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Canada and its typical Christmas traditions .

Canada and its typical Christmas traditions .

It’s the time of the year we all have been waiting for, it’s time for Christmas. A time of the year where the winter snow adorns the street and the ugly sweaters comes out of the closet. It’s a time to bond and indulge in family traditions. Enjoy the comfort of family and friends while sipping on warm wine and eggnogs.

However, does tradition vary based on countries or is Santa a common belief all around the world? For example in Austria instead of Santa people believe in “Krisken” and instead of Santa’s loyal elves, they believe in “Krampus” to ward off evil. So how is it going to be like in other countries where Christmas is the main celebration?

Today, we decided to put together the highlights of Christmas in Canada. Are they similar to their border brother America or do they practice a completely different Christmas?

1. Santa Is The Same Everywhere

Santa: it’s a child’s wish to watch his thick belly slide down with ease bellow their chimneys and leave presents. That Santa is Ho Ho Ho-ing with his reindeer and leaving trails of cookie crumbs behind has been the belief of people all around the world. It’s not much different in Canada either. Canadians pride upon telling their children that Canada is the home of Santa, although the Finnish may disagree but Canadians celebrate Santa with a more personal relationship.

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Have you heard of the Santa Parade?

If you haven’t, then you’ll be excited to know Toronto has been the oldest organizer of the Santa parade. Happening in the week of Christmas, the streets of Toronto are filled with Santas and their fans. It started in the midst of 1913 where a huge Santa was paraded around the streets and children followed his trail. Now it’s an international event, with live broadcasts all around the world where 25 floats and more than 2000 people can be seen participating.

However, in the South Shore of Nova Scotia, Santa brings a laugh among the people. In a celebration called Belsnickeling, people take pride in dressing up in funny Santa costumes and creating a trail of laughter.

Pleasantly, we are not surprised that Canada has managed to embrace diversity even with Santa.

2. ‘Réveillon’, A French History

We are all aware of the two main influences in Canada. The English and the French. The French cities of Canada such as Quebec are some of the prettiest cities of this century. With it being part of the UNESCO Culture Heritage program, Quebec is deemed a prestigious and unique city.

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However, that isn’t the only point that stands out with the French community in Canada. ‘Réveillon’ is an event celebrated by the French community on the eve of Christmas. This celebration starts with the Midnight Mass and ends in the early hours of Christmas morning. A beautiful tradition where they pray to ‘Père Noel’ (A Version of Santa) to pay a visit and leave gifts for the children.

A traditional meal for Christmas in the cultural Quebec is ‘ragoût aux pattes de cochons’ which is made from pigs feet however over the years many have opted for an easier alternative which is called ‘Tortière’, a form of meat pie which is usually made out of venison however sometimes using pig or beef meat .

Are you excited to be part of the ‘Réveillon’?

3. The Old Skool Goodies Of Canadian Christmas Treats

The best part about Christmas is the fact that we can enjoy the beautiful delicacies that are blessed onto us once every year. The tiny gingerbread, the chocolate shaped Santa and the cinnamon cookies are a tradition. The rock hard fruit cake and the delicious hot chocolate to go with it is a tradition in all Christmas countries.

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However, Canadians await their own unique candy, homemade in their motherland . At first, the names may throw you off, however, we have all learned not to judge a book by its cover. Barley Candy, similar to our chocolate Santa’s these are formed in various shapes that represent Christmas. If you’ve enjoyed gummy bears than their appearance might not be that drastic however it definitely is sweet.

“Chicken Bones” is another of Canada’s wonderful candies. It’s not made out of chicken bones or shaped like one, however, it has a soft and fluffy exterior with a milk chocolate filling. Once the exterior melts in your mouth, you’ll then be able to enjoy the juicy and soft center.

For Canadians, these candies are definitely a treat.

4. All Kinds Of Meat

Meat mania is a common thing in every household during Christmas, for vegetarians, it becomes a challenge to adapt and enjoy meat. In Canada however, the multiculturalism has created a diverse array of food, where not only meat is the main delicacy but several other food groups as well.

