Showing posts with label Sweden. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Sweden. Show all posts

Holiday Cookie/Treat Swap Around the World -- a Multicultural Link Party

Christmas time always brings cookie swaps and I thought it would be fun to have a virtual one around the world. Cookies have many different names around the world like biscuits in England and Australia and galletas in Spain.  The idea of Christmas cookies probably started in the Middle Ages. The use of spices started in Europe during the Middle Ages. Cookies have probably evolved quite a bit since then, but think of some of the heavier spiced cookies like gingerbread that we associate with Christmas. (Sources: What's Cooking America and History Channel) To make this swap happen I asked my fellow Kid Blogger Network and Multicultural Kid Blogs members to join me. A few signed up and I am hoping you will join us as well!! Then I googled our favorite kind of Christmas cookies--thumbprints and discovered they are from Sweden!!

Multicultural Product Review -- Celebrate Christmas Around the World

Disclosure: I was sent these items to review free of charge from Multicultural Kid Blogs as part of the Multicultural Kids Product Promotion Services. All opinions in this post are my own. I did not receive any other compensation for this review.

Today I am going to review for you a wonderful Christmas product. It is a e-book/packet to learn about Christmas celebrations in other countries and is published by Multicultural Kid Blogs. It seems like the perfect time to share this with you since we just did our Christmas in Different Lands post yesterday. Plus Christmas is on Hazel's mind. She has been home sick much of this week but started to get bored and decided to play Mary.

Sharing Saturday 14-50

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This weekend was planning on I taking off with a girlfriend for a much needed mommies weekend away, but Hazel developed a fever, so plans postponed. However the party will still go on!! Thank you to everyone who shared with us last week!! This week's features are divided into Multicultural Holidays, Christmas and Winter and Stars. I went a little crazy with the number of features so I hope you enjoy them all!!

Multicultural Holidays

1) From Multicultural Kid Blogs: Hanukkah for Kids

2) From Dad's The Way I Like It: A Toddler's Christmas in Wales

3) From Planet Smarty Pants: Christmas Around the World -- Germany

4) From A Life in Balance: Swedish Christmas Braid

Christmas Features

1) From An Idea on Tuesday: Vegetable Printing Nativity

2) From Christianity Cove: Holiday Snack Idea: Jelly Bean Christmas Trees

3) From A Life in Balance: Easy Gingerbread House for Christmas

4) From Best Toys for Toddlers: No-Sew & No-Glue Paper Roll Christmas Elves

5) From Kandy Kreations: Christmas Shepherd 2 Nativity Advent Calendar Gift Idea Day 5

Winter and Star Features

1) From The Practical Mom: DIY Christmas Decoration: Star Lantern

2) From Sunshine and Hurricanes: Frozen Inspired Christmas Crafts

3) From Life with Moore Babies: Egg Carton Snowmen

4) From In the Playroom: Kid Made Star Display Inspired by How to Catch a Star

5) From Say Not Sweet Anne: Creamy 3 Ingredient Hot Cocoa

Thank you to everyone who shared last week!! I hope you will join us and share again!! If you are featured here, please feel free to grab a featured button to display proudly on your blog. 


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From Your Hostess:
This week we shared some simple nativity crafts, reviewed some books for traveling from home, shared the history of the Christmas tree and some customs and trees from around the world, and shared our persimmon exploration!

Now for This Week's Party 

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Easter Around the World Sweden

Have you entered my current giveaway yet?

Today we are continuing our exploration of Easter Celebrations around the world. We are stopping in Sweden. I think this is one of the most interesting stops of them all. It is the first time I have heard of witches connected to Easter.

Easter decoration
Lenten Twigs Source: By Jon Pallbo (
(Own work) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

 During Lent in Sweden, there are bread rolls filled with marzipan paste and cream called Lenten Buns and birch branches decorated with feathers called Lenten twigs. The twigs can be put in water and have new leaves come out to remind of the new life of spring and the sticks also remind of the beating of Jesus. The houses are prepared for Easter by using the colors yellow and pink. Daffodils and tulips are put in vases and many families will visit one another. 

Source: By Anders Lagerås (Own work) [CC-BY-SA-3.0], via Wikimedia Commons

As in many countries, Easter eggs are decorated. The old way to decorate them is to use onion peel, ears of corn or birch leaves in the pot of water with the eggs as they are boiled.  

Paskkarringar 1958, 2008
Witches from 1958 and 2008 Source: By Holger.Ellgaard,
eget fotomontage (self-made (2008), familjearkivet (1958)) [CC-BY-SA-3.0], via Wikimedia Commons

There is an old superstition in Sweden that on the evening before Good Friday the witches flew off on their broomsticks to meet the Devil. Some places say the witches always have a black cat and copper kettle on their broomsticks. As a result there are different traditions that go with this superstition. On the night before Easter, the young girls paint their faces and wear long skirts and are dressed as witches.  Some of the young boys dress up as well. They go to the streets and neighbors' houses carrying a coffepot or kettle and beg for money, candy and chocolates. Easter witches are a common decoration in Sweden. 

Bonfire to Keep Away the Witches Source: By Andthu (Own work) 
[CC-BY-3.0], via Wikimedia Commons

In some parts of Sweden they light off firecrackers to scare the witches away and some also light bonfires to keep them away. In the story we read, the older children/teenagers guarded the fire all night and then watched the sun rise on Easter morning.

Påskmiddag-Swedish Easter dinner
Easter Dinner Source: By Per Ola Wiberg [CC-BY-2.0], via Wikimedia Commons

On Saturday night or Easter morning the Swedish families have their Easter meal. Eggs are always part of the meal. There are eggs hidden--one for each child. The eggs are not real eggs, but colorful cardboard eggs filled with goodies.   

All of the information we found on Easter in Sweden came from the books above. We also enjoyed a story book about Easter in Sweden. It is Tekla's Easter by Lillian Budd.

In the story, Tekla and her family live on an island and get to go to church on Easter by boat. They have a small church on their island, but for the big holiday take a boat over to the mainland church. For Easter they dress in old fashion traditional clothes for church. She also makes witch decorations for an auction at her school and tells how the older kids get to stay up with the bonfires. Her older brother keeps setting off firecrackers and cannot wait to eat all the eggs he wants on Easter morning. It is a wonderful story and really helps get across some of the Easter traditions in Sweden.

 For more Multicultural and Easter Posts check out: