Google Website Translator Gadget

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

French Christmas Traditions

I thought it might be interesting to research the different Christmas traditions from around the world.  This week, I thought I'd start out with France and next week I'll do a different country.

In France, Christmas is a time for family and for generosity, marked by family reunions, gifts and candy for children, gifts for the poor, Midnight Mass, and le Réveillon. The celebration of Christmas in France varies by region. Most provinces celebrate Christmas on the 25th of December, which is a bank holiday. However, in eastern and northern France, the Christmas season begins on 6 December, la fête de Saint Nicolas, and in some provinces la fête des Rois* is one the most important holidays of the Christmas season.

In Lyon, 8 December is la Fête de lumières, when Lyonnais pay hommage to the virgin Mary by putting candles in their windows to light up the city. *Epiphany (la fête des Rois) is usually celebrated the 6th of January, but in some places in France it is celebrated the first Sunday after January 1st.

 French Christmas Traditions:  French children put their shoes in front of the fireplace, in the hopes that Père Noël (aka Papa Noël) will fill them with gifts. Candy, fruit, nuts, and small toys will also be hung on the tree overnight. In some regions there's also Père Fouettard who gives out spankings to bad children (sort of the equivalent of Santa Claus giving coal to the naughty). In 1962, a law was passed decreeing that all letters written to Santa would responded to with a postcard. When a class writes a letter, each student gets a response.

Pere Noel in 1920 France
Source via ~

 Le Réveillon:  Although fewer and fewer French attend la Messe de Minuit on Christmas Eve, it is still an important part of Christmas for many families. It is followed by a huge feast, called le Réveillon (from the verb réveiller, to wake up or to revive). Le Réveillon is a symbolic awakening to the meaning of Christ's birth and is the culinary high point of the season, which may be enjoyed at home or in a restaurant or café that is open all night. Each region in France has its own traditional Christmas menu, with dishes like goose, chicken, capon, turkey stuffed with chestnuts, oysters, and boudin blanc (similar to white pudding).

 French Christmas Desserts:  Throughout the French Christmas season, there are special traditional desserts: La bûche de Noël (Yule log) - A log-shaped cake made of chocolate and chestnuts. Representative of the special wood log burned from Christmas Eve to New Year's Day in the Périgord, which is a holdover from a pagan Gaul celebration. Le pain calendal (in southern France) - Christmas loaf, part of which is traditionally given to a poor person. Treize desserts (in Provence) - nothing like going a little overboard during the holidays. La Galette des Rois (on Epiphany) - round cake which is cut into pieces and distributed by a child, known as le petit roi or l'enfant soleil, hiding under the table. Whoever finds la fève - the charm hidden inside - is King or Queen and can choose a partner.

La buche de noel (Yule Log)

La Galette des Rois
Source via ~

 French Christmas Decorations The sapin de Noël is the main decoration in homes, streets, shops, offices, and factories. The sapin de Noël appeared in Alsace in the 14th century, decorated with apples, paper flowers, and ribbons, and was introduced in France in 1837. Another important aspect of French Christmas celebrations is the crèche filled with santons, which is displayed in churches and many homes. Living crèches in the form of plays and puppet shows based on the Nativity are commonly performed to teach the important ideas of Christianity and the Christmas celebration. Mistletoe is hung above the door during the Christmas season to bring good fortune throughout the year. After Réveillon, its customary to leave a candle burning in case the Virgin Mary passes by.

Sapin de noel (Christmas tree)

Santons of Provence
Source via ~
Source via ~ French Traditions

Monday, December 3, 2012

Some pretty images for you!
Source via ~ http://inspiratiolane.tumbir.coom
I wonder if any of these letters are love letters?

Source via ~
The lacy background on the wall which is used as a jewelry hanging board is made with a stencil.  I thought it a very clever idea.

Source via !

Some things stand on their own and this chandelier is one of them!

Source via ~
What a grand entrance!  I j'adore this door how about you?

Source via ~ via Pretemps by Jadore

Source via ~

Source via ~

Source via ~ via/countrycupboard

What a wonderful way to spend an afternoon enjoying the weather!

Source via ~

Such a pretty vignette!

Have a wonderful day!

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Always Moving Things Around

I took several photos of vignettes that I have throughout our place and thought I'd share them with you.  I am forever moving things around and changing things for a different look.  Once, while husband was at a late dinner meeting I rearranged the living room furniture.  I was already in bed when he came home and was waken by a thud in the living room.  Seems he didn't turn a light on so as not to disturb me and went to sit down in the place where the chair used to be.  Ha  His bottom was the thud I heard.  Since that time, I just move small vignettes around and not massive furniture pieces remembering all to well the "shocking" words that he spewed as he fell.  Ha  I hope you enjoy the photos.

The sweet little framed angel picture was from my daughter while she was away in school in Belgium

You just can't have enough tea towels! At least I can't!

This sweet little tea pot was purchased from Simone of Fleaing France Brocante shop.(You can visit it here)  It also came with a sweet creamer too!

Do you move your things around or leave them in the same place?
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

Panama City, Florida