In Norway, Trettendedagjul or today the 13th day of Christmas doesn’t have the same significance that it had when it marked the celebration of the baptism of Jesus. Nor is it any longer the day Christmas guests finally pack their bags and go home. Now, it is better known as the day the Christmas decorations get put away.
I love dragging out the putting away part. After all the rushing about and perfect making it’s nice to sink into the sofa and enjoy the lights from the tree as we ease back into the daily routine. Since it is not uncommon to put the tree up the night before Christmas Eve on “little Christmas Eve” it is nice with a few extra days to enjoy it*.
Stars in the windows come out the first sunday in advent but the tree, which is almost always real, gets to wait in the wings. There is a simplicity with a Norwegian Christmas tree that you don’t see often in the states. A homely little crooked tree with homemade ornaments and sparse lights, maybe some candles and quite often flags. It’s a refreshing change from the overly decorated trees that you often see in the US.
Oh, just so you know, I am not judging. I am also the owner of an overly decorated tree AND a homely, homemade tree albeit sans flags.
Here is a cute short film about someone trying to make up for Christmas sins.
Happy Epiphany!References: http://www.klikk.no/bolig/bonytt/article639339.ece http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Twelve_Days_of_Christmas http://www.trollheimsporten.no/ha-en-fin-trettendedag-6-januar.4667970-137312.html http://no.wikipedia.org/wiki/Helligtrekongersdag *Although I have noticed a tendency towards the middle of December but certainly not the end of November as often the custom in the US.