do not expect anything.




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Steve5

You're right. I suppose it's part of the challenge. We're used to getting something in return for what we do. But God wants us to be selfless in the sincerest way possible.

I hope your wishes come true. Let's stay humble and share God's love for others.




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NerdIndeed

Me three, I cannot complete the nine days of "simbang gabi." They say that if ever you complete it, you can wish for something and our Lord God will grant it to you. Well, yeah sure. I'd rather work hard for it so that I can achieve it, haha!




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superlicca

I can relate to you. I never succeeded in completing the simbang gabi. I am not sure that your wish will come true if you will complete it but I heard it many times. What I also enjoy during simbang gabi is buying the Filipino purple rice cake or puto bumbong on the street. If you live in the Philippines, you will surely know this food.




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NerdIndeed

Yes, of course, puto bungbong is life during simbang gabi. Great to have with tons of margarine and coconut on top.




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superlicca

Tons of margarine on top of it is a great idea. I think puto bumbong is the famous food during Simbang gabi and it will never fade. A lot of vendors sell this food on the street.




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NerdIndeed

There are other rice cakes available during the night mass like kutsinta, nilupak, and suman. What I usually eat right after the ceremony is beef lugaw. Porridge with beef on it that is available on stalls near the church.




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superlicca

Those are delicious food. That is something that I like in the Philippines. These food are always part of the tradition. I am excited for the Simbang Gabi not only for the food but to attend mass. I may not be able to complete it but I would still like to attend. I believe that Simbang gabi is not just a tradition but a spiritual preparation for the Christmas day.




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NerdIndeed

Good to hear that you are still thrilled and excited to attend this kind of things. A study conducted by SWS states that fewer and fewer people are going to church and the reason is its inconsistency with its stand regarding society. A lot of respondents also said that the church should focus on its teaching alone and not meddle with government affairs.




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edencaga

When I was young I don't have the idea about how many days would simbang gabi take before you will completed it. I just knew at that time that there is simbang gabi every December before Christmas. I only knew when I was elementary, maybe it was Grade 5 that it would take up nine (9) days to attend sermon to complete the mass. When I was in highschool, that was the time when I am so excited about attending simbang gabi every night or early in the morning but I never completed it in my whole highschool years. It was then when I got to college maybe I was third year college then when I first completed the simbang gabi in my whole life and I was so happy that I did that thing. Up to now I am willing to complete the simbang gabi this year again. My father wanted also to complete the mass so sometimes he was the one accompanying me everytime there was a simbang gabi. Sometimes my mom but she was too busy to attend to since my brother was too early in their class so she had to cooked and prepare some meals and things for my younger brother.




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NesMarcos

Christmas celebration is indeed different in the Philippines. Considering the Philippines has the longest Christmas celebration in the world. Even in my childhood years, I have never completed the 'simbang gabi.' I basically have tried many times to complete the whole 9 nights but then, there were unexpected events and scenarios happened in the past which were the reasons of not completing it. I am planning to complete the 9 nights this year, hopefully this will be a success.




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edencaga

Yeah! that's true. Me too I am hoping to complete the 9 consecutive mass this December. Others wanted to complete the "simbang gabi" because a lot of folks said that if you completed the 9 days of mass, one of your wishes will be granted. I just heard it from my bestfriend who's active in church until now. Maybe before, that's one of my reason why I want to complete the mass but now that I've grown up and I was able to know and understand the presence of Christmas and the simbang gabi, it changed me like I wanted to listen to the gospels and the stories of our beloved priests. Although I already heard and knew the gospel, it reminded me that Christmas is around the corner and it's almost birthday of Jesus Christ so since its his birthday, we will be celebrating his birthday thru showing him how important hearing those gospels in church and of course thru loving, forgiving and giving each other's gift. I am very excited when Christmas is coming as I get to see my relatives,friends and family.




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NesMarcos

I feel you. Many wanted to complete the 9 consecutive days of mass because there was a hearsay that if you do complete it, a wish will be granted. However, thinking how important the gospels being taught and heard in the mass, wish is fine but learning and hearing more of it is better. As we grow older, we have learned how blessed we are for hearing the gospels of God and his beloved son, Jesus Christ.




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peachpurple

My parents do not celebrate Christmas after I was married. In the past, my mom would set up the fake Christmas tree in November, but presents and Christmas cake, goodies and even make ornaments. She used to play the Christmas carol songs on cassette tape too.




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TutuBie13

Yes, playing Christmas carol songs will really put you in the mood.




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aeon

Yeah, Christmas carol's plays during the day in our house too, and we are waiting for children to come and ask for some gifts. And actually even the kid is not our relatives, we give them small amount of money.




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superlicca

You are right. We also play Christmas carols in our home and it really makes me feel that Christmas is coming. And we give gifts to kids in our neighborhood. But what we give are just candies and chocolates that are packed using colored cellophane. These might be simple but look great for kids.




