Christmas traditions - What is your favourite Christmas tradition?

Published: Wednesday | December 11, 2013 Comments 0

Visit us on Facebook or tweet us. Use #ChristmasinJA. Here are some of the responses we have received so far:

The good old Jamaican Christmas carols, seeing families you hadn't seen in years, good cooking and togetherness.

- Antonette Patterson

I remember putting up the pepper lights on the grille of the veranda and at the window and door.

- Andrene Trensetta Myles

I remember when Christmas was all about love, fun and excitement. Christmas had meaning back then.

Hearing Christmas carols, the sounds of firecrackers and fire rockets being set off and children shouting. Feeling the cool Christmas breeze, feeling cheerful and loving. Tasting sorrel with ginger and rum, fruit/Christmas cake, homemade eggnog, Christmas breakfast and dinner. Smelling smoke from firecrackers, the jerk chicken pan in town at the grand parade, cake being baked and food being cooked.

- Jo Kerr

Grand Market. I had mixed feelings in going. I so much wanted to enjoy myself but was so scared of the Jonkanoo. The good vibe of people in harmony, special cleaning of the house, new this and new that. I remember acting as Mary in my school's Christmas play.

- Tanya Bolt

I remember Grandma's chocolate tea and fried dumplings.

- Levon Wheeler

I remember going shopping for Christmas gifts for Mario and Curtis on Christmas Eve, worried that I would not find the right gifts, after all that effort. Mario and Curtis did not buy my gift until about a week after.

- Ydae Magnifico

The Christmas tree lighting and the rest at Grand Market night.

- Tia Robinson

Spending Christmas on the beach.

- Marlon Tru Tuggie

My cousin and I would wake up at 4:30 a.m. and we would go Christmas carolling. It was so nice. We'd put on our sweaters and join the rest of the group. I was 13 and she was 16. To this day it is still my favourite memory.

- Sharon A. Hylton

I remember Jesus was the one who carried us through our poor life. Now my kids can give God thanks. They have it all through Christ who gives us strength.

- Sheron Anderson

I remember the events lasting through to the next day - Boxing Day. Our parents weren't afraid. Those days, children weren't spirited off. The only thing some of us feared were the firecrackers, star lights or the devil in the Jonkanoo parade. One thing I know is that when 'Jamdown' people celebrate, they don't play. Of course, if Christmas fell on a Saturday or Sunday the merriment and gaiety took place on Mondays. Church would have full pews. Choir members were ready to belt. Most important, though, are the friends with whom we shared those moments.

- Fleurette Edwards VanGulden

Rum cake, Grand Market, food, parties and family!

- Sharlene Scott

I remember my mom baking Christmas cake on a coal stove, fire on top and fire on bottom. Really nice! I remember family coming together and going to church on Christmas Sunday. Oh, and Jamaican Christmas music!

- Praying For All

Grand Market, food, new clothes, shopping for the house curtains, bed spreads etc. The first thing I say when I see a Jamaican is "wah gwaan!" I remember when I was young, on Christmas Eve my mother, little sister and I went to Kentucky Fried Chicken until it was after midnight - Christmas day. We would spend time together, and as long as I spent time with my mother or if we decided to go look for grandma, aunts, cousins and uncles I consider those as memories precious. I loved the family time.

- Redds Red Redds

I remember following my dad to buy a ram with heavy horns. I was delighted more in seeing the big horns than the meat inside. I wish I could be young again.

- Honest Man Pnp

I remember my mother waking up early to start cooking on Christmas Day. We'd wake up to a hearty breakfast. The beef round would be slow-cooking and the chicken stuffed. Mommy had to finish by noon so we could all pack up in the car and head to Clarendon where we brought a special Christmas meal for her uncle who lived alone. She was determined that he would never spend Christmas alone. We'd leave and then go home to our dinner, where the table would be set with our best finery, the meal displayed beautifully on the table and everybody dug in. Yum! We had sorrel, wine and apple cider for the kiddies, who would just be too excited to drink it from a wine glass and pretend they were drinking wine. Thanks, Mommy. You made Christmas.

- Joleen Jesseica

I remember painting the house, inside and outside. Also, baking Christmas cake, playing with star lights and drinking a lot of sorrel.

- Janette Palmer

I remember those wonderful Christmas days having Dad around. Grand Market night was always awesome. We came in at 3 a.m. and we had to get up for church at 10 a.m. We would have no food until after 12. Those days were the best days ever!

- Blanche McEwan

I remember Grand Market then carolling in the morning. We had the best breakfast of the year on Christmas morning. How can I forget the long feet, long hair doll that I kept combing the hair of and making clothes for over and over till Mama hid the needle, thread, and scissors. Ha!

- Thechange Letme

I remember getting a full bottle of aerated water each Christmas. My very own! Can you believe that? As a child, Christmas was the only time we were allowed to drink a full bottle. Even though my parents had a shop, that was the rule.

- Grace Asphall

I remember the sorrel wines and those awesome fruit cakes! Christmas is very nice in Jamaica.

- Nikki ForeverBless

I remember when people used to share. I remember helping with the baking and the family would get together. That was when Christ was the true meaning of Christmas. I believe this is slowly fading away.

- Amoy Swaby

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