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CHRISTMAS CELEBRATIONS AROUND THE WORLD


As Americans, we pride ourselves in "doing Christmas up right." Tons of gifts, big holiday feasts, huge trees, Lights on the houses. USA!

Here are some of the other ways people prepare for the celebration of Christmas.


* In Italy they have no Christmas trees, instead they decorate small wooden pyramids with fruit.


* In Caracas, the capital city of Venezuela, it is customary for the streets to be blocked off on Christmas Eve so that the people can roller-skate to church.


* An artificial spider and web are often included in the decorations on Ukrainian Christmas trees. A spider web found on Christmas morning is believed to bring good luck.


* It is a British Christmas tradition that a wish made while mixing the Christmas pudding will come true only if the ingredients are stirred in a clockwise direction.


* Sending red Christmas cards to anyone in Japan constitutes bad etiquette, since funeral notices there are customarily printed in red.


* In Yugoslavia, on the 2nd Sunday before Christmas, children creep in and tie their mother’s feet to a chair, shouting ’Mother’s Day, Mother’s Day, what will you pay to get away?’ She then gives them presents. Children play the same trick on their father the following week and get more presents.


* A new holiday trend is literally turning a traditional Christmas celebration upside down. Hammacher Schlemmer, a retail company based in New York, recently offered a unique yuletide decoration: the Upside-Down Christmas Tree. Standing at 7-feet tall and pre-lit with over 800 commercial grade lights, this technological marvel can be yours for the low price of $599.95. But why would anyone want an upside-down Christmas tree? According to Hammacher Schlemmer’s website: "The inverted shape makes it easier to see ornaments, which hang away from the dense needles," while "allowing more room for the accumulation of presents underneath."

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