13th Day: Santa Lucia

  On the 13th day we partook in a Scandinavian celebration . . . that revolves around an Italian.  A bunch of Scandinavians celebrating an Italian woman?  Obviously, I’m all kinds of into this!

It’s also the festival of lights, which is perfect seeing as it was also our Christmas at my dad’s.  It’s perfect because my dad collects old fashioned oil lamps- so it’s always quite a celebration of lights there.
Just a small portion of his collection of antiques

We arrived early in the morning and stayed for the majority of the day.  The kids were spoiled beyond belief and had a great time with their nano.

Nano & the kiddos
Christmas 2015


Finding Marshall’s presents under the tree


Excited with unwrapping new treasures


He was so grateful and excited over each gift


Marshall received his first RC car- and it even has a 5th wheel for wheelies


Old fashion cowboy shooting range


Playing the robotic rock ’em sock ’em robots gift
Nano was excited because he had the original rock ’em sock ’ems and loved sharing in the experience with his grandson
Marshall really loved the hovering targets game too
(really, he loved all of the gifts and was incredibly spoiled with even more than what’s pictured)


The kids even have stockings at nano’s


Violet most enjoyed showing off her cute dress & cap that nano got for her months ago and talking silly with him


  After all the fun of new presents and wonderful food, it was time for us to go home.  Once home we promptly started working on doing a small Saint Lucia day celebration.
  Saint Lucia day is a Scandinavian holiday celebrating Saint Lucia, a saint hailing from Sicily.  It is their way of celebrating the [old] solstice and bringing light into the dark days.  Traditionally, the oldest daughter of the house wears an all white dress/ robe with a red sash and a wreath of candles upon her head.
We didn’t have a white dress or robe in her size so we went with a cute white shirt and pants.
She made sure to pose with “prayer hands” for the occasion.
  Boys wear silver cone hats and have wands with stars that they wave about.  They’re referred to as “star boys”.
Our little Star Boy


Our very enthusiastic Star Boy
  It is also customary for the children to prepare breakfast in bed for the parents.  Um, obviously this will be my favorite holiday going forward!
  To celebrate, we made Violet a crown out of a headband and paper candles- something about real flames on my infant’s head just didn’t seem right.  Then we made Marshall’s ‘star boy’ attire with a simple rolled sheet of taped scrapbook paper and a cute out star and pencil.
  It was finally time for Vi to lead our family in the procession of light and celebration.
She does a pretty good job of walking when holding onto her dad’s hands- she has the motion down, now just needs to get the balance!


Saint Lucia Day 2015
(Violet wanted to keep walking forward)


  With these short days and long night, a celebration of light was very welcome.  The kids enjoyed having their own little parade of light and before we knew it, it was time for their bedtime.  Brad and I stopped by a local pizza joint, in my home town, to get a lingonberry take and bake pizza for a late night treat at home after the kids went to bed.  Ya know, for Saint Lucia and all. (An Italian & Scandinavian mashup holiday)

It shouldn’t work but it SO does
Asiago, parmesan, and provolone cheeses with grilled cajun chicken, lingonberry sauce, red onion, and oregano
(The “lucky chicken” at Rafferties)


  The thirteenth day was a celebration of light all the way around.  The light of family and love that emanates from it, as well as the light of Scandivian tradition in dark nights.  It was nice to have our littlest Dingman lead the way for us all and I hope this is just the beginning of her journey as a leader of love and light.  Happy Saint Lucia day, friends.

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