24 December 2008

Prettige Feestdagen

Yesterday we received boxes from the Mather family, and look what we now have hanging on our Christmas Tree:

Hyland's dad, Jim, has been passionate about wood carving for some time now. His carvings are very beautiful and detailed with a great deal of character.

Here is our humble little Kerstboom. It is really typical to get a huge tree in the US, but here, where people frequently have flats instead of houses and bikes instead of cars, there are far more smallish Christmas Trees.

We swore a few years ago that we would never buy a cut tree again. Two years ago, Hyland's nutty crunchy side kicked in and we got a big, fake white Christmas tree and happily decked the halls with it for two Christmasses running.

This year, Hyland got into the Christmas Spirit early and went out on the town op fiets in search of a tree and came home with this guy. Now we are sweeping evergreen needles from the floor daily, and swearing we're never going to get a cut tree again. Still, it is nice and it smells all piney.

This is another kerstboom ornament that was given to us. Click the photo for the full story.

Prettige Feestdagen is the equivalent of Happy Holidays in the US. Kind of incorporates all of the Feestdagen (literally translated: party days) that are celebrated. The Dutch generally keep Christmas for Christ, and have Sinterklaas (Dec. 5) for all the secular gift-giving. Boxing Day is celebrated here too - that is the day after Christmas. I have been told that there has been a rise in Santa Claus appearances at homes in the Netherlands, but that it is not the overwhelming commercialized event that is typical in the US.

Addison has been wrapping his toys in whatever kind of wrapping paper he can find and deciding who to give them to. It is really a sweet gesture. All he has are his toys, so that is what he has been wrapping to give people. It's the most genuine kind of gift giving. Remember that story about the wife who sold her hair to buy her husband a watch band and the husband sold his watch to buy is wife a comb for her hair? It's selfless like that.

Prettige Feestdagen, Fijne Kerstmis, much love,



Gayle Grace said...

Thanks for keeping us all up to speed... I gave up a tree when Pumpkin came into the house - now I keep a covered glass bowl on my table with all my small ornaments in it and candles on the mantle... have a wonderful holiday!

Gayle Grace said...

Malia: A couple of things - I wish you would put your candies and cupcakes on your craft blog... I've put you on the http://ChocolateandZucchini.com blog worldwide and had a heck of a time chasing these all down to enter them separately. Clotilde has made the cupcake - is that literally your pattern? Also I think you should put Penelope Craft link on this blog.

My own blog link has changed to http://www.allthingshomeblog.blogspot.com, so you may want to update that info on this blog.