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aeon

Yeah, gifts are better compare to money, but I'm really bad on ideas what best gift for them, and I don't have time for gift wrapping. This is the traditional Christmas in our country, and right now, I saw a lot of Christmas decors near my apartment, but in our family, we do that after the all souls day.




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superlicca

That is right. I would also love to receive a gift instead of money. You will really feel the spirit of Christmas. I always find time for gift wrapping, this is something that I love to do since I am good at it. When it comes to decorating our home, I prefer to do this in the first week of October. But yes, I know that some people prefer to do this after the all souls day.




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Steve5

That's kind of sad. I guess not everyone is able to spend merry times during the holiday season. Sometimes a simple meal together with the family is enough to bring festive cheer. We usually just go to church and enjoy the rest of the day.




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amelia88

We've started a tradition of buying Christmas PJ's for the kids which they love - they wear them on Christmas Eve and it really gets them in the spirit!

I also really like baking Christmas cookies and watching Christmas movies in the lead up to the big day.




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TutuBie13

Aww, i"m sure the kids look so cute in their PJs. That will really set them in the mood for Christmas.




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amelia88

It does! I think it's one of those things that reminds them that the Christmas season really is here. They're still quite young so doing fun things like that really does set the mood for the festive season for them.




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Zelmontero

This is really cute. Matching Pj's for the kids is really adorable. My mom usually do this sometimes and when I'm younger I remember hating it. But, now I miss this kind of thing. Its like a bond between your siblings.




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amelia88

Hahaha! Yes - when you're a kid those kind of things can seem cheesy or goofy when your parents want you to do them, but when you look back it's definitely something that brings about some nostalgia!




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ballyhara

Oh we have a PJ's Christmas tradition too. Usually we tend to include PJ's in the regular family gift exchange, so that way we can go to sleep in our new PJ's. That is considered a good luck issue in our family. So, you can see everybody trying to say what kind of PJ they want for Christmas days before. Maybe is kind of silly, but we really like to keep the tradition, and we include the kids and new babies that come to the family too.




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Steve5

I'd like some of those Christmas cookies. My favorite is the warm home baked ones with chocolate chips. It just tastes so good. And it blends so well with cold milk. It brings back so many memories.




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superlicca

I love Christmas cookies too. I also love the gingerbread man. I see a lot of it during the Christmas season and even the gingerbread house. I think these breads are really for holidays. I am excited to buy them for Christmas Eve.




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Steve5

That's also my favorite. I don't know why but I think of ginger whenever I hear gingerbread man. I'm not sure but I think part of their main ingredient is ginger. It might be what gives them their distinctive spice in terms of scent.




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superlicca

You must be right. I did a research and I found out that gingerbread refers to a broad category of baked goods, typically flavored with ginger, cloves, cinnamon and sweetened with honey or sugar. I also like the story of the gingerbread man. I am not sure if you read that but it is great!




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Steve5

That's interesting. I feel like Christmas food has such a rich history. Whatever type of baked goods we have, we'll surely find meaningful stories behind them.

I actually remember a sad story about gingerbread man. It was kind of creepy because he ended getting eaten in the end. What a way to end a children's story.




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superlicca

I also think that there is a story behind Christmas food and they are interesting to find out. And yes, Gingerbread man is a story for children. The gingerbread man was able to escape from others but not from the fox. The fox was smart enough to find a technique on how he can eat the gingerbread man.




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Steve5

Again, as a child, that would have been scary. But now that I think about it, it's got nothing on old Grimm tales in the past.

Did you know that the original stuff fairy tales was inspired from had dark tales? In fact, they're so horrifying that children were terrified to not do as they were told back then.

Apparently, their purpose was to keep children well-behaved.




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superlicca

Yes, I am aware of that. My sister told me about true stories behind classic fairy tales. The first collection of stories was based on actual and dreadful events. But they had to change it and provide a desirable presentation of these stories in order to sell books.




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Martinsx1

Gifts is our favorite Christmas tradition over the years as long as I can remember. As September signals the dawn of Christmas in advance, every preparation for the great Christmas celebration starts today. So, all of my family members who are far and near have already started making plans on buying lots of gifts to exchange amongst ourselves.




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TutuBie13

I love buying gifts for my family and friends too. Looking for that perfect gift is part of the over-all experience. Knowing that when your loved one will open your gift, you will see that smile on their faces.




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Martinsx1

Gifts are very special especially when they come from your loved ones who love and care for you so much. It doesn't necessarily mean the gift must be what you love but as long as it comes from someone special to you, you are definitely going to value and cherish it so much.




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Chinet23

Gift giving for us is something that we can make up for as a family. I mean my parents and my siblings who are married. We can no longer keep the old family tradition of celebrating Christmas together because we already have our own lives and live far apart. So we'd usually give gifts even if Christmas is already over.




