… dann vier, dann steht das Christkind vor der Tür.
Christmas Eve – in Australia this means one more sleep until children can open their presents and see what Santa Claus brought them, but this evening is celebrated a little differently in Germany!
Christmas Eve is not a public holiday in Germany, therefore many people leave work earlier and travel to spend Christmas Eve with their families – in the afternoon the Christmas tree is decorated (if it hasn’t been already) and in the early evening most families attend church. After families return home from church, it is time to open presents (Santa Claus or the Christ Child, depending on faith, goes to people’s houses during the church service to leave presents under the tree) and have a big family dinner.
The next day, December 25th, is fairly similar to Australia – aside from the weather and the food eaten! Most people spend the day with their families, eating and drinking. Typical food for Christmas Day in Germany is a roast goose or duck, red cabbage and boiled potatoes or potato dumplings. In the afternoon people usually enjoy sweet treats, such as Plätzchen (biscuits), Lebkuchen (gingerbread), Pfeffernüsse (gingerbread covered in sugar frosting), Stollen (a rich bread filled with marzipan and dried fruits) and Spekulatius (a type of biscuit flavoured with spices such as cinnamon and nutmeg). As the weather in Germany is much colder than in Australia, people enjoy these richer foods – unlike Australia where many people enjoy a big seafood lunch on Christmas day!
From our Oktoberfest family to yours – wir wünschen Euch frohe Weihnachten (we wish you a merry Christmas)!
Images and information retrieved from: