BH is a revert of 20+ years and his mother and sister and aunt et al remain Methodists. So for at least 18 of the 20 years which we have been married, we have spent Christmas day with his mother et al. BH’s mother hosted for more than a decade of those 2 decades, Christmas lunch for 18-25 of her relatives. And cooking was ‘job’ work for her, so at some point we took over the setting up, the decorating, and some of the cooking.
Growing up in Trinidad, you will find that Trinis celebrate everything as lives and people intertwine and mingle. So you will find everyone donning a sari or Indian garb for Divali, everyone making pastelles and fruitcake (with or without alcohol) for Christmas, everyone eating sawine for Eid. For years, we had a Christmas tree for the holidays, and exchanged gifts. For many many years, Elder Brother’s mother and her family hosted a luncheon on Christmas Day. In addition to Eid time, we spring cleaned for Christmas and curtains were changed. We went to the malls so that my mother could see the decorations and the christmas trees. I played violin most at that time of year. We knew most of the christmas carols. So seguing to Christmas in Bim with our non-Muslim relatives did not take much of a stretch.
I love the colours, the decor, the scents, the camaraderie of the Christmas season. But I love Eid too. And I loved it even when we didn’t exchange gifts per se, we didn’t decorate our homes other than to put up new curtains and new linens. The scents and the camaraderie were there, the fellowship. As were the invitations to partake of our goodies and participate in our celebrations.
The featured pic is sugar cookies, cream cheese tarts with cranberry and mango jam, and mint hershey kisses. The J*Y cookies will translate to JOY for the next Eid.