All These Holidays

Growing up in Canada, we didn´t celebrate the American Thanksgiving, ours is in October. My parents were Christian, so Halloween was out, too. For us, there was a big gap between Thanksgiving in mid-October and the festivities of Christmas.

Being the avid blog reader that I am now, I can´t believe how you Americans celebrate! One holiday after another, it´s got to be exhausting. And with Christmas prep starting earlier and earlier . . . well, I´m just glad I´m not from the US.

Here in Guatemala, there are plenty of celebrations, too, but most are in December and we are trying to incorporate both Canadian and Guatemalan traditions into our culturally mixed up blended family. So, we´ll be following my family tradition of setting up the tree and decorating on Dec. 1st, Irving´s tradition of burning the Devil on Dec. 7th, and enjoying posadas in the 12 days leading up to Christmas.

Dorian´s birthday is on Dec. 14th, he´s a Christmas baby! Really, because he was in the hospital for his colostomy after birth, he is a Christmas baby. He came home on Dec. 22, and we were so worn out from giving birth (me), running around finding money and doctors to help our baby (Irving), and traveling to the capital every day by chicken bus (both of us, me with stitches :o ) that we didn´t even put up a tree that year. Not that we had room, we lived in one tiny little room at that point.

So, we have Dorian´s birthday on the 14th, then my mom´s birthday is the 24th, which is also when Guatemalans celebrate Christmas. They usually hang out in the streets all night, with lots of fireworks and firecrackers going off at midnight, then tamales with the family. This is the first year that we will be getting Dorian up for this, so it will be exciting. Any gifts from Guatemalan relatives will be given at this point.

The next day, on the 25th, is Canadian Christmas! The boys will have stockings ( a very non-Guatemalan tradition) and gifts from us as well as any Canadian relatives. And there will be a traditional turkey (or chicken, since there´s just three and a half of us eating) dinner on Christmas Day. But since Irving is a musician, he has to play that night, so it will be more like a mid-afternoon meal.

Anyway, with all that, and then New Year´s . . . I just couldn´t deal with Halloween and American Thanksgiving on top! Good luck everyone and Happy Thanksgiving!

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