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Cicero community celebrates Christmas all around the world

Christmas tree formed with different flags

Christmas tree formed with different flags

Citalli Estrada and America Zamora

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Christmas is celebrated all over the world, in every corner of every continent, and these various cultural celebrations are happening in Cicero, as well.

Christmas is celebrated from Argentina to Zimbabwe. In Mexico, they celebrate by making traditional dishes such as Tamales, Pozole, and Menudo. It’s celebrated by playing games, having a posada, or just eating together; they also wait until its midnight to open the gifts. In the Morton community, there are many different ways of celebrating it; one of the major perks of having a big student group is that we can incorporate different cultures in one holiday. Everyone has a different and unique way of celebrating Christmas with their families, making it one of the most special and cherished holidays all over the school.

Principal of Morton East, Mr. Jose Gamboa, has a remarkable way of celebrating Christmas with his family.

“I’m married to an Italian woman, so we have three Christmases. Her father is very Americanized; it’s not really much of a celebration — more kind of like a dinner. Then, Santa comes in (an actual Santa) with a bag full of gifts, gives it to kid the kids, then it ends like around 7. (That’s only one Christmas.),” Principal Gamboa said.

But once Mr. Gamboa goes to celebrate Christmas with his side of the family, it’s your typical Mexican Christmas.

“My parent’s family is Mexican, so we actually celebrate it in my grandma’s house in Berwyn. For us, it’s a bunch of games; then, we eat dinner. Everyone brings something of their own like beans, tortillas, lechon, and jamon: it’s usually a pretty good choice of food. Then, we start the posadas and we sing: usually the newest girl cousin or woman in the family (is given) a little baby Jesus or the newest born baby in the family. We close the door and we sing back and forth — the men on one side and the women on the other, then we pray the rosary. After we pray the rosary, we play more games and we wait until it’s midnight: we used to do midnight mass, but now we just do the rosary at the house and at midnight, we start exchanging gifts,”

This is only Mr. Gamboa’s Christmas eve, on Christmas Day he goes back to his wife’s side of the family.

“Christmas day we go to my wife’s mother’s house. Her Christmas is very relaxed, almost always in pajamas. We go down and see the unwrapped presents that Sana brought and exchange gifts that we brought. Then, we eat at noon, and have another meal late afternoon. It is a long two days for me and my family, but it’s a lot of fun.

This senior has not as long of a Christmas but similar traditional meals

“Generally, my family is at my house and we set up the nativity, watch Spanish Christmas specials, and we gather around and eat tamales and pozole while my sister makes Christmas pastries. After that we help with the Christmas tree and turn on our decorations toward the night,” senior Modesto James said.

“Our tradition is to celebrate on Christmas Eve. We spend it with family and eat tamales, pozole, and other traditional Mexican dishes. We open presents at midnight and thank god for another Christmas together,” senior Humberto Macedo.

Junior Jocelyn Cabrera has similar traditions that her family does on Christmas.

“My family and I make tamales and pozole, we also have our grandpa dress up as Santa; then we open our gifts past twelve,” junior Jocelyn Cabrera

Sophomore Sabrina celebrates Christmas by cooking with her family all together.

“We go to my aunt’s house and we prepare dinner all together and we prepare the turkey,” sophomore Sabrina.

But, the most important thing about Christmas is spending time with your families.

“We just thank god that we have another Christmas together,” senior Humberto Macedo

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Cicero community celebrates Christmas all around the world