Sunday, December 26, 2010

CHRISTmas Around the world Part 3 Germany

Our CHRISTmas Around the World Study continues with Germany!

Froehliche Weinachten!!

Many of us know that Germany has many tradtions that we bring into our homes during Christmas today.
From the candy cane, to our christmas tree,  ginger bread cookies, advent calanders, glass ornaments; nutcrackers,  and the famous Silent Night carol.
There is even a neat US- Germamy comparision Christmas Chart you can look up online.

 "Holzknackl" ( Nutcracker)

But one thing we have really LOVED about being here around Christmas time, are all the Nativity displays we see at the Markets. Even live nativities, have been so beautiful this season, in such a simple way.

When we used to live in Alaska, you usually only saw a nativity in front of a local church as you drove by.

Some things we do notice in our daily life are Germans hardly decorate their homes outside for christmas. It is unusual to see Christmas lights over an entire house. They keep their decor very simple.
 And in our area, many place a real tree outside their front door and adorn it with faux lit candles. It's very pretty when a whole street participates.

There is always a large christmas tree in the middle of each Christmas market too. Those are always just beautiful.

Everything is closed early by Christmas Eve. Germans celebrate christmas on Christmas Eve, like many other european countries... many with church, a meal with family (close family) and christmas day for visits with extended family and friends. One person  usually stays behind while everyone else attends service... they put up the tree, and the presents and keep the door closed to the living room till it's "time." Another unique tradtion is the Christmas Angel. She is the one to bring gifts on christmas Eve, while St. Nicholaus is for Dec 6th.

So as we visit Christmas Markets we are always amazed by the JESUS "presence" in each place......
Come and see where we went the past few weeks!

St Wendel Christmas Markt with Live Nativity

Christmas Pyramid:
revolving on the SchloƟplatz, is rather gigantic. As an oversized edition of the filigran pyramids from the 'Erzgebirge' so well known, it has a height of 12 meters and thus is unique in the Southwestern part of Germany. The pyramid has wonderful hand-cut wooden sculptures, magnificiently arranged show-cases and a generous light decoration and is mostly the focus of interest.
This pyramid also has a nativity scene....

Can't go to a market without having waffles!!!

This was in the Midevil market, live music, jugglers, blacksmith, candle making it was really neat!

Here the kids were able to make candles.

This was so much fun for them!!!

Is SHE eating again??? that's a braut! can't go without one of those either!
Here, in front of a Large German "Smoker" These are for sale in many places here, especially around christmas. to see some amazing ones visit the Kathe Wohlfart shop online. You put incense in the bottom and the smoke comes up and out their mouth.. so cute!

JT in front of the Nutcracker display... He is fascinated by nutcrackers this season~
Kt at the Live nativity....freezing...

Camels...Nice touch.

Large hand painted nativity

There were several Nativity sets displayed on the street of famous german artists.....

Lots of food!

Today we were snowed in and church was cancelled.

 Our village barn put on a little Live Nativity presentation, which was so simple and sweet, and a great break in our snowy day.

We walked down, and had some gluwein, and yes...more waffles and bratwursts...
they read the christmas story in German... and that was that!
here are some pictures:

A traditional Drink at all christmas markets is Gluwein. Spiced Wine... it's toasty and yummy! They pour it in a keepsake mug, for a 1-2 euro deposit. if you don't want the glass, you take it back when you are done, and get your deposit back.

For crafts we made our own Nativity with the paper tubes. They loved this craft! And it will be one we save for years to come....

Christmas Around the World Unit Study
During our   Study of Germany we colored the German flag, colored a picture of a Germany boy and placed them on our Christmas Study Wall (that's about all you are getting out of me for school this past week!)

A GREAT movie to watch for your study, the kids watched tonight was  the

It's nearing Christmas in a small town in Germany. Hans the shoemaker works into the night, purposely shut away from the holiday festivities around him. Alone in his shop, with no family and few friends, Hans has never learned the true meaning of Christmas.

While he mocks the townspeople’s merry preparations, Hans is visited by an angel who brings the promise of a very special gift. Hans eagerly awaits the return of this angelic messenger and crafts a gift to give in return--the finest pair of red boots ever made. As the story unfolds, Hans learns the joys of sharing and fellowship, and finally embraces the spirit of Christmas as he does indeed receive the ultimate gift--a gift from God. A wonderful program to teach children the true meaning of Christmas.

It will touch your heart!!!

1 Thoughtful Comments:

Faith said...

I know I keep saying this, but you have such wonderful pictures! I was curious about one thing though- do your children speak/understand German? What a fantastic experience for them to be able to live in Europe! Thank you for sharing. I have told so many friends about your beautiful blog.

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