Thursday, December 23, 2010

Deck the halls with boughs of holly. . .

Ho ho ho! Christmas is a few days away and last night I had an epiphany!  What kind of an epiphany you may ask, well, it has to do with today's blog.

Last night I was checking out a blog that I didn't necessarily like too much, but I was more than a little curious when the blogger started talking about how her mom had this strange Christmas superstition to do with the pudding that they made for the special day.
So, I decided to do a little research on all the weird and wonderful X-mas traditions and superstitions of the world.
And boy, did I find some weird  ones. . . Check them out below:

1. This strange belief is practiced mainly in the homes of Great Britain, but who knows where else. While making the Christmas pudding, the ingredients have to be mixed in a clockwise direction, or you'll have bad luck for the new year!  


2. Tired of being single? In the Czech Republic on Christmas day all the single women of a household get together by the front door of the house and take off one of their shoes. They then throw that shoe out the front door. If the toe lands facing the door, it means that you'll get married within the year!   


3. This little old lady on a broom is not a lowly old witch, no, she is Italy's very own Le Befana. The Vatican, unable to prove the existence of Santa decided instead to tell children of a friendly witch who brought them presents. Good children would get gifts, sweets and fruit, but bad children would get coal, onions and garlic!   
 
4. In Latvia on Christmas day, there is a very peculiar custom called "Mumming". "Mummers" dress up in their costumes and masks, mainly consisting of bears, horses, goats and gypsies, and parade the streets with colour and music.  

5. If you thought that Santa's naughty list was the scariest thing to happen on Christmas, then you've never heard of Krampus Night. Krampus is Santa's evil twin, an Anti-Santa to say, whose job is to punish all the 'bad' children. On December 6th, men dress up in the scariest Krampus costume they can find and roam the streets looking for an unsuspecting walker by-er to scare out of their skin. This chilling tradition is performed mainly in Austria, but has spread to other countries such as Hungary, Bavaria and Slovenia. 

6. You''l never find a boring Christmas tree in the Ukraine with this interesting custom. It is said that if you find a spider web on the special day, that you will have good luck. I guess people thought that if you added spider webs to the tree decorations it might bump up that chance.


Anthea (P.S. Have an awesome X-Mas people!)

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Here comes the bride, all dressed in white. . .

People say that a person's best day is their wedding day, but I have a question: What about the bridesmaids in those scratchy, itchy dresses?

Ok, well to explain my blog today I think I'll start at the beginning;
Four months ago my future aunt asked me to be one of her bride's maids. Of course I said yes. Anyway, I figured that we would be wearing a dress that her mother designed - her mother happens to be one of these not famous, but well known Italian designers.

Three months pass and I still haven't heard or seen a twitch about this infamous dress. Unfortunately I happen to live in a different city, so I got all my input on the dress from my cousins, two other bridesmaids. The way they described it you would think that it was amazing, but, that picture slightly changed a week ago when my cousin came to deliver the masterpiece.
The dress was a light gold colour with a long train at the back. It had a slit across the leg and was a tad see-through.

Not to  bash the dress but, it looked hideous on. It was way too close to my skin tone and showed too much of my back for comfort. But before you think that this post is all about an itchy dress, read further.

Today my mom and I went shopping to find a different dress, to my absolute delight, thanks to the wonderful permission of my aunt to be. We went from shop to shop finding zilch, nada, squat. There were lots of nice ladies in these shops, all trying to sell us these luminescent sequined dresses that cost an arm and a leg.
Finally after an hour of searching we walked into a small boutique, well known for its insistent shop attendees, pretty simple dresses and large price tags. The second we took a step through the door they swooped down like vultures and began to use there sales mambo-jumbo on us. In under minutes I was in the changing room trying on a gold dress they had found for me. One of the assistants was pinning the bit that didn't completely fit right and while she did that another assistant was calling the seamster upstairs. How amazing is that?

Funny enough, I found my dress in that shop. It wasn't itchy, see-through, sequined or too revealing. The perfect dress for the wedding. Though the colour was gold, it wasn't too light. But I have to admit, the dress was a bit pricey. I'll probably be washing dishes for a month to pay it off,. Oh well. . .
 

Dresses resembling my original dress (Well, not exactly, or at all. Let's just leave it at "they're gold and I wasn't totally crazy about them" )

 
 Anthea