December is here and this year we will be celebrating Christmas here in Copenhagen, which we are pretty excited about because Christmas in Scandinavia is so cozy and special . We hope to share with you throughout the month many of the reasons why we love Christmas in Copenhagen and why we think it is an amazing time to visit, plus some ways you can incorporate some of Scandinavia’s Christmas spirit into your own celebration if a visit is not in your plans this year.
It is always fun to include new traditions during the holiday season and one of our very favorites since moving to Denmark has been celebrating a Scandinavian advent. With the days growing shorter and the darkness longer, lighting candles is a necessity for keeping the spirits high and we especially love how the Scandinavians incorporate the use of candles to make the holidays cozy and the count down to Christmas exciting and fun.
Around this time of year all of the shops are full of the standard four candle advent holder. Ours is an inexpensive version, dressed up with greenery and jingle bell garland, but there are countless options, both modern and traditional.
Each Sunday, starting on the first Sunday of December, a candle is lit to count down the weeks until Christmas. Many Danes attend a special Advent service to get the countdown started and our kids’ school even offered an optional Advent service (which was completely packed out) over the weekend, which was pretty amazing since we are so used to the separation of Church and State in the US.
Counting down the weeks until Christmas is pretty special, but we love how the Scandinavians also count down the days with candles that are meant to be burnt a little each day. Again, you won’t have trouble finding these candles if you are visiting because they are in most shops, but for an inexpensive version, pop into Søstrene Grenes to find one like ours.
What about you? Do you celebrate Advent? What is your favorite way to count down the days until Christmas?