116

116

Sunday. I’m still sleepy. The shortest day of the year and the start of winter. From now on, it’ll only get lighter!!
The kids are with the man celebrating “Sinterklaas” with his aunt. The original day for it was 2 weeks ago but since they are not going to be with her for Christmas, they are doing a 2 in 1 celebration kind of thing. I’m so glad I’m not there!! I had to do that for 15 years. The past 2 years were the hardest. I really didn’t want to be there, not that the previous 13 years I wanted to, but ok, at least there was some love between us.
For the ones who wonder what “Sinterklass” is, I’ll try to give a very short introduction/history.
Keep in mind that I’m totally against it, so you probably have to search for more info and see the other side of the coin.
“Sinterklaas” is short from Saint Nicholas. Saint Nicholas was a 4th-century Christian saint and Bishop of Myra. There are many miracles attributed to his intercession. He had a reputation for secret gift-giving. He’s also known as San Nicola di Bari (St. Nicholas of Bari).
Every year there are a lot of discussions about where he was from. It seems that the Italian stole his dead body and then claimed him as Italian. It’s also said that he could be from Greece or Turkey.
He is one of the sources of the popular Christmas icon of Santa Claus.

So “Sinterklaas” is celebrated on the night of December 5th in some countries and the idea is to give presents.
It’s said that he arrives by boat from Spain (no idea why) and that he has a white horse called Americo.

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He has some helpers called “Zwarte Pieten” (Black Pete’s)

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The part that really gets to my nerves is the Zwarte Pieten part. So racist that I want to cry.
The way they make them dress is a joke. And the black paint all over is a more horrible joke. Sometimes they say the Pieten were slaves. Other times it’s said that they got black because they came down the chimney… Really? So evenly spread?? And the clothes are clean??
For many years the Dutch say they are going to end with the tradition because some people don’t think it’s appropriated… But they never did or will…
Sorry, I can’t stand that tradition and celebrating that is painful for me.

So yesterday, before the man came to pick my kids, I said to them: “Let’s play a game. Each of you get to guess what your dad’s aunt is going to give you for Sinterklass. You get to name two options for each of you. The one who guesses 2 items, will get a prize from me”.
So I asked in turns what did they think each of them was going to get. Yes, I’m bored sometimes and this little game made as laugh for one hour.
The man’s aunt makes about 5 or 6 gifts for each (anything that she finds, she wraps and it’s a gift). Every year we all got one scarf or underwear or some pens and one bigger gift. My bigger gift was 80% of the times a nightgown or pajamas and the smaller gifts included many times little towels with Christmas prints, tea boxes, bubble bath soap (we didn’t have a bathtub then), and more original gifts.

This is the paper where I took notes. It’s written in Spanish but mostly you can see: scarves, socks, underwear, t-shirt, jeans, papers (the aunt collects all kind of coloring papers that she finds in magazines and supermarkets and then she gives them to my kids. The garbage container after her visits, is always FULL), markers (we begged her to stop doing it because my younger kids like to paint everything but she keeps doing it).

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The item that made as laugh for a very long time was: “a dog’s toy”. Some years ago, she got a dog’s toy for my 2nd son and we are laughing since. This time, my oldest son said that Cutie will be the one getting it.
Since I’m not there, I’m not getting any toilet deodorizer wrapped in Christmas paper… Thank goodness!!!

While I was written, my oldest son messaged me: “I want my PRIZE!!”. He guessed at least 2 of the gifts. I asked for a picture to prove it but he said they were about to have lunch and that he’ll do that later. I hope the man got on camera the moments where each of them was getting the presents. I bet they were happy seeing that they could get a prize from me!

Two more hours before it gets dark and I promised myself to get something done.
Have a nice Sunday!

~ by DotedOn on December 21, 2014.

13 Responses to “116”

  1. Reblogged this on Survivors Blog Here.

    Like

  2. Good read

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I want deodorizer in Christmas paper!!! πŸ˜€

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Oh wow, this Sinterklass thing is pretty creepy. Glad you dodged a bullet on the one! Happy Solstice to you, by the way. Forgot it was today.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Sinterklass!
    Entertaining read Paola…
    I’m loving your family more with each post!
    xxx

    Liked by 1 person

  6. So it’s the shortest day of the year in your world too! It’s already getting dark. Can we go to bed super early? I love knowing it will soon be Jan 1 and then the turning of the tide to SPRING. Happy shortest day of the year, Paola!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. That’s creepy!

    Like

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