As Christmas draws nearer, locals spend the week finalizing preparations for a fun-filled weekend! Families will travel across the country to be with loved ones and visit the stores to complete their last-minute shopping to fill the gaps under the Christmas tree. This time of the year truly embodies tradition and family in communities. Here are a few ways how the locals spend their Christmas Eve:
The Big Makeover!
Christmas time is when households undergo a thorough cleaning. New linoleum flooring, locally known as marley, is laid on the floors throughout the house. The house’s walls, sometimes inside and out, are coated with new paint colors, while new curtains hang over each room’s windows. The house is to look prim to host a belly full of laughter, music, and spirited family members!
A Busy Kitchen.
Enter into the warm aroma of the preparation of home-cooked meals! In Belize, the menu rarely ever changes for Christmas day. Whether it’s mommy, granny (grandma), or a team of family members cooking, the classic Belizean turkey dinner will be in the making. From the glistening glaze of the ham, the warm smell of coconut rice and beans, or the delectable potato salad, folks anticipate feasting along with a glass of lemonade and on a plate or two of the turkey dinner. And of course, there must be dessert, be it white or black fruit cake!
Singing Christmas Carols.
Choirs assemble, ready to traverse the neighborhood to spread Christmas cheer! Going from door to door, they sing songs to fill the hearts of listeners. Sometimes, choirs would take the Christmas spirit to hospital shut-ins or elderly homes. With their melodic voices and instruments, like the tambourine, locals look forward to being entertained and singing along with carolers!
Celebrating the Birth of Jesus.
After cleaning up, shopping, and cooking, some families get ready to bring in the Christmas at church at the annual midnight mass. Dressed in the best of their wardrobe, it’s a night of taking photos to share with extended family and friends on a Christmas card. Being at church on Christmas Eve may even come with a glance at nearby fireworks when the clock strikes 12. It is a must for families to remember the reason for the season.
When visiting Belize for Christmas, you will surely be immersed in culture and celebration when you mingle with locals. We wish you and your family a Merry Christmas from your favorite tropical oasis, Belize!