Christmas in Lund

I stayed in Lund and celebrated Christmas with a friend of mine at my place. Preparing for the holidays things are a little bit different than they are in the US.

  1. Many stores in the US when it is not a holiday will stay open till about 8 or 9 pm, or even 10 pm that are not 24/7 stores. When the holidays start stores will stay open till midnight and open up earlier too, because apparently people need or should be able to go shopping that late… In Sweden, stores close by 4 or 5, maybe 6 pm normally and around Christmas they extend their shopping hours by 1 hour. Which is refreshing, because people should be able to spend time with their families.
  2. Everyone celebrates Christmas differently in the US, but my family always has a Christmas tree, and it has lots of ornaments that are all different shapes and colors. Since I wasn’t going to be going home for Christmas I wanted to bring a little Christmas spirit here. Finding a tree. Lund went from, there were no trees, to all of a sudden there were a lot of trees around Lund. It was great because I even got a student discount. I ended up getting a christmas tree stand from a 2nd hand shop as well as some blue ornaments. If you can, wait till just before Christmas to get decorating stuff because then it is marked down, which was good, especially on a student budget.
  3. Red is a Christmas color here. Obviously, it is in the States as well. But I was surprised that for the most part if you are buying ornaments they will only be red, silver or white, and gold. Finding ornaments in different colors is difficult. In the end I ended up using watered down regular craft glue, and glitter to make different colored ornaments. Turned out to be a fun little craft project.
  4. Decorations. Most people here will put up a star in their window made from paper that lights up, and they may have a tree, and you may see them put a couple strands of lights up on their balcony or what not. That is about it.

Other Swedish traditions around Christmas time:

  1. Christmas Market – Lund does have one, but it isn’t very big. If you really want to experience a Christmas Market in all it’s glory, you can find one in Copenhagen.
  2. If you have access to a TV, you should watch Donald Duck, everyone does this in Sweden.
  3. Glögg, I like glögg some of my classmates don’t. According to my Swedish friends, they make different types of every year.
  4. Pepparkakor: These are Sweden’s version of Ginger Snap cookies, that taste nothing like American Ginger Snap Cookies, but are just as good in their own way. These are delicious and you will find them everywhere. Typically they will be heart shaped. Christmas Tree 2015Pepparkakor
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