Sharing Christmas Traditions

Nevenka Stefanovska
Nevenka Stefanovska
Studying for a Master's in Communication at Purdue University Calumet, Nevenka Stefanovska, is already underway with a career in marketing

Christmas is a time of sharing with others. Some people share gifts, some people share the good spirit, some people share food. However, international students have something very special to share – their culture.

Honouring the invitation from John Woods Elementary School, a group of Purdue Calumet international students set up small presentation tables for the school’s Christmas event.

It is wonderful celebrating the winter holidays in the USA – especially because there are month-long festivities.

Everyone celebrates in their own way, and regardless if they celebrate Christmas as a religious holiday or not, everyone is part of the holiday cheer.

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As guests at John Woods Christmas event, we all talked about the holidays in our country – Uzbekistan, Brazil, China, Taiwan, Romania, Saudi Arabia and Macedonia. The students were curious to hear about our cultures, see pictures of food and Christmas trees and, the most popular thing, have their name written in our native language.

To get the Christmas spirit flowing, there was a table with lines of Christmas treats such as ornamental cupcakes and colourful cookies.

The hardest job was choosing just one! In the spirit of gift-giving, there were several raffles with various gift baskets.

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And finally, no Christmas celebration would be complete without the arrival of Santa!

Even college students felt the need to hug Santa, but we had to wait for our turns just like all the children.

This event was a unique experience because I realized that although we have different names for our holidays, celebrate differently and even on different dates, we all celebrate the same thing: love, family and unity.

I may have not won any of the gift baskets I played for, but I returned home with something more important than gifts – lots of pictures and fond memories.

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And I can only wish to same to you! Make your Christmas a memorable experience. (And there is always next time for the gift baskets!)

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Happy memory making. Merry Christmas, and Happy New Year!

Cheerful smiles and holiday airplanes,

Nevenka

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