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Kjell Sherman
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Kjell Sherman   My Press Releases

Today's Luciafest in Sweden!

Published on 12/13/2018
For additional information  Click Here

I'm of Swedish heritage, and as we move into the heart of our celebratory season, I thought I'd share a few of our Christmas traditions.

Swedes have four distinct days to celebrate:

  • Luciadagen, or the coming of light, on 13 Dec, is our signature holiday image to the world:

  • Julafton, or Christmas Eve, on 24 Dec, is when gifts are exchanged.
  • Juldagen, or Christmas Day, on 25 Dec, is when julotta -- morning services -- are held.
  • Tjugondag Knut, or Knut's Day, on 12 Jan ... Trust me, this one's best understood after a few rounds of glögg -- hot spiced wine -- but it's basically become the end of the Christmas season, when the decorated trees are taken down.

The term smör means butter; smörgås is an open-faced sandwich. The term bord means table, so a smörgåsbord is a Swedish buffet.

Swedish smorgasbord
A common dish -- especially on a julbord, or Christmas buffet -- is potatiskorv, which is a spiced pork-and-potato sausage and is a staple on the Christmas table along with sill -- pickled herring -- served on knäckebröd, which North Americans might equate to Rye-Krisp.

Virtually every household has a pan of glögg on the stove, ready to be served the instant visitors arrive -- usually carrying a small gift, such as a flower -- to share the holiday spirit.

And don't forget to carmelize it. That's half the fun:

Daylight lasts four hours or less in most of the country, so walkways are lined with small lit candles to guide everyone safely to the door, after which a good time is then had by all!

Jag önskar dig en god jul och ett gott nytt år!

Or, in English: I wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

Swedish elves


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