Holiday Traditions are Comin’ To Town

The diverse community at EBHS has some fun ways of celebrating the most festive time of the year.

Alefiya Presswala, Bear Hub Editor

The holiday season is finally here, and with it comes many different holiday traditions. We all know about Christmas lights and hot cocoa, but what about the lesser known, kind of weird, unique traditions?

Here are some special ways that students from EBHS celebrate this time of year:

Pictured here is senior Nora Hennessy and her large extended family on Christmas Eve (2018), all wearing matching red and gray pajamas. What a fun way to spend time together!

Nora Hennessy (12) : “I like to have friends over each winter to make cookies for Christmas. We make an obscene amount of cookies- multiple batches of chocolate chip, peanut butter kiss, so much fudge, sugar cookies to decorate, pretzels with chocolate, and Christmas crack.”

She added, “A lot of the time, our entire family wears matching PJs, which we change into right after mass.”

Celia Schmeidler (12) : “Since there are no “Hanukkah lights” to hang up, my family makes a Menorah out of lava lamps every year that can be seen from outside our window. It is so beautiful.”

Derek Maniquiz (10): “My family is Filipino, so we put up our Christmas decorations in September. It’s normal in the Philippines because we don’t have any holidays during the fall time, so we just put up our decorations and keep adding to them until December.”

Ginger Felumero (11): “The seven fishes are part of an Italian Christmas Eve tradition. You basically eat seven different fishes (I don’t because I don’t like fish). My family believes it’s symbolic of the seven sacraments in the Roman Catholic religion. Usually, the fish eaten are salted cod, eel, calamari/squid, clams, scungilli, and the last ones are sort of interchangeable.”

Sriya Alla (12): “My family and I prepare Indian dances to perform for each other on New Year’s.”

Sophomore Amena Presswala shows off the lights that her family put up around her front door. This is just one section of her family’ light display- the rest of the bushes in her yard are also covered in colorful, twinkling lights.

Amena Presswala (10): “My older sister and dad are really intense about putting up Christmas lights, even though we don’t celebrate Christmas. Each year, they try to make our display larger and more colorful than the previous year.”

Reva Bahuguna (12): “My family and I always go to iHop on Christmas morning after opening presents.”

Aishi Kapoor (11): “My family makes the Christmas star ourselves. Each year we make a new star and decorate it to our liking. It usually reflects some important moments that happened each year- like this year, we got our green cards, so the star will be green.”

Mary Elgayar (12), who celebrates Coptic Christmas, told the Hub: “We go to church on Christmas Eve at 7pm and usually stay until a little after midnight, and then usually we go home and eat right away. Like, literally at 1am my family and I always eat chicken broth with rice or just straight chicken and cheese and sometimes we like to go to other people’s houses, and then we end up at home at 4am which is always fun.”

These traditions are perfect examples of the fun you can have with friends and family while doing simple things- after all, isn’t that what the holiday spirit is all about?