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mark8625

Same here. I cant wait to buy presents from love ones. Shopping very discounted items give me more fun. I love to share my blessings from my entire years to my family and friends. Christmas is for kids and giving thanks to Him.




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Chinet23

So an adage goes, "You can give without loving but you cannot love without giving". It's by giving gifts that we show our love and appreciation to our loved ones especially at this time of season.




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mark8625

That is right. I cant wait to do it again. Shopping and wrapping gifts to our family and friends are one of the most exciting part of christmas. I enjoy their happy faces when they receive their gifts. The feeling is very joyful and happy at the same time.




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lei08pineda

We also did exchange gifts. It is so nice to give and receive gifts. Before, I love receiving gifts, and some says it is only for kids, but now as an adult, I still like it. Buying gifts and thinking what kind of gift can you give to a specific person is fun for me. It might be stressful for some,but it is not for me.




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Steve5

It's nice to know that. Many feel that gift giving has become a burden for them. It may be due to feeling obligated when really others just want to be with us. Most people find that being in the presence of your loved ones is more than any material gift.




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Zelmontero

I love giving and receiving gifts in Christmas. It is one of the highlighted event in Christmas. Exchanging card is also a good tradition in Christmas. It is more personal and thoughtful.




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Steve5

Me too. I think gifts in general are something celebrated in all occasions. But there's a special meaning to it for Christmas time. It reminds us of selflessness and charity in the midst of whatever's going on in our lives.

It inspires to love others without expecting anything in return. So much of what we do during the holidays is about improving and becoming a better person. This is why I love this season above all else.




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edencaga

In Philippines its really our tradition where in when it is already "ber" months, folks here starts to count from the 1st day of September until December 25 and starts decorating some christmas decorations. Malls also starts to play some Christmas songs as if its already December. So here in Philippines, you can really feel that Christmas is around the corner.




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Jenniferdainty

As soon as the calendar hits September, my family starts decorating our house with Christmas adornments. The first thing we will put up is our Christmas tree. Yearly, we always have a motif for our tree and for this 2018, it's gold and silver. Christmas lights will not be absent too and it is my favourite of all. It gives additional lights inside and outside our house. The lights that shine brightly gives me unexplainable happiness and excitement for the most awaited occasion which is Christmas.




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amelia88

Wow - that's early compared to my country. It's usual tradition to start decorating after Thanksgiving which is late November - so we don't really have decorations up for all that long.




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Jenniferdainty

Yes, that's very early. It's normal for people from other countries to be surprised by our early preparations. Most of the locals in our country are also greeting each other "Merry Christmas" once it's already September 1. I guess we're really excited and eventually, it became part of the tradition.




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amelia88

I love that though! Christmas is one of my favorite times of year, so to be able to enjoy the season for a longer amount of time is lovely. Makes me happy to know that in your country, people get several months of enjoying that special Christmas feeling.




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superlicca

Decorating your home with Christmas decors is so exciting to do. That is something that I love to do when the ber month starts. In our home, I always make sure to put decors all over our house. I want to feel the spirit of Christmas by seeing beautiful decorations.




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aeon

You're right, "Ber" months is the start of Christmas in our country. Some family starts to decorate their house this month and some of them after the all souls day. During this time, I'm just waiting for some parties from my friends and relatives, and I'm just waiting for free beer and foods from them. LOL.




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Barida

It is also easier for you to make some savings by buying the things that you need to decorate your house at this particular time as well. This is one of the reasons that I always get my Christmas tree at this time since it is going to save cost.




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aeon

Yeah, a simple Christmas light on my window is enough for me, and actually, I'm using that for almost three years and still working properly, and honestly, I don't feel the Christmas and the new year since I started to work in a bpo company 6 years ago. There's is no holiday break in this industry, but the thing I like is, double pay during this holiday seasons.




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rlpzbeermoney

My family's Christmas tradition is basically going to other peoples' houses to eat. I don't know if I should be embarrassed but my family isn't really the hosting kind. Though it's really awkward interacting with people at the parties you don't even know. I'm from the Philippines by the way.




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superlicca

The Christmas tradition that I and my family love to do is the Gifts giving. Every Christmas Eve everyone is so excited for this tradition. It is also great to open your presents while having a Noche Buena. Aside from gifts giving. I also love to share our food with neighbors. It is a tradition that people in our area will share their food for Noche Buena. Writing this article makes me really excited for Christmas. This season makes the surroundings colorful and lively at night with the Christmas lights and other decors.




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ajahcuizon

I agree with what you said about Christmas. I also experienced that my parents asked us to write our Christmas wish and put it in a sock then they will ask us to hang them in our window so that Santa won't have a hard time getting our wishes. When the Christmas eve came, me and my siblings were really shocked because we saw so many gifts under our Christmas tree and that made us very happy. I was just a 7 year old child that time. Then we celebrated Christmas Eve, or what we call here in our country "Noche Buena", by eating the foods that we all prepared together. I could say Christmas Eve is really the day where we can all spread and share our love with each other.




