On Holiday Traditions and Celebrations

December has always been a big thing for Filipinos (or anyone, in general, actually). In fact, it’s such a huge celebration, that Filipinos start putting up decors and start countdowns as soon as September 1 hits the calendar. Roughly four months of preparations, and gajillion reminders every single day about the upcoming holidays, I doubt it that you’ll miss the memo to have that Christmas spirit.

However, for our family, we never really follow the ‘memo’. Ever since my dad started following the teachings of Dating Daan, and as my brother and I grew up, we gradually let go of the Christmas decors, or the songs, or the lanterns. We still have our small tree, but we never got the chance to put it up anymore, as my dad would tell us that it’s just another mess to take care off as soon as the holidays are over. We occasionally give gifts to each other, depending on our financial status, but mostly we skip that too and just eat out or go somewhere. Traditions has long been forgotten, and we would only cook food for the sake of having something to serve to our guests come the 25th. My grandmother lives with us, so every Christmas and New Year, a flock of my cousins would go to our place and visit her briefly. I’m never really close with them as I don’t have anyone near my age (they all have their own families, etc.) and the things that interests me sounds kind of strange to them. I’d usually end up saying hello to them, and then retreating back to my own little world, interacting with strangers and some friends online.

It sounds like my holidays suck — sure, a little bit — but I guess I’m quite used to it. I’m not really bitter, but I do hope that we could’ve celebrated it in a happier manner than how we usually do now. I mean, I love my family and I totally understand why circumstances go that way, but sometimes, I do miss waiting for 12 midnight and opening small presents on Christmas eve. Nowadays, we would end up sleeping it off, with me, wasting my time on the internet as they slumber off in bed. I would love to have a quick glass of wine or a bottle of beer, but my parents aren’t really familiar with my drinking habits (oops), so in turn, I’ll just lie in bed and idly read through blogs or like Instagram posts of other families, smiling proudly with their new clothes on Christmas eve.

New Years is pretty much the same, except that we kind of celebrate it and wait for 12 midnight, since we kinda don’t have any choice. We’re not a fan of firecrackers, so we’d usually end up buying a couple of sparklers and light it up. But nowadays, we’ve also let that go, and we’d usually end up standing on the sidelines, watching our neighbors fire it up.

I really don’t know how we ended up this way. I guess I only feel a bit sad because we used to do all these Christmas-y things, and that the holidays are something that I’d look forward to as a kid, and now, it’s just another day. Just another day with extra food and extra visitors. As much as I want to feel unaffected by all the changes (this is nothing new, we’ve been like this since I was in college, I guess), I would always end up wishing that the holidays would be something more exciting for me, or that we have small traditions that we’d still keep even if we’re already old. I’d usually tell Mark about how I wanted things to go, and I honestly hope that if I would start my own family, I would start traditions and keep it as it is even if they grow old or even if they even have their own families.

I don’t know why I’m actually writing this up as this doesn’t really feel like it belongs on as a part of my ‘niche’. I feel like I just needed to let this go and write like how I used to on the blog — unfiltered shit, screaming rants, and random babbles.

Oh well. How about you guys? How do you celebrate the holidays? 🙂
PS: Usual round up post for 2015 coming up tomorrow! Yas!

4 thoughts on “On Holiday Traditions and Celebrations

  1. My family’s really big on Christmas and New Year celebrations since it’s one of those few times my papa and other family members are at home. Our tree’s already up on September. Gift giving are expected, along with the massive amount of food. We also have firecrackers in time for New Year’s. It’s one of those traditions we have that I’m positive I will carry on if I have my own family. Something I look forward to every year and I can’t imagine not doing it. If these are something you’d want to try for the holidays, I hope you get to do it next year, or well, this year na pala! If even just a part of it. Happy 2016, Jhanz!! 🙂

    Love, Richel. | Richel Goes Places

  2. My family and I, although we are Filipino, we don’t really celebrate Christmas in a traditional Filipino way because my parents are always busy at work. Typically, it’s a family dinner but not quite fully Filipino or fully American. It’s like a mix.

    I would LOVE to celebrate Christmas the Filipino way because it’s so fun and festive. Maybe someday?

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