Thursday, 24 December 2020

A Coronavirus Christmas

It was only because I heard a Christmas song on the radio that I realised that Christmas is coming up! In the predominantly Jewish city where I live there is very little sign of the holiday. Instead we have been celebrating Chanukah, the eight day holiday which began on 10th December and is also known as the Festival of Lights. It commemorates the re-dedication of the second century BCE Second Temple in Jerusalem. You can read more about the holiday in this post.
Needless to say, this year has been like no other. We lit the Chanukah candles every night and I made latkes and doughnuts (we eat potato pancakes, latkes, and deep-fried doughnuts, sufganiot, to remind us of the miracle of the oil and the candles that burned for eight days in the rededicated Holy Temple) but other than that, Covid-19 restrictions meant that that there were no parties and no get togethers with friends. We will party twice as hard next year!
Christmas trees at the Church of the Visitation, Ein Kerem, 2013.
Despite the fact that I celebrate Chanukah instead of Christmas, I do enjoy listening to Christmas pop songs on Radio 2 on the Internet. I am quite well versed in all my carols too! I like to have a good singalong and usually no one is home. This year my husband, who is working from home, and youngest son have had to put up with my squawking!!!
Of course Christmas is especially meaningful in Israel due to the historic significance this little country holds as the land where the Christmas story took place. As far as I know, celebrations have pretty much been called off this year but, in normal times, the Christmas Market and Midnight Mass in the Church of the Annunciation in Nazareth is known to be a wonderful experience. In Bethlehem you can visit Manger Square and go to Christmas Eve Midnight Mass at the Church of the Nativity, plus there is an annual Christmas Parade. The German Colony in Haifa, which we were lucky enough to visit in 2018, has amazing Christmas lights. 
I have not been out and about to see any Christmas trees or lights this year, so I am sharing my photos from previous years. I hope you will enjoy them once again.
Christmas trees at the YMCA in Jerusalem, 2016.
I do have a papercut art business and this year I created a new Christmas card to send to a few friends back in the UK. My red and green cards featured a little pine tree lit up with white lights and a big star. The post has been slow but I hope they arrived safe and sound.
This year the holidays will be different. I hope that the season will still be special in its own way for you. Thank you for all the support you have given me and my blogging adventure for another year. Keep safe and please keep visiting. I will be back with my end of year round-up for 2020 very soon!
Christmas tree in the German Colony, Haifa, 2017 (top), 2018 and 2019.


Tamar SB said...

What pretty cards! I love Christmas music and all the lights and decorations. Worst part of working from home all week meant no time for the radio in the car.

Carol @Comfort Spring Station said...

Lovely card and love all the pretty trees. Have a beautiful day!

Michele Morin said...

Fascinated by your cultural context!
Beautiful cards!

Joanne said...

Thank you so much for sharing your cards, your photos, and your thoughts with us at Encouraging Hearts and Home. Pinned.

VeggieMummy said...

Beautiful cards and photos. You have me drooling at the thought of latkes! Have a wonderful holiday season with your family and here's to a brighter 2021. xx

Lalka Crochetka said...

Your Christmas Cards are beautiful - I love the charm of simplicity of your works!
Happy Chanukah!

italiafinlandia said...

Your cards are awesome, as usual. :)
Happy Holidays to you, Lisa!

Villrose said...

Nice season's cards!
Christmas also more or less is a Festival of Lights. Especially here up north with very little day light at this time.

NCSue said...

I've been to Ein Karem - at a different time of year. It's nice to see the Christmas tree there. Thank you for sharing at It brought back a fond memory of my time in Israel.
I hope you had a wonderful Hannukah! Shalom to you, my blog friend.