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esteban123

Since beer months is now coming, I am sure that everyone would be excited again to put back their Christmas decorations to celebrate the Christmas season. I had been celebrating Christmas for how many years already since it was a long time tradition for Christian religion. I really enjoy it because it is full of fun and excitement. I am happy to celebrate Christmas with my entire family.




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Youngshark

Decoratioms are not that much of a tradition in my nation and hence our houses are rarely decorated at the feative seasons. I have however vowed to introduce the habit in my neighborhood and location. I have bewn known to introduce all kinds of fancy during the said celebrations.




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NesMarcos

Christmas is the time for sharing, time to spread love and happiness, and lastly, it is the best time for the people to be united especially families, relatives and even long lost friends. In the country where I live in, the Philippines, September 1st is the start of Christmas season. The people in my country are starting to do the countdown from the start of the day up to the last day before Christmas.

My family celebrates Christmas in a traditional way. My family prepares Christmas decorations as early as October. We put lanterns, wreaths, and Christmas lights all over the house. Then we set our Christmas tree with all the decorations like Christmas balls, Christmas lights, garlands, baubles, ribbons, tree topper, skirts and picks. Then, we start to buy and wrap gifts in November.

When December hits the calendar, this is the best countdown ever. Everybody is so busy and into rush mall sales. Of course, the traffic is moderate to heavy and the worst is bumper to bumper. The night before Christmas, we have our midnight dinner which is called Noche Buena. All our family's favorite food is served. Of course, our favorite roasted pork and chicken are always present in the feast. After having our midnight dinner, we are going to give gifts and money to children and family members. We also do some fireworks display. On Christmas Day, we go to Church together and after that, do some family gatherings or reunion. A very amazing and lovely celebration, indeed!




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Chinet23

We have the longest celebration in the Philippines and once we hit the so-called ber-months, we are already making our countdown. Exchange gifts and Noche Buena, (the Spanish word for Christmas Eve, a feast for the whole family), giving gifts to godchildren and attending Christmas worship service are among the things we do together as a family.




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fishbate

Christmas is a long awaited month for my kids, this is where they expect gifts and other events in the family. We usually just go out for dinner or a vacation during the holidays. But of course as a christian we always see to it that we have time to give our thanks to god for all the blessings we are having.




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Steve5

It's like a thing to go out during special occasions. Christmas is one of them. People love going to fun places and enjoying the festivities. It's also nice to have seasonal delicacies like eggnog and similar holiday delights.




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wallet

I think is too early to start celebrating Christmas, we start to celebrate it on 1 December, as a tradition we like to offer gifts and make nice surprises to our family and friends.




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Kakashi2020

One Christmas family tradition we always observe is to hear Midnight/Early Morning Mass or Misa de Galo. We would go to the church at around 4 AM and here mass until 5:30 AM. After the mass we would eat festive rice cakes or bibingkas which resembles pancakes but instead made out of rice flour and cooked using charcoal. It has cheese, margarine, salted egg slices, sugar and grated coconut meat as toppings. We always eat these tasty rice cakes after, I feel that eating it is another family Christmas tradition.




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mdayrit

When I was little, we used to spend Christmas in my grandparents house in the province. There, people visits each others house. Whether you are a relative or not, you will be asked to eat and stay for a while. Kids are given gifts or even just a small amount of money as gift. We save this money in bank or for buying a toy that we really want to receive for Christmas.




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fishbate

Its really good to have a visit on old folks and other relatives on the holidays. It's a good bonding and a get to know more event specially when it's often you see each other. The kids will definitely love the gifts, that's why they very much awaited by children's.




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edencaga

It was just yesterday when we started decorating our house with christmas tree. I can hear some christmas songs coming from stores or houses while walking on sidelanes which I remember that it's already September. Same as you, giving each others gifts is our tradition until now.




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anchoreztin

The moment I saw the "-ber" term in the first paragraph, I knew that you are a Filipino. You guys, spends Christmas the longest. I have visited a mall in Makita where during the last 3 days of August I can here Christmas melodies. Then September 1, mall staff starts to decorate the mall with Christmas decors.
It bizarre to see such tradition. Who else do that? I thinks only Filipinos.
Anyway, back to the question, my favorite tradition during the yuletide season is when we give each other gift. The we drink wine during dinner. Christmas is not as extravagant and lively as Thanksgiving but you can definitely feel the strong family bond during Christmas.




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Chinet23

Back when I was younger, in our home church, Christmas was more meaningful because we had a lot of activities lined up during this season. It was week long. We had presentation, Christmas carols and worship services. As Christians, we made sure that the Christ, is the reason for the season.




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vinaya

I am a Hindu and I do not celebrate Christmas. When was growing, I lived in a Hindu society and did not know about Christmas tradition. When the democracy was introduced in the country, religious freedom was granted. This allowed us to learn about other cultures.
I did not have a Christian friend in college and university, therefore, I never saw how Christmas was celebrated. I learned about the Christmas tradition only when I was a professional.




