Wishing you a Merry Christmas, to all Allchile.Net

General topics related to Living in Chile
El Lechero
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Re: Wishing you a Merry Christmas, to all Allchile.Net

Post by El Lechero » Mon Dec 23, 2013 11:42 pm

Merry Christmas to all, and a prospero 2014. Salud.

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Re: Wishing you a Merry Christmas, to all Allchile.Net

Post by jamie_m » Tue Dec 24, 2013 12:38 pm

The 4 stages of life:
1. You believe in Santa Claus
2. You don’t believe in Santa Claus
3. You dress up as Santa Claus
4. You look like Santa Claus

Merry Xmas everyone. Stay safe.

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Re: Wishing you a Merry Christmas, to all Allchile.Net

Post by SUPagogo » Tue Dec 24, 2013 2:20 pm

I post so infrequently, maybe this long one makes up for that. Happy Holidays to all.

Christmas in Chile.  We're stateside this year for Christmas.  It's early morning on Christmas Eve.  As I check the status of our tree (we got ours before thanksgiving, it's dry but had a good run). I am reflecting about what I miss about Christmas in Chile and when there, miss about Christmas at home.

I miss the fun we have picking a tree in Chile.  Driving up and down the back roads in Cahill.  Looking for the perfect tree top or sapling along the road.  The anticipation and fear of the property owner coming out with a shotgun.  I'm mixing a hillbilly and los gentes  de campo stereotype here, nevertheless, I'm a city girl without good Spanish in my back pocket. We nab the tree using our battery powered saw.  My husband carries it to the getaway car.  With a sense of relief we drive home.  When we get home, we mcguiver a pebble-filled jug to holds the thing in, we decorate the sparse branches with some tinsel from the store that sells junk I'd never buy while at home, but relieved for the convenience of having an overpriced 99 cent store in town.  We've made our own decorations too.  Our theme is ocean blues and greens.  Our Peruvian style long socks are hung by the bosca with care.  Our solar Xmas lights are a glowing.  True Christmas.  Our tree this year came from Home Depot.  It's a real tree at least.  

Every time, I swear I won't lug two duffle bags of gifts to Chile from home, but I do.  I have to buy like 20 of those teeny time rolls of tissue thin wrapping paper and "scotch". Do I have enough of one kind for the "from Santa" paper.  (I was relieved to know this year that the girls found out about this when they were about 8.). I, wrap, wrap wrap all night.  After we celebrate Christmas Eve.  Because that's what they do in Chile.

When we first went to Chile for Christmas with our kids, the Christmas was uncomplicated. A manger scene in the fire place with one gift for each kid.  That was it.  I brought with me the stress and the panic of not having enough and possibly scarring my kids for life.  (My husband always gave a chunk of money for someone to buy overpriced gifts that we could have brought for a fourth of the price in our luggage-for the cousins.) Which was reinforced when my two year old said after opening her gift,  "I don't want clothes, where are the toys?"  Yikes.  Fast forward to modern day chile.  Tinsel, Christmas music in all the stores, more malls than I can remember, Easy and Lider.  We look forward to being in our little house on the bluff, where in the privacy of our home we can open as many gifts as we like, or not.  

The idea of Christmas in the summer might be part of the reason that the whole consumer Santa thing took so long to get its claws in here. And takes the pressure off of me.  So I'd like to think.  It took me a while to get used to it.  A quiet sunny day, with a few peaceful days before vacation season is In high gear.  I do a BBQ and try my hand at some modified version of my winter Christmas dishes.  These usually go uneaten, for good measure.  I remember a couple of visits ago, I was looking for spinach to make my mom's spinach casserole. I asked everywhere.  I only got "what are you thinking" blank stare or rude comments about the fact that spinach is out of season. I ended up with old fibrous chard. And some overgrown  green beans that I couldn't roast the toughness out of.   I know spinach grows in the summer....but who can argue.  My friendly T.J.'s or Costco wouldn't argue with me!  Well, loh and behold, last trip, I found spinach.  In the same stall that had persecuted me two years earlier.  I didn't say anything.  My Spanish is not good enough to carry on a debate about spinach.  I wish it were.  The next challenge is to find sour cream, onion soup mix, seasoned bread crumbs and butter.  The assemblage I made....well thank goodness this time I was only serving to my family. (The only person who really eats this dish is my husband anyway.)  When I do get to see her during the holidays, I savor my mom's style and food.  She brings tradition alive.  I try, but my traditions keep morphing with our travels.  

Besides my peeps, something I miss about Christmas north of the equator is being far north enough for snow.  For me, snow makes  Christmas, well,  Christmasy.  Yes, in L.A. we have sun and maybe some freak 80 degree weather, but normally, it's chilly and damp but not cold or warm nor beach weather.  Here is the kicker.  My folks and daughter, live in the far north where there are seasons and reasons for snuggling indoors.  But, in order to stay afloat financially in this land of angels, we have to work so hard that there is no time to visit the people that matter the most.   If there is time, because we take time off work, there is no money.  The cunundrum of blue collar middle class is another story. I have to say, what I  miss most when I'm in Chile for Christmas  - my family.  I miss having my whole family to see, hear, hug, argue with, love.

 I feel stuck in purgatory here in L.A. lts really halfway between there and there.  

The beauty of Christmas in Chile is that the expectations around Christmas are low stress.  The beauty of Christmas for me here in the North is the idea of family.  Yet, Half of my family is 1,000 miles away already.  So what's the differene if they were 10,000?  Not sure yet. 

Well, all in all, I feel lucky to have both.  We are racking up good memories for my kids on both sides of our equator.  That's what counts most for me.  

I wish everyone enjoy a holiday season filled with love, enjoying what wherever you are offers.  

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Re: Wishing you a Merry Christmas, to all Allchile.Net

Post by Riyko » Tue Dec 24, 2013 5:15 pm

Merry Christmas to everyone :)
"por la muestra se conoce el paño"

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Re: Wishing you a Merry Christmas, to all Allchile.Net

Post by JHyre » Tue Dec 24, 2013 6:09 pm

Merry Christmas Ricky and all.

John Hyre

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Re: Wishing you a Merry Christmas, to all Allchile.Net

Post by jehturner » Wed Dec 25, 2013 12:50 am

Happy Christmas!

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Re: Wishing you a Merry Christmas, to all Allchile.Net

Post by bazzasoft » Thu Dec 26, 2013 6:44 pm

Wishing all of you, even those now banned, a Very Merry Christmas (what's left of it) and an equally Happy New Year.

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