Christmas in Norway
Christmas is right around the corner, as people decorate their homes and prepare for their yearly holiday customs. This time of year, many people from Norway are doing the same. Norwegians decorate their homes with wreaths, gnomes, stars, gingerbread houses and sometimes a nativity scene, similar to other countries that celebrate.
Norwegian foreign exchange student Aicha Wiedswang, junior, said, “For us, it’s like doing things together that we’ve never done before or that we like to do.” On Christmas Eve, she and her family spend time together enjoying each other’s company. After dinner and before the evening present opening, the family grabs hands in a group of five or six people to sing and dance around their Christmas tree. That same night, they open presents, unlike how Americans typically open gifts on Christmas morning.
Family is a key aspect in Norway’s Christmas celebrations. Wiedswang discussed how important seeing her family is to her on Christmas because of how far away they live from each other. A large aspect of Christmas is eating a big meal with family. In Norway, some of their traditional dishes are salty meat and mashed potatoes. One of the traditional Norwegian Christmas desserts is called Kransekake. This is a cake that is made for both Christmas and New Year’s Day. Between Christmas day and New Year’s Day, people go into town to browse shops, exchange gifts and eat meals. Each tradition and geographic location has their own unique cultural Christmas customs. The holiday season is thought of as a popular time to share new memories with family and friends while celebrating cultural traditions.