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NesMarcos

Thanks for sharing your experiences. I know some religions and cultures do not celebrate Christmas because they also do not have it. Meanwhile, I have just got curious since you do not celebrate Christmas. What do you think about Christmas celebration? Have you ever received a present from a friend who celebrates Christmas?




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vinaya

When the country declared a republic, Christmas was accepted as festival and a national holiday. I went to Christmas parties with my friends, interestingly these parties were organized by people who were not Christians or had nothing to do with religion. I have never received a Christmas present or given a Christmas present to anyone.




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romyter013

I remembered the non stop laughing with my cousins and uncles and aunties with different conversation, saying hi hello to everyone, greeting each other. Some are from abroad and had their vacation leave to be here with family in the Philippines. Parlor games for everyone is a must! It started with the kids, next the teenagers, the adults and for couples. The family host make sure everyone will enjoy on the reunion. The food are all awesome. I always line up for dessert haha my favourite! And the best part is one member of the family must participate to represent and perform a dance for everyone. My dad always choose me to participate. And for some reason i always win, I guess I'm lucky. My dad already passed away, had my own family and kids and I never had a chance to go back again there. I guess it will only hurt me more to be there and because I know i will never see my dad there cheering for me. I love my dad for loving me for what I'am.




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Kakashi2020

Gift Giving on Christmas Day is a holiday tradition we always follow. Also giving out money to family members on New Years Eve.




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Therese16

We set up our Christmas tree, Christmas lights, and other Christmas decors as early as September. Our family is always excited about Christmas. It is my favorite holiday and as early as September we would plan our gifts for our godchildren. Before Noche Buena, we would go to the church as a family and see/visit relatives and greet them a happy Christmas. It is such a warm and a very special feeling that makes me happy every time I remember it. After we goto church we would wait until midnight to welcome Christmas day and enjoy the delicious dinner that my brother prepared. The thought of Christmas gives me countless happy memories. Celebrating this tradition makes me feel thankful to God for sending Jesus to save everyone, it is the heart of the tradition and
the most special above all.




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mark8625

Yeah we are almost the same when it comes of preparing the Christmas tradition. Christmas is all about the family it is like basically a thanks giving in the United States. The true essence of christmas is about caring a family where we all started and remembering Christ Jesus birth.




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blackmist

Christmas is the time when all the members of the family are gathered. Exchanging gifts are not that common but we go out to a good venue and have a picnic. It is also a bonding for the children to meet their cousins. Carols are also common that's why you can really feel the essence of Christmas.




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Steve5

I think so too. It's the time of the year where everyone comes together. This celebration certainly brings families back to each other. We often don't get to see most of our relatives until this special holiday.




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Kakashi2020

One family Christmas tradition I like is the Christmas morning gift giving. This happens every 8-9 AM on Christmas morning and has been a family tradition since before the second world war.




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Aeolos

Before the Noche Buena, our family will go to church to attend the mass. I guess this kind of tradition is very well known for any Catholic. In this moment we thank God for the blessings He gave us for the year. After that, we will enjoy the delicious food serve during Noche Buena.




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jaymish

I love christmas. Not because of all the presents. I mean you can only have so many presents. I love it because of the human face. I love that a light bulb comes on and the world is happy. I wish we were like that the whole time. I love that the whole world is shopping and looking for gifts. I love that they are Christmas tress and lights everywhere(I wish my Country put up christmas lights in September, I would love that truly) I love also that the whole world slows down for around three weeks. My best season ever!




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mitan143

My family don't have a special Christmas tradition celebration. We usually do the common things like preparing a lot of foods and gifts, but what we really don't forget to do is to get together especially that we only few members in the family to celebrate. As we already gathered right before the 25th of December, that's the time we solemnly prayed together to thank God for the blessings, guidance, good health and a lot more to thank.




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Marako0406

The only thing that I want to continue with the Christmas tradition is the art of giving. Of course giving gifts are special and I believe that the true meaning of Christmas is not just giving something to your friends, family and loved ones but also sharing the love, your blessings and doing good deeds to anyone and expects nothing in return.




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Steve5

I like the idea. However, it's hard to actually accomplish. As much as we want to be generous and sincere, often times we're left feeling empty. It's somewhat become customary to the point that friends and family think badly of you if you don't follow it (like when you don't prepare gifts).

I guess it's better not to give if it's not done wholeheartedly. Otherwise, it would only make you feel bad about yourself. Sorry if I sound negative. Just sharing based on experience. Hahaha!




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Tronia

Damn, your malls start decorating for Christmas in September?? That's crazy to me. I remember when I was younger, we started to decorate literally two/one week prior to Christmas but now it has all changed. In my country, they begin around the end of October. I'm not a huge fan of it because it's way too soon but hey.

