Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Doing Things Differently

Obviously things are done differently in different countries because of preference, culture, tradition, etc. In the past month or so, we have experienced some of the differences for the first time, or been reminded of them. There was an minor earthquake here in mid December. In the states, I believe it is common during drills or actual quakes to get under doorways, or desks or similar. Here everybody tries to get outside and out from under balconies because the ceilings are concrete and you really don't want that coming down on you.
In this region a decorated evergreen is really more for New Year's, just like Santa, and the tree involved in Orthodox Christmas celebration is a branch cut from an oak tree, retaining it's withered brown leaves. We saw several people selling these on Christmas Eve (January 6th). People display these (undecorated) outside the entrance to their homes, some even fasten small ones to the grill or mirror of their car. Then late that night the tradition is to take them to the church where they are burned in a bonfire. I believe it has something to do with protection from evil throughout the year. We did notice that some people just toss theirs in the trash though.
Fireworks and crackers are set of starting in the beginning of December and are especially prevelent at midnight or December 31st, January 6th and January 13th(the 14th is Orthodox New Year). Hopefully they are all done now for awhile. On the plus side they taught Esther a new word' "bang!"
They don't really do "toddler beds" here either. You graduate from a crib to a twin bed with no rails. I believe they stay in the crib for awhile. We choose to use crib mattresses on the floor so that if the girls do roll out, the don't have far to go. We surround the wall with foam puzzle pieces to keep them from bumping their heads on it.

1 comment:

Melissa said...

Aw, that picture is so cute! We never did toddler beds, either; we just put twin mattresses on the floor. Then when they stopped falling out of bed, we put the mattresses on frames or in bunk beds.