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Six of the Best Unusual Christmas Traditions by umsymums38

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Six of the Best: Unusual Christmas Traditions

Fermented auks, horse skulls and setting the table for ghosts... just a few unusual Christmas customs from around the world. If your children think their family's weird for standing up for the Queen's speech, get them to take a look at these traditions. It might make them look at their nearest and dearest in a whole new light!

Yugoslavia
On the second Sunday before Christmas, children creep in and tie their mother's feet to a chair, shouting 'Mother's Day, Mother's Day, what will you pay to get away?' Surprisingly, she then gives them presents. Children play the same trick on their father the following week and the children get more presents. Unfortunately, parents don't get to do the same to their children the week after.

Greenland
Kiviak is a gastronomical Christmas treat from Greenland which, for some reason, hasn't been adopted by many other nations. It's made from the raw flesh of an auk which has been buried under a stone in sealskin for several months until it's achieved an advanced stage of decomposition. Apparently, it smells like old blue cheese and tastes very pungent.

Iraq
In the Christian homes, a child reads the story of the Nativity from an Arabic Bible while other family members hold lighted candles. As soon as the story has been read a bonfire made of dried thorns is lit and the family sing a psalm. If the thorns burn to ashes, the family will have good fortune during the coming year. When the fire has burned down, everyone jumps over the ashes three times and makes a wish.

Wales
Ever wondered where the phrase 'putting the bite on' comes from? At Christmastime, in some rural areas of south Wales, the Mari Llwyd is a person hiding under a horsehair sheet (a brethyn rhawn) whilst carrying a horse's skull on a pike .The Mari Llwyd wanders the streets with a band of mummers and anyone 'given the bite' by the horse's jaws must pay a cash fine.

Lebanon
The Labanese plant chickpeas, wheat grains, beans and lentils in cotton wool, a fortnight before Christmas. They water the seeds every day and at Christmas, the sprouted shoots are used to surround the manger in nativity scenes.

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Portugal
In Portugal, the 'consoda' feast takes place on the morning of Christmas Day. Extra places are set at table for the souls of the dead and they are offered food to these souls to bring luck to the family during the forthcoming year.

1. Match the words from the text with their translations. Połącz wyrazy z tekstu z ich tłumaczeniami

auk skull set the table weird creep surprisingly treat raw flesh bury sealskin achieve decomposition apparently pungent Nativity thorn burn to ashes rural horsehair pike mummers jaws fine plant chickpeas wheat grains lentil fortnight sprouted shoots manger forthcoming year

surowe mięso ostry, pikantny dziwny 2 tygodnie pika, włócznia focze futro spalic się na popiół rozkład alka (ptak) szczęki cierń soczewica końskie włosie nakryć do stołu przebierańcy sadzić o dziwo najwyrażniej, najwidoczniej żłóbek czaszka ziarna pszenicy wiejski smakołyk Nadchodzący rok wypuszczone kiełki pochować, zakopać grzywna narodzenie skradać się cieciorka osiągnąć

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2. In which country…/ W którym kraju… 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. do people disguise as horses? do people wait for their ancestors at a Christmas table? do children get presents for playing a trick on a member of a family? do people eat dead birds at Christmas? do people use grains as Christmas decorations? do people light a bonfire?

3. Match the vocabulary words on the left with the definitions on the right. Dopasuj słówka do ich definicji.
a) a traditional Christmas drink made of beaten eggs, milk or cream, and sugar.

1. mistletoe

2. eggnog 3. wreath

b) a hollow, vertical structure of masonry, which allows smoke and gases to escape from a furnace, fireplace, or stove; flue.

c) an indoor recess in a chimney, in which fires can be made; hearth.

4. fireplace

d) any of several related large deer found in the colder regions of Europe, Asia, and Greenland, both sexes of which have branching antlers. Thought to pull Santa's sleigh.

5. sleigh 6. garland

e) something serving to beautify; embellishment; ornament.

f) a light horse-drawn cart on runners that is used to carry people over snow and ice.