Regarding the family traditions, we don't really have any special ones except all coming together on the Christmas Eve, giving each other gifts and enjoying a nice meal.




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ballyhara

That's what I was thinking when I first saw the post. I was like... wait... Christmas decor in September? that's going to be a massive Christmas shopping. We tend to put Christmas items around ending of October, but more into November. Family tradition includes a Christmas tree, and a Nativity scene, also if you talk to my dad, it involves a lot of Christmas lights, that certainly can leave anyone blind. Don't worry, we make sure he gets some kind of control hahaha.




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stbrians

During Christmas we often sing Christmas carols and recite biblical verses about the birth of Jesus. We buy gifts for each other. Often new clothes and foorwear are bought. It is the festive season.

Normally there is family get-together. It is good when members of the family assemble from various towns just to be st home.




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ballyhara

We tend to do that too. Usually, we like to wear new clothes and shoes on New Year's day. Families like to go to the church, and attend the holiday Mass, and most of the time, they do a recreation on the Nativity, by reading the story, while people are dressed as The Holy Family, shepherds, and even the three Wise men/Wizards.




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coolavender

Our present situation makes it nearly impossible to continue with the traditions we have enjoyed as children. As fundamentalist Christians now, we no longer attend those pre-dawn masses nor attend mass at Christmas Eve. We've also lost so many loved ones that our extended family can no longer enjoy those big family get-together during Christmas day. With two other siblings and too few children between us, Christmas celebrations will never be like it was before.

However, some things have remained and we are holding on to them. One is celebrating Christmas Eve in a simple way in remembrance of the simple birth of Jesus Christ, our Savior. Another is making Christmas Day special for children through gift-giving and a get-together party to strengthen the ties among our children.




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Gilgamesh

Here in Nueva Ecija we prepare many foods occasionaly especially on christmas, we will eat it in midnight this tradition is called 'noche buena'. Before the christmas comes we will go out in our house each night to sing a song in each houses, we earn some money by doing it but the most important thing is by doing it were able to transcend the spirit of the christmas into other people. We go to church each evening and many of us do try to complete the attendance into the said mass because you can make a wish if uou complete it, after attending into the mass some foods are available outside like 'bibingka' and 'puto bung-bong' which is really delicious. We give gifts in the day of christmas and we blessed the elederly to show the sign of respect. It is very happy that we have a unique tradition.




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amelia88

I've never heard of those foods before - what are they made of?

Love that you pay respects to the elderly, that's a lovely tradition!




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Patrickdim

Most of the people here in the Philippines are so excited
when September start because that means the start of Christmas celebration. Most of us start to decorate the things that symbolizes Christmas they put all the Gifts under the Christmas tree and children put their sacks on the window so that if santa clause came he can easily put his gift on that. Others spend there Christmas in there love ones family friend having a noche buena in their own house and we always have a Christmas party were we have games for children , a lot of food in the table and exchange gift and most of all giving gifts to everyone is the highlight of the party.




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Kakashi2020

We have this Holiday tradition in our family started 75 years ago by my grandfather. Buying a Cheese Ball and a leg of Ham on or before December 15. The Cheese Ball brand would either be Pato or Marca pina and cost about $20 for a 1.5kilo ball of cheese, it would be eaten at breakfast and would last until new year's eve. The leg of ham on the other hand costs about $60-$150 depending on the brand and size. I would cook it in pineapple juice, cloves and brandy on December 23 and it would last until new year's Eve.




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DenisP

They start putting up Christmas decorations in September? Jeez, and here I am thinking that even November is too early sometimes.

In any case, I don’t think my family really ever had any unique Christmas traditions. We’ve always done the typical routine that most families do. On Christmas Eve we all get together and have a big dinner (usually consisting of fish, roast chicken, and plenty of desserts) and then after everyone has had their fill, we exchange gifts. Christmas Day itself is usually just a time to relax, watch some Christmas shows/movies and chow on some leftovers.

Oddly enough, I can say we pretty much celebrate Christmas Eve more than the actual holiday itself.




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amelia88

I've actually found that here, a lot of people are doing that too - celebrating more on Christmas Eve than Christmas Day. Or, if they've got family scattered around, they'll celebrate with one side of the family on Christmas Eve and the other side of the family on Christmas Day. Double the fun, I guess!




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DenisP

Double the fun, and also double the pounds tacked on from all of that holiday feasting! Haha.

I think that my family has always celebrated Christmas Eve more because it’s less formal than the actual day. On Christmas Eve, a lot of us would not only stuff ourselves full of food, but would also crack open a couple of beers or have a few glasses of wine.

On the other hand, Christmas Day feels like more of a day of respect. I can’t say that it would feel right to overeat or drink alcohol on what’s supposed to be the birth day of the savior of humanity.




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amelia88

Oh gosh, yes! It's definitely something you've got to be wary of...all those delicious foods can add up calorie-wise pretty quickly!

