Guest – Sandy Salle
How do families from different countries celebrate Christmas around the world?
Everyone loves the holidays. You get to enjoy family traditions and pass them along to the next generation … but they take time and we don’t have an endless supply of time (how I wish we did). By adding extra activities to our busy schedule, it often means trying to do too much. It’s easy to end up so exhausted that we don’t enjoy ourselves. That’s why we’re hosting experts to share 24 holiday tips. We want to provide ideas for how you can simplify the holidays while maintaining your special traditions, especially when it means blending different customs from Christmas around the world.
Favorite Holiday Activity
At Sandy's house they have a lovely Christmas tradition that maintains awareness of the global community we're all a part of. They have their dinner on Christmas eve around 6pm. That's when Santa rings the doorbell to deliver pajamas for all the kids. He doesn't stay long as he's got many more stops around the world, to deliver gifts to cousins in the UK, Australia, Africa and many other countries.
3 Tips: Blending Traditions from Christmas Around the World
Sandy grew up in southern Africa so it shouldn't surprise you that she's the founder and President of HillsofAfrica.com, where she shares her passion for all things Africa. Her business is all about people, and helping others learn about different cultures as they explore the magic that is Africa. It's a wonderful place to visit (read about my life changing visit to Africa in 2012) – the land, the fauna and 4-footed friends and most important, the people who have evolved culture based on the world around them.
So here are the ways in which Sandy blends the best traditions involving Christmas around the world:
- Invite friends, lots of friends and make them part of your extended family. Sandy knows it can be lonely for people who don't live close to family so she invites many people to join her family for holiday activities. She loves hosting big parties (there will be 26 for Christmas dinner), and she's not afraid to ask each guest to bring a dish or two, especially ones that remind them of their holidays at home.
- Include some physical activity in your holiday schedule. For Sandy's family, they have a late brunch on Christmas day followed by a midday soccer match. For Sandy's family, this tradition dates back to her parents farm where they included the farm workers in this holiday tradition.
- Collect holiday ornaments from the places you visit, to bring back memories each year as you decorate your home. Sandy loves her chili pepper from Mexico, a champagne bottle from France and a beaded rhino from Africa. Each represents the people and the experiences she had while visiting those countries.
To listen to Sandy and I talk about holiday traditions from around the world, click below …
Most Important Holiday Goal
For Sandy, her most important goal for the holidays is spending quality time with her family. To do this she knows she must let go of her to do list for a few days, in order to be present in the moment. She also enjoys watching silly movies as a family to bring everyone together.