Ani Kamladze.Georgia -Samtredia
Hello, I’m Karina Roz’s friend, I lived in Armenia, now I live in Germany big part of the Christmas celebrations in Germany is Advent. Several different types of Advent calendars are used in German homes. As well as the traditional one made of card that are used in many countries, there are ones made out of a wreath of Fir tree branches with 24 decorated boxes or bags hanging from it. Each box or bag has a little present in it. Another type is called a ‘Advent Kranz’ and is a ring of fir branches that has four candles on it. This is like the Advent candles that are sometimes used in Churches. One candle is lit at the beginning of each week in Advent.
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Christmas Trees are very important in Germany. They were first used in Germany during the late Middle Ages. If there are young children in the house, the trees are usually secretly decorated by the mother of the family. The Christmas tree was traditionally brought into the house on Christmas Eve. In some parts of Germany, during the evening, the family would read the Bible and sing Christmas songs such as O Tannenbaum, Ihr Kinderlein Kommet and Stille Nacht (Slient Night).
Sometimes wooden frames, covered with colored plastic sheets and with electric candles inside, are put in windows to make the house look pretty from the outside. There is also the tradition of Scherenschnitte (paper cutting) where Christmas shapes like bells and nativity scenes were cut out of paper and then different colored transparent paper was put behind the openings to make them look like stained glass.
In Spain, one New Year’s tradition is to eat 12 grapes, one for every strike of the clock until midnight, to ensure prosperity. If you can finish them in time, you’ll have good luck all through the coming year. The flavour of the grapes -whether sweet or sour – also predicts what the year will bring. The tradition of the las doce uvas de la suerte (the 12 lucky grapes) is said to have originated in 1909 when a Spanish region has an exceptionally good grape harvest.