I definitely feel the same way - Christmas Eve feels more relaxed and more informal. Christmas morning here is when many people go to church too, so yes...it definitely has more of a formal vibe here too.




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jayjaydimson

In our family Christmas tradition, Of course, we are going to church on the Christmas Eve to celebrate Christ birthday. And after that, we will eat together at home the food that is prepared by my mom, and we are also having some alcohol drinks after the meal to celebrate Christmas Eve.




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Kakashi2020

One of my favorite Christmas Traditions is the Christmas VB Eve Feast. We would prepare a sumptuous feast for the family on the eve of Christmas Day so that's on December 24 dinner time up to midnight. It's also customary not to sleep until you've finished eating the Midnight Feast or Noche Buena and the whole family should be present.

Traditionally the feast should have special dishes like Ham, Quezo de Bola or Cheese Ball, Morcon and Embotido or Christmas meat loaf, different salads and meat dishes like caldereta, Kare Kare, Lechon and grilled meats.




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amelia88

So interesting to hear about all the different foods that are popular at Christmas. Here, most people have a similar Christmas meal to what they have at Thanksgiving - turkey, roasted veggies, different pies (apple, pumpkin, pecan) and things like that. Sometimes roast ham is popular too.




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kinja90

I have a lot of memories with Christmas in my childhood days. I tried caroling and just use two big stones as my music instrument. Then we group ourselves into two so it's like we can earn twice on the same house. When it reached midnight, we tie some sort of roofs, plastics, etc then run across the subdivision just to make a noise. Setup different types of fireworks. Celebrate with family, eat together, and my favorite part when I was a kid is doing exchange gift. Right now, I'm working in a BPO company so I usually don't celebrate Christmas anymore with my family. I'll just make it up with my family when it's off. You don't actually need to do all these things when it's Christmas. You can do these everyday. Give plenty of time with your family.




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jeffreyjose48

Our family Christmas tradition is just being with our family. We would unite as a family. Its called a Christmas vacation. We would spend a lot travelling by plane or boat just to be with our loved ones.




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romyter013

I remembered too beside the games we had for kids, teens, adult and for couples, the exciting part was when its 12 am, everyone greets each other and once done, all the uncles and aunties will go to the front and all of the grand children, nieces and nephews need to line up because everyone will received money. Its really exciting back then. Now I have kids and they'll be the one to take my place once they request every kids to line up again for their prizes.




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Youngshark

Where I grew up and live currently christmas is a time for unimaginable celebration. We have people coming from the furthest of locations just to meet up with their family. Slaughtering amd feasting is a given during such a period and it is a happy time for all involved.




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Kakashi2020

One of our family Christmas traditions is having a cake on Christmas Eve. And it should be a different cake every year. Last Christmas we had a big chocolate Cake adorned with cherries and chocolate bars and it was delicious.




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mark8625

Sounds great. Adding different cake every year is such awaited part in your christmas celebration. I can tell how happy your family about it.




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mdayrit

Now that I have my own family, me and my husband always make sure that we bring the kids to visit their grandparents on both side of the family. Since it is not that often that they see their grandparents, Christmas will be more special taking time to celebrate it with them. We ask them to write or draw the gift that they want to receive. We will put those gift under the tree when they are already sleeping to make sure that it will be opened on the morning of Christmas.




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Kakashi2020

It's our family tradition to set up our Christmas Tree every year on last week of November. It would take 3 days to set it all up including all decorations and lights. The whole family would helped out on this activity and by December 1 we would start putting gifts under it.




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NesMarcos

Setting up your Christmas Tree is indeed a great family bonding. The family is truly united in this matter, make the Christmas Tree looks amazing!

My family and I also share the same view. We decorate our Christmas Tree together, we make our friends and godchildren gift wrapping together, too.

Christmas is truly an incredible celebration for every body.




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Steve5

That's amazing. I like decorating our Christmas tree as well. I guess I prefer a simple design rather than a lavish one. Making elaborate decorations can be quite costly for most people. So we mostly settle on the essentials such as the Christmas balls and the star on top.




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Kakashi2020

On Christmas Day we would always go out to hear mass and for some Christmas Shopping. It's time for the kids to enjoy their Christmas money and buy whatever they like with it. Afterwards we would go to an amusement park and enjoy the day capping it off with a Christmas fireworks display.




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benjbautista

We usually spend our Christmas evening in province because we are hiding from our relatives that miraculously approach us only during Christmas season. I know this might sound bad to anybody who's reading this, but hey, it's better to spend your Christmas with the people who knows you 360 days of the year than people who only know you for a day. Toxic Filipino culture is real.




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deejaycee

As early as September 1, Filipinos start celebrating the Christmas season. Filipinos love playing Christmas songs everywhere they go. Even in jeepneys and buses, you can feel the love of Christmas season being shared by passengers.




