god jul / merry christmas 2017

this year we spent christmas in gothenburg. my first christmas here.

the festivities started on the 23rd with “uppesittarkväll” (“stay up evening”). it’s a 4 hour christmas-themed bingo lottery program on tv, filled with live performances and tons of people who very well may be celebrities. we bought our bingo cards at nordstan, the mall in town. you can enjoy the show without playing along, but every hour there’s a bingo where they call numbers out and you mark your card. if you get a whole row, you can win anything from another bingo card (in jimmy’s case), nothing (in my case), or a brand new car (in rare cases.. although our friend’s mom won a car a few years back!). it’s a fun evening! although four hours is a bit much and by the end i was falling asleep.. or fell asleep is probably more accurate.

then it was the first 24th “julafton” (“christmas eve”). that’s the big day here when everyone celebrates christmas. we started the day like proper swedes with traditional rice pudding and by lighting the fourth and final candle of our “adventsljusstake” pictured to the right:

by 2pm it was time to catch the tram to meet the family in mölndal, just a 45 minute ride south of our home. we arrived just in time to watch the donald duck program on tv. all swedish families tune in at 3pm on christmas eve to watch donald duck. it’s an hour-long collection of a bunch of disney clips that’s become a tradition here since the 50s or so.

once that’s over it’s time for “julbord,” the traditional christmas meal of ham, salmon, sausages, scalloped potatoes, herring, meatballs, and more. it’s a very defined table, so you don’t have to think much but it’s quite a variety so jimmy’s mom was pretty busy. 

the next day was christmas day (“juldagen”). we woke up, made biscuits for breakfast, and opened presents by the tree.

afterwards we headed into the city for a walk and did some shopping. we got some really cute old fashioned decorations on sale: a large christmas gnone holding a tree & a goat and another smaller one riding a pig. i would insert a picture but we left it wrapped up till next year. so that’s a teaser till next christmas 😉.

later in the day we called my parents and played some monopoly (i lost). i sure did miss being home with them and the rest of the family! ❤

now it’s the 26th “annandag jul” (“another day of christmas”). just a relaxing day. we’ll try to skype into the family get together in raleigh later on, and otherwise just hang out and recharge the batteries.

god jul från göteborg!