7. chimney

g) in folklore, a fat, bearded old man in a red suit who lives at the North Pole and brings children presents at Christmas; St. Nicholas; St. Nick; Kriss Kringle.

8. tinsel 9. Santa Claus

h) a circular band, usu. of flowers or foliage woven or twisted together, used as a symbol or decoration.

i) something given as a gift.

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10. advent

j) a parasitic plant, species of which are found in Europe, Asia, and North America, having evergreen leaves and bearing white berries and small, yellow flowers. Often used as a Christmas decoration.

11. reindeer

k) the arrival or coming to exist, esp. of something important.

12. present

l) a glittering material with a metallic appearance that is produced in strips, sheets, or the like and used for its decorative effect, esp. at Christmas.

13. decoration

m) a wreath, chain, or string made to be worn for celebration or decoration, esp. one made of flowers, leaves, vines, or the like.

4. Use the words from work bank to complete the text. Użyj słów z ramki aby uzupełnić tekst,

Work Bank 354 baptism of January Church the birth In traditional word the old of not

The ____________ Christmas comes from the old English "Cristes maesse" meaning Christ's ____________ The Holiday celebrates the birth ____________ Jesus Christ. The actual birthday of Jesus is ____________ known; therefore, the early ____________ Fathers in the 4th century fixed the day around the ____________ Roman Saturnalia festival (17 - 21 December), a ____________ pagan festivity. The first mention of the birthday of Jesus is from the year ____________ AD. Gradually all Christian churches, except Armenians who celebrate Christmas on ____________ 6 (the date of the ____________ of Jesus). ____________ American/English tradition, Christmas Day itself is the day for opening gifts brought by jolly old St. Nick. Many ____________ ____________ current American ideals about the way Christmas ought to be, derive from the English Victorian Christmas, such as that described in Charles Dickens' "A Christmas Carol." The caroling, ____________ gifts, the feast, and the wishing of good cheer to all - these ingredients came together to create that special Christmas atmosphere.

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5. Complete the crossword puzzle. Uzupełnij krzyżówkę.
1 2

3 5 7 6

4

8

9

10

11

l
12 13

ACROSS 1. used to decorate a Christmas tree 3. __________ Christmas! 7. Santa's little helpers 8. vehicle used by Santa 9. where Santa lives 10. Christmas songs 12. well-known snowman 13. left for Santa

DOWN 2. the red-nosed reindeer 3. at Christmas people kiss under this plant 4. Santa uses this to enter homes 5. 26th December 6. traditional Christmas drink 11. we put it at the top of the tree

MERRY CHRISTMAS!

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KEY 1. auk skull set the table weird creep surprisingly treat raw flesh bury sealskin achieve decomposition apparently pungent Nativity thorn burn to ashes rural horsehair pike mummers jaws fine plant chickpeas wheat grains lentil fortnight sprouted shoots manger forthcoming year 2. 1. Wales, 2. Portugal, 3. Yugoslavia, 4. Greenland, 5. Lebanon, 6. Iraq 3. 1 j, 2 a, 3 h, 4 c, 5 f, 6 m, 7 b, 8 e,9 g, 10 k, 11 d, 12 i, 13 l

alka (ptak) czaszka nakryć do stołu dziwny skradać się o dziwo smakołyk surowe mięso pochować, zakopać focze futro osiągnąć rozkład najwyrażniej, najwidoczniej ostry, pikantny narodzenie cierń spalic się na popiół wiejski końskie włosie pika, włócznia przebierańcy szczęki grzywna sadzić cieciorka ziarna pszenicy soczewica 2 tygodnie wypuszczone kiełki żłóbek Nadchodzący rok

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4. 1. word, 2. birth, 3 of, 4 not, 5 Church, 6 old, 7 traditional, 8 354, 9 January, 10 baptism, 11 in, 12 of, 13 the, 14 the 5.
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3m

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7e

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8s

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10c 11a

13m

i

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i s t l e t o e
12f

o x i i l g s d a y h
9n

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g g n o g

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