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For example, Canada’s Ukrainian community which is the largest Ukranian community in the world after in Ukraine and in Russia, enjoy themselves with a platter of 12 different kinds of meat while the community in Nova Scotia starts Christmas with an array of seafood. Usually for the main course lobster is the popular dish, since Nova Scotia is located near the shore, their produce’s come directly from the sea.

Through the food, you can identify the cultural background and the type of natural produce that’s located in that region. Bring them all together then you’ve got Canada.

In Conclusion

If you’re planning on staying in Canada this Christmas then you should definitely check these things out. It will be an amazing experience for you .

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Last Updated on October 14, 2020

Had a Bad Day? 7 Ways to Rebound From It and Feel Good Again

Had a Bad Day? 7 Ways to Rebound From It and Feel Good Again

Today didn’t turn out as you planned, but it doesn’t mean you’re weak. It simply means that you’re human, and you’re not bad just because you had a bad day.

“Not everyday is a good day but there is something good in every day.” -Alice Morse Earle

It’s not the end of the world when you find yourself thinking “I had a bad day,” but it can feel like it. You may have had plans that fell apart, experiences that set you back, and interactions that only did harm.

You may have started the day thinking you could take on it all, only to find you could hardly get out of bed. When you have a bad day, you can forget to look at the good.

Sometimes, self-care helps us to remember why we are worth it. It helps us to recharge and reset our mindset. It helps us to know that there are still options and that the day isn’t over yet.

Love yourself today, no matter how hard it’s been. That’s the way to find yourself amidst the hardships you have. That’s how you center yourself and regain focus and live a more meaningful life. Give yourself some credit and compassion.

Here are 7 ways to rebound from a bad day using self-compassion as a tool. If you had a bad day, these are for you!

1. Make a Gratitude List

In a study on gratitude, psychologists Dr. Robert A Emmons and Dr. Michael E. McCullough conducted an experiment where one group of people wrote out gratitude lists for ten weeks while another group wrote about irritations. The study found that the group that wrote about gratitude reported more optimistic mindsets in their lives[1].

Overall, having a gratitude list improved well-being and made one truly grateful by counting the blessings in their lives.

Write a list of what you are grateful for if you had a bad day. Make it as long as you like, but also remember to note why you’re grateful for each thing you write.

What has given you the most joy? What has set you up for better days? Keep a tally of triumphs in mind, especially when you do have the bad days.

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The day doesn’t define you, and you still have things of value that surround you. These could be material things, spiritual connections and experiences, relationships, basic needs, emotional and mental well-being, physical health, progress towards hopes and dreams, or simply being alive.

Here are some other simple ways to practice gratitude.

2. Write in a Journal

Journaling affects your overall mental health, which also affects physical health and aids in the management of stress, depression, anxiety, and more[2].

All you need is a pen and paper, or you could do an online, password-protected journal such as Penzu. The key is to get started and not pressure yourself on how polished or perfect it is. You don’t need to have prior experience to start journal writing. Just start.

Write out everything that is bothering you for 15 minutes. This helps with rumination, processing problems, and can even aid with brainstorming solutions.

However you approach it, you can find patterns of thinking that no longer serve you and start to transform your overall mental state. This will impact all areas of your life and is a great coping skill.

3. Meditate

Meditation can help you overcome negative thought patterns, worrying about the future, dwelling on the past, or struggling to overcome a bad day[3]. It shifts your mentality and helps you focus on the present or any one thing you truly want to focus on.

Here is an example of a meditation you can do:

Get into a comfortable position. Close your eyes. Rest your body, release tension, and unclench your jaw. Tighten and release each muscle group in a body scan for progressive muscle relaxation.

Focus on your breath, taking a few deep breaths. Let your belly expand when you breathe in for diaphragmatic breathing. Empty yourself completely of air, then return to normal breathing.