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Steve5

That's so nice. I like that people there are celebrating the holidays so early. I've also seen people doing their Christmas shopping way before the last month of the year. They probably know how busy and crowded shopping malls can be once December arrives. I do mine around November.




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superlicca

That is right, you will hear Christmas songs at the malls and see their Christmas decors. It is only September but you will feel the spirit of Christmas and I think it is only here in the Philippines.




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theresajane

I agree with you. But, sadly, in our place, the Christmas season is not yet visible in our community. I also like in the Philippines, and it saddens me that the hype during September is not as great as it was before.




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jayjaydimson

Our family Christmas tradition, is we go together to the church, and we all eat together on Christmas eve.




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EfficientNinja

My family usually have a feast during Christmas and Christmas Eve. We also have a mini-reunion that lasts until New Year's Eve. Family members and relatives that work overseas go home to celebrate during this season.




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mystic14

strike of midnight? I won't be having kids. We mostly open Christmas eve. Have Christmas eve and day dinner for both sides of our families.




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Kakashi2020

One of our Christmas Traditions is to buy an uncooked leg of ham a week or two before Christmas. It's always the centerpiece of our dining table come Christmas Eve. I would cooked it 2 days before Christmas and this tradition was introduced to us by my grandfather. When I was young I would know that Christmas is fast approaching whenever my grandfather would come home with a cured leg of ham and a cheese ball which are both expensive and imported products.




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jayjaydimson

My family Christmas tradition is to eat together all at the same time when it's Christmas eve, and also have some alcoholic drinks for celebrating Christ birthday.




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esteban123

My family always celebrate Christmas with some food on the table, it was been a tradition for us to have some sort of get together have some fun since it is only once in a year and for also to give thanks for our lord for giving us a prosperous year.




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HappyLady

Our family Christmas is often on Boxing day so various members of the family can go to church, help the homeless, recover from gigs or whatever on December 25th. We often do the whole thing a day late. The Christmas morning stocking is delayed until the family Christmas day. We have stockings for children, a tree and decorations and the dinner always involves Christmas pudding and mince pies and brandy butter. In the morning we have a drink and open main presents. in the afternoon we open smaller, silly presents from the tree. As we also have a tradition of NOT spending much on presents at all, this results in a proliferation of silly or useful gifts mostly for under £10. Children get more, but we have never had it so there was an expectation of larger things even if that happens. My grown kids have said they really appreciate this. There is a lot of fun involved in choosing the silly presents and generally a family game. I would not want to lose the tree or our sensible present attitude.




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emiaj55

We used to have that same tradition, exchanging gifts and opening them up exactly at mid-night. But this year we are having a different Christmas, since we were recently orphaned. So the seven of us siblings, plus my brothers's wife and their only daughter (our only niece), would be having our first Christmas alone to ourselves. So hopefully we may still continue that family tradition and maybe start a new one.




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theresajane

I live also in the Philippines. But, sadly, the hype starting September isn't as big as what it was before in our place or even in other places. It's making me sad that people have to work hard, endure problems and such, forgetting to put out their Christmas decorations. As of the time of this writing, I honestly haven't seen decorations on my neighborhood. I still cannot feel the Christmas season here. Perhaps, on the last week of November. I'll still have to wait.




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Phiann30

Here in our country we are known for celebrating thelongest Christmas season in the world it starts in September whenit’s Sept. 1 it is expected to hear Christmas songs in the radio stations,
public places, malls, etc. Every families display their Christmas decors, Lanterns,
Christmas trees. Everyone is excited in this holiday season as they prepared
for their presents to their loves one and godchild, doing Christmas parties in
the office, schools, friends and families. Completing the nine mornings mass from
Dec. 16 – Dec. 24 is truly alive in most of all the catholic Christians and
of course after the said mass everyone is looking forward to eat our native
delicacies only prepared during this time which is ready to sell outside
churches anywhere in the Philippines. Christmas Carols too are very common and the highlight of the Yuletide season is theNoche Buena a traditional family dinner on Christmas Eve where everyone is
sharing and giving gifts in this very special occasion the birth of Jesus Christ.




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luv2xacosta

We love putting some Christmas Decoration in our house. We also put some Christmas around our Christmas tree. We also do some shopping before Christmas because some of the goods will be expensive during Christmas season that's we stock some goods ahead of time just to save some money.




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Wenkx03

Setting a christmas tree is my mom and I tradition. When winter season comes we used to start collecting things to hang in it. But now that she's gone, I guess im gonna set the christmas tree alone.




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mhingnhormz

Family Christmas tradition: As i remeber the last time I celebrate a christmas eve with my family is last 3years ago and i really miss to celebrate this kind of special occassion with them. Last year I celebrate chrustmas eve with my counsins that also work here in city, we're not able to go to our home town which is in province for the reason of the kind of work we had. We celebrate it with fireworks, prepared foods and having some fun like singhing and games.




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