Friday, December 2, 2011

Swedish Christmas failure – not as integrated as I think I am....

It's Christmas season, and while I LOVE LOVE LOVE the lights, the spirit and the idea of Christmas, I do not like the work involved. I have, in the past, said that the best thing about not being Swedish is not having to get all wrapped up in the Swedish Christmas madness, and I stand by that statement. But now that Little Swede is getting bigger, there is a different type of pressure.

Today is Dec. 2, advent is upon us, and here are the many ways I accept that I will fail this Christmas.

  1. JULPYNT fail – we have an attic full of Christmas stars, Christmas candles, outdoor lights (I know its not very Swedish, but our courtyard always does a lot of outdoor lights) and more. And we still have an attic full of them. Hope to get them down this weekend – hope!
  2. Advent Calender frustrations – I decided it was time to get Little Swede an advent calender. I hit Panduro – a great store for crafts for the non-crafty. I picked up an advent calender made of wood, with 24 pull out drawers. The idea is you should paint your advent calender and decorate it in the Christmas spirit. I bought some number stickers. That is the extent of my craftiness. The saleswoman tried to show me an array of glitter glues and paints. Not going to happen. I accept that which I cannot change. I had planned to buy an advent calender for DH and I as well, and thought the Triss advent calender would be fun. Then I saw it cost 600 SEK. 600 SEK? For some lotto scratch offs? Seriously? I better friggin win 500 SEK if I spend that kind of money. There better be some kind of win guarantee. Because if I don't win for 600 SEK I won't just be my disappointed self like when I play megaball for 1 dollar and lose, I will be pissed. I did NOT buy the damn Triss advent calender.
  3. I have not baked anything yet. This time last year I had baked Lussekatter, kanelbullar and other Christmas yummies. Last year I was still on parental leave. This year? Not so much. I have bought quite a few this year already. Yum.

So as you can see, I am not very good at putting on a traditional Swedish Christmas. And I am 100% OK with that. I am happy to attend Swedish Christmas. I love spending time with family. But I am not going to be making chocolate, no gingerbread house design, and I refuse to set foot in IKEA for the entire month of December.

Hope you are all getting into the Christmas/Hanukkah/Kwanzaa spirit however you see fit!


  1. Good for you!
    I have noticed that every time I read a swedish-american blog, every single woman becomes a baker while living in Sweden. Every one bakes and bakes and bakes when they themselves indicate that they never did such thing while in the States. Do swedish people have so much free time that they want to bake all the time?

  2. If you want a garantueed win, chocolate calendar!

  3. I think you are doing absolutely the right thing and that is doing what you feel like, the way you like and not doing a lot of stuff just because it is the traditional and "right" way. Hell no wonder that people have severe stress problems in December with all the musts. I have not baked any Lussekatter this year and I must say I am kind of proud of myself almost. I normally always do bake them but this year I did not feel like it and decided I could always buy some if I wanted some. The important thing is to have a good time together and that you seem to have with your family here in Sweden.
    There are no must, just have a nice Christmas without a lot of stress :-)

  4. See, I love the idea of Christmas lights. I put them up one year, with my mom's boyfriend. It took the whole afternoon, and was not worth all that effort. Sure, it looked nice, but then they had to be taken down, and put away, and it just was not worth the energy I put into it. So instead, I always just enjoy other people's Christmas lights. Much easier that way.