• swarbrickconnie

Danish Canadian Museum Advent Calendar December 22nd

Christmas Traditions that create some wonderful memories.

The smallest of traditions can create the biggest of impacts!! Games and get togethers always create fond memories and a healthy happy good time.

Julefrokost: a must-go Christmas lunch

Some weeks before Christmas, every person in Denmark receives an email with an invitation to the year’s Julefrokost, which translates to Christmas Lunch. This invitation can be from friends, relatives, or colleagues. Most Danes love this tradition and make sure to never miss it. Plus, in some cases, refusing to attend Julefrokost is considered impolite. It should be noted that this tradition is also popular in Sweden and other Scandinavian countries.

Roll a six with a dice and get an extra present

Pakkeleg is a quite famous Christmas game and is usually played among family members at Christmas dinner or at the work’s Julefrokost. The main rule is that everyone has to bring a small and cheap gift that will be placed along with the rest in the middle of the table. The rest is based on luck. Each participant has a dice and whoever rolls a six can take a present from the pile. When all the presents are “distributed” the game continues for five minutes, only this time whenever someone rolls a 6, they can take another participant’s gift. After these last five minutes, some will leave empty handed while others will leave with their bag full of goodies.


I have recently read the book “the art of making memories.” By Mike Meik’s

Perhaps that’s the reason for this weeks Advent Calendar. I found the idea of actively practicing the “Art of creating memories.” to be a life practice valuable enough to add to my life.

There are many things that trigger memories, smell, sounds, taste, pictures, touch. All of our senses can trigger a memory. To myself I naturally went to Christmas, every sense is triggered at Christmas, the smells of trees, wood burning, Glogg on the stove, baking in the oven. The songs, a song by Alabama “Thistle hair the Christmas Bear”, brings me back to when I was 10 years old every time the first time I heard the song. The feeling of a soft fuzzy pj (with feet) brings me back to my earliest Christmas when mom made us onsies with slippers (that were slippery) for Christmas. A big Silver mix bowl! I mean BIG, we didn’t have stockings mom didn’t like the idea of shoes or dirty socks to put something you eat in. So we would create a big square in the living with four chairs back to back and big metal bowls (mom was a baker and ran a catering company as well) on them!! I remember the first year we came up with it!! I was Sooooo excited that Santa would fill that bowl! Holy smokes! I remember the first and ONLY time my mother wrapped gifts under the tree, I was 7, yeah the presents were to much for my sister and I to wait! We snuck them open and tried to close them, we were busted. She never did it again.

The strongest memories are the ones that were something new, and the ones I’ve repeated every year those have become our family traditions.

The food! Food is a ultimate trigger, the taste of certain cuisine will take me back in a instant. This is something I strive for in the Museum cafe, if I can trigger a memory I’ve successfully completed a dish. Or if it’s a new creation and someone comes back repeatedly to have that meal and we’ve created that memory is always a huge success.

Struggling creates memories, we as humans always want to win, or things to be easy, yet in my life I don’t remember the wins unless it was long hard fought win. We remember what we have work for. Not what’s just easy, I’m curious if that’s why some of our people have so much unhappiness now. If happiness is a memory and we need specific circumstances or situations, experience to create them, easy will never create happiness. Celebrating hard won will, as well as the abilities to appreciate every aspect of the journey. Interestingly enough that is my definition of “Hygge”. "actively celebrating and appreciating the simplest of activities that so you feel safe and content." I know that this is my definition of this word I have come across many and people who just feel it with no words. This is just one that I am sharing.

New memories are things I change, new experiences, appreciated items or action. The more of the impact on yourself and others the stronger the memory, If you have just survived a accident or completed a monumental task that seemed impossible those memories last. Just like the day I said good bye to my father, that day has never left me. Just like all of my favorite memories and Christmas's with him I still have, he loved Christmas and shared that love with me.


a sentimental longing or wistful affection for the past, typically for a period or place with happy personal associations.

Nostalgia brings one back to moments that have been created in ones mind, it’s the stronghold that keeps people grounded, safe in light, love and joy.

Happy memories are essential to our mental health. They strengthen our identity, sense of purpose and relationships.


This is why I have chosen this often over looked little story, It's all about the qualities of a wonderful full life and the memories.

The Old street lamp was written in a Christmas book dedicated to Charles Dickens from Hans Christian Andersen. Hans and Dicken's were very good friends for many many years. The stories Hans complied in the Christmas book dedicated to Dicken's are all interestingly about life qualities, this story is about a quality life, and the how beautiful memories are and how they can inspire and comfort people.

Old street lamp" by Hans Christian Andersen is definitely worth reading, it contains a lot of kindness, love and chastity, which is useful for raising a young individual.


Have you heard the story about the old street lamp? It is not so very amusing, but one may very well hear it once. It was such a decent old street-lamp, that had done its duty for many, many years, but now it was to be condemned. It was the last evening,—it sat there on the post and lighted the street; and it was in just such a humor as an old figurante in a ballet, who dances for the last evening, and knows that she is to be put on the shelf to-morrow. The lamp had such a fear of the coming day, for it knew that it should then be carried to the town-hall for the first time, and examined by the authorities of the city, who should decide if it could be used or not. It would then be determined whether it should be sent out to one of the suburbs, or in to the country to a manufactory; perhaps it would be sent direct to the iron founder's and be re-cast; in that case it could certainly be all sorts of things: but it pained it not to know whether it would then retain the remembrance of its having been a street-lamp.

However it might be, whether it went into the country or not, it would be separated from the watchman and his wife, whom it regarded as its family. It became a street-lamp when he became watchman. His wife was a very fine woman at that time; it was only in the evening when she went past the lamp that she looked at it, but never in the daytime. Now, on the contrary, of late years, as they had all three grown old,—the watchman, his wife, and the lamp,—the wife had always attended to it, polished it up, and put oil in it. They were honest folks that married couple, they had not cheated the lamp of a single drop. It was its last evening in the street, and to-morrow it was to be taken to the town-hall; these were two dark thoughts in the lamp, and so one can know how it burnt. But other thoughts also passed through it; there was so much it had seen, so much it had a desire for, perhaps just as much as the whole of the city authorities; but it didn't say so, for it was a well-behaved old lamp—it would not insult any one, least of all its superiors. It remembered so much, and now and then the flames within it blazed up,—it was as if it had a feeling of—yes, they will also remember me! There was now that handsome young man—but that is many years since,—he came with a letter, it was on rose-colored paper; so fine—so fine! and with a gilt edge; it was so neatly written, it was a lady's hand; he read it twice, and he kissed it, and he looked up to me with his two bright eyes—they said, "I am the happiest of men!" Yes, only he and I knew what stood in that first letter from his beloved.

I also remember two other eyes—it is strange how one's thoughts fly about!—there was a grand funeral here in the street, the beautiful young wife lay in the coffin on the velvet-covered funeral car; there were so many flowers and wreaths, there were so many torches burning, that I was quite forgotten—out of sight; the whole footpath was filled with persons; they all followed in the procession; but when the torches were out of sight, and I looked about, there stood one who leaned against my post and wept. I shall never forget those two sorrowful eyes that looked into me. Thus there passed many thoughts through the old street-lamp, which this evening burnt for the last time. The sentinel who is relieved from his post knows his successor, and can say a few words to him, but the lamp knew not its successor; and yet it could have given him a hint about rain and drizzle, and how far the moon shone on the footpath, and from what corner the wind blew.

Now, there stood three on the kerb-s