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Wednesday, 6 January 2016

Burda Wednesday: October 1958, part IV

Hello everybody

Today, in the evening, we'll be having (finally!) our Christmas Eve! After all of you have already forgotten about it, and shed the "holiday ponds" off your tummies.. it's time for our folk to rejoice (due to having a different advent calendar). :)
Here's something interesting:
Decorated Christmas trees are not traditional in Serbia although, due to Western influences, they are becoming more common. Straw is placed throughout the home to signify Christ's humble birth.  In our area, straw is placed on the dining table, covered with cloths and then the white sheet is placed for the family to dine on. Walnuts and wheat are strewn in the four corners of the dining room, by the father of the family, with a prayer for health and prosperity.

More about it after the FIRST Burda post of this year! :)
Let's go:

The colors, they are so bright and friendly!

So... it's my Christmas tomorrow... yay!
No meat, dairy or eggs are consumed, continuing through Christmas Eve night - (we call it "badnje veče" over here). We go fat & meat free since sunrise till sundown (but, majority of us tend to stay away from the fat & meat until tomorrow).
.......tonight's dinner is packed with joy!
The meatless meal (depending on the family and the region) may consist of potatoes and cod fish, tuna salad, a layered bean and onion dish, meatless sarma (link will guide you to a Wiki page, basically it's ground meat wrapped in leave of sour cabbage), a rice-and-vegetable casserole, nuts in the shell, fresh and dried fruits, and cookies made without dairy and eggs.
It is a custom in our region that, after Christmas Eve dinner, groups of children go from house to house of their neighborhood and sing to neighbors. This custom is called "korinđanje" (I wrote about it before, it's much like your trick&treat). They knock on a neighbor's door or ring the doorbell; when the neighbor comes out they greet him, and ask if they are allowed to sing. If the answer is affirmative, they sing a children's songs. As a reward, the neighbor gives them candies or even money; more traditional gifts include walnuts, prunes, apples, and cakes
Ahhh, the joy of receiving that handful of treats.. to me, as a child in not-so-great times, it was making eye sparkle and making me sing even more joyfully.
For my post on Christmas traditions, feel free go click HERE.. 

I will great you with our customary: "Peace to you, the Christ is born!"
(answer being: "Truly, he is born!")  :)


  1. I hope you have a super Christmas! It's great reading about your traditions - I had no idea they were so very different.

    We've only had decorated trees in the UK for 200 years or so; it's a tradition we got from the Germans who married into the royal family (Queen Charlotte had the first recorded one in Britain). But they are pretty! I have some straw decorations for me tree, though I didn't put them on it this year. Do you scatter your straw loose, or is it tied in bundles?

    1. Hey Mim!
      I've seen a lot of Christmas documentaries, you have just reminded me that it is not an "ancient old" tradition for your people, too.
      Straw is a symbol. So, we just take a handful and scatter it under the tablecloth.. using more will make a bump, and therefore the eating would become.. troublesome. :)


  2. How fascinating that decorated Christmas trees have not, historically, been the norm in Serbia. Thank you for telling us about many of the traditions and foods that will fill your celebration, dear Marija. I hope that it is a truly joyful, relaxing, wonderfully lovely holiday for you.

    Merriest Christmas wishes!
    ♥ Jessica

    1. Thank you, Jessica.
      Yes, the history of the tree is quite the new one for us. Back n the day, the key feature in decoration was STRAW, and it had a multiple function: it was used to make lovely ornament (weaving it in shapes) and it was used to cover the floors, and add up to heat isolation of the houses. :)


  3. Merry Christmas! I've never heard of those Christmas traditions before. Very interesting.

    After all those black-and-white pages, that last page sure is a burst of color! That poor girl pictured at the chalkboard has such a tragic haircut and her sweater/jumper is so ill-fitting. Oh, and that blue embroidered tablecloth is lovely. And the sheets and pillow case are just magnificent.

    1. Hello Dawn.
      Thank you for your wish. :)
      ..and, yes, there's a whole lot of things happening in the images from Burda magazine... the more I look at them, to more I see.