Merry Christmas, Bon Appetit!

Chrismas may not be a global tradition, but it is definitely one of the festivities we share with millions of people worlwide. Nowadays, more than ever, we can learn about the diverse traditions that exist around the world. For instance, even though we may conjure up a snowy and cold scene, in fact in many places it is summer so people will head to the beach to celebrate these days. The kind of gifts, decorations and rituals may vary, too.Chritmas Around the World Infographic

But there is one thing that the communities that do celebrate Christmas have in common: meals are a big issue. In short, the idea is to share a special meal with your dear ones, so family get-togethers are more common these days. But while meat and vegetables are a likely combination almost everywhere, what varies is the way the food presented, the traditional Christmas dishes of each community, the amount of food and, also, I would say, the standard level of expectation of both hosts and guests. Depending on your context, you might just stick to what has been traditionally cooked at Christmas year after year or you might be in for some new features to be shown at your Christmas table.

On this video, Chef Vivian Howard answers holiday questions like: How can I make a cheese ball? Is there usually too much to eat at Christmas? (Answers go from start to minute 6.00)

Would you like to share your views on this? 

You may do so on Twitter. All you have to do is tweet your opinion followed by #one_click. For more information on how to use twitter and the hashtag #one_click go to: http://wp.me/P3tqiu-7J Or leave a comment on the blog.

Here are some questions to help the conversation going:

  • What kind of meals are traditional where you are from?
  • Do you enjoy being the host of the family get-together?
  • What do you think makes Christmas meals so special?
  • What are your favourite Christmas meals?
  • What is your favourite dessert?
  • Do you enjoy introducing different dishes?
  • Do you think we sometimes have too much food on the table?
  • Would you like to share your own favourite recipe with us?

Christmas Shopping: Joy or Craze?

Yesterday was Black Friday, which kicks off the Christmas shopping season. It is a tradition that started in the USA but it is becoming increasingly popular in many other countries. Retailers advertise great deals making shoppers flock to the shops with the idea of getting great bargains. For more information about Black Friday you can read Black Friday explained on Wikipedia

It seems that the Christmas shopping campaign makes sales boost , which is not bad news given the current situation. On top of that, we all have some shopping to do at Christmas so, the cheaper the prices, the better. But some people argue that the whole concept of Black Friday and the Christmas shopping frenzy may have gone a bit over the top. What about the small businesses? Does it promote over-consumption among the population?

However, there are alternatives to celebrating Black Friday. Movements like Buy Nothing Day and Small Business Saturday defend different attitudes towards Christmas shopping.

In this article from Tree Hugger you will find out more about Small Business Saturday. What is their main argument? Would it make sense to have something like this in your town? Does it exist already?

Also, the video below shows an interesting interview with Kalle Lasn who explains what Buy Nothing Day defends. The TV newsreader has something to say, too. Watch the discussion. How long does he suggest to quit shopping? What kind of problems does shopping cause? What does she think about it? Who do you agree with most? 

#occeoic chat

Do you feel like chatting about this on Twitter? All you have to do is tweet your opinion followed by #ooceoic.

For more information on how to use twitter and the hashtag #ooceoic go to: http://wp.me/P3tqiu-7J

Here are some questions to help start the conversation.

What do you think about the Christmas shopping season?

What do you like most about the shopping season? The music? the lights?

Do you enjoy shopping for presents?

Do you think the Christmas season starts too soon?

What was it like when you were younger? Has it changed at all? What is better? Was it worse?

Feel free add ideas of your own, media and links!