So we did it! We made it through another Swedish Christmas. The first one where Little Swede could actually appreciate and enjoy some of the activities (after being talked down from his previous –No Christmas, no presents- position).
Here is a simple checklist of Christmas milestones we met or failed to meet this year:
Baking – Check! – This year we baked a lot more than last year, when I pretty much skipped the whole thing. The Lussekats were a win, but the gingerbread cookies were meh. When I asked other people what they do for gingerbread, it turned out everyone bought the damn dough from the grocery store – no one made it themselves. Must make note of this for next year.
Gingerbread house – Fail! – This is where my baking line gets drawn. Not going to happen trying to glue with hot melted sugar and a toddler and my crappy designing skills. Just no. If the Swede decides to give it a go in future years, I will gladly cheer from the sidelines. And maybe laugh a little, too. Besides these things always taste gross.
Found the almond in the rice pudding – Check!- This tradition was one I loved as a kid. We used to hide the almond and the person who found it had to keep it hidden until the meal was over and then return it for a prize. It seems not every Swedish family plays this game the same way. I found the almond this year. And man, it was not easy to keep the damn thing hidden while eating a bowl full of rice pudding. And then, well it turned out I didn’t have to. And all I got was a friggin wish.
Welcomed Santa Claus to the door – Check!
Santa Claus wearing a really scary mask that creeps me out – Fail –
Here in Sweden, Santa comes to your door with presents. It is awesome. But many families, to make this possible, use a really creepy Santa mask. Thankfully our Swede family uses a giant beard instead. I’m pretty sure the mask would have made Little Swede weep.