We're a bit light on tradition in our family, compared to you We've moved across the country (150 km, which is almost the other side of the country here in Belgium) from our family, so it takes some organising to keep everybody happy, and make sure we have some time for ourselves as well. Schools have Christmas holidays for 2 weeks each year, so we have to organise that period for the kids as well, in combination with our limited number of vacation days.
Normally, we go to my parents for Christmas Eve, and there we open all the gifts under the christmas tree we have for each other. You won't be surprised when I say that the vast majority is for the girls We're flexible in the timing.
Because we arrived around noon on christmas eve this year, we opened the presents then, taking into account we would leave the country 2 days later. That way, the girls had as much time to play with their newly received toys as possible.
These last few years, my parents-in-law have chosen to spend the Christmas and new year period in their appartment in La Caleta, on the gorgeous sunny island of Tenerife, and they invite us to come over for a holiday and see the fireworks. These last few years we were lucky that christmas came at the very beginning of the holidays, so we could spend almost 2 weeks there. I dare almost say this has instantly become a new family tradition. And believe it or not : the first day after we get here, we go to get a haircut, every time
Because we are always guests somewhere else, we try to suggest food that is easy to prepare, and try to help as much in the organising and the preparation the day itself. This year, on Christmas day, the journey was more important than the destination : grandpa making pizza from scratch with his granddaughters. Priceless to see the amount of fun they had, and the result was very tasty as well.
Climate wise, it's been since my teens that I can remember a white christmas. The last time we had really multiple days of snow was more than 10 years ago. This year, it even looks like we will break the record of the highest temperature ever in Belgium on the last day of the year : 16° Celcius - a nice spring day.
The first saturday of the year, the Mayor of Mechelen invites all his citizens to come together on the market plaza in the center of town, and have free drinks and free snacks to celebrate the new year. You can imagine it's a fun way to greet people also living in Mechelen you see only a few times a year, and it's very popular.
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