Next, focus on the idea of self-love and let it erase negative thoughts. Think about the ways you’ve been judging yourself, with the narratives coming up that your mind may create.

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Give yourself unconditional love and release judgment. Take your time meditating on this because you matter. This is particularly important if you had a bad day.

Check out this article for more on how to get started with a meditation practice.

4. Do Child’s Pose

Yoga Outlet says:

“Child’s Pose is a simple way to calm your mind, slow your breath, and restore a feeling of peace and safety. Practicing the pose before bedtime can help to release the worries of the day. Practicing in the morning can you help transition from sleeping to waking.”[4]

When you do Child’s Pose, it can be between difficult positions in yoga, or it can be anytime you feel you need a rest. It helps you recover from difficulties and relax the mind.

It also has the physical health benefits of elongating your back, opening your hips, and helping with digestion[5].

To do Child’s Pose, rest your buttocks back on your feet, knees on the floor. Elongate your body over your knees with both arms extended or tucked back, with head and neck resting on the floor[6].

Had a bad day? Try Child's Pose.

     

    Do this pose as a gift to yourself. You are allowing yourself to heal, rest, get time for yourself, recover, and recharge. When you’ve had a bad day, it’s there waiting for you.

    5. Try Positive Self-Talk

    Engage in positive self-talk. This is essentially choosing your thoughts.

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    When you have a negative thought, such as “I can’t do this,” replace it consciously with the thought “I can do this.” Give yourself positive affirmations to help with this.

    Negative self-talk fits into four general categories: personalizing or blaming yourself, magnifying or only focusing on the negative, catastrophizing or expecting the worst to happen, and polarizing or only seeing back and white[7].

    When you stop blaming yourself for everything and start focusing on the positive, expecting things to work out, and seeing the areas of grey in life, you reverse these negative mindsets and engage in positive self-talk.

    When you speak words of kindness to yourself, your brain responds with a more positive attitude. That attitude will affect everything you do. It’s how you take care of yourself if you had a bad day.

    Check in with yourself to know when you are having negative self-talk. Are you seeing patterns? When did they start to become a problem? Are you able to turn these thoughts around?

    6. Use Coping Skills and Take a Break

    Use your coping skills. This means not letting your thoughts take control of yourself.

    You can distract yourself and escape a bit. Do things you love. You can exercise, listen to music, dance, volunteer or help someone, be in nature, or read a book.

    It isn’t about repression. It’s about redirection. You can’t stay in thoughts that are no longer working for you.

    Sometimes, it’s okay to get out of your own way. Give yourself a break from the things going on in your head. You can always come back to a problem later. This may even help you figure out the best course of action as sometimes stepping away is the only way to see the solution.

    If you had a bad day, you may not feel like addressing what went wrong. You may need a break, so take one.

    7. If a Bad Day Turns Into Bad Days

    “I believe depression is legitimate. But I also believe that if you don’t exercise, eat nutritious food, get sunlight, get enough sleep, consume positive material, surround yourself with support, then you aren’t giving yourself a fighting chance.” –Jim Carrey

    If you’ve been feeling out of control, depressed, or unstable for more than a few weeks, it’s time to call a mental health professional. This is not because you have failed in any way. It’s because you are human, and you simply need help.

    You may not be able to quickly rebound from a bad day, and that’s fine. Feel what you feel, but don’t let it consume you.

    When you talk to a professional, share the techniques that you have already tried here and whether they were helpful. They may tell you additional ideas or gain insights from your struggles of not being able to rebound from a series of bad days.

    If you’re having more than just a bad day, they will want to know. If you don’t have the answers, that’s okay, too. You just need to try these tools and figure out how you’re feeling. That’s all that’s required of you.

    Keep taking care of yourself. Any progress is progress, no matter how small. Give yourself a chance to get better by reaching out.

    Final Thoughts

    If you had a bad day, don’t let it stop you.

    Know this: It’s okay not to be okay. You have a right to feel what you feel. But there is something you can do about it.

    You can invest in yourself via self-care.

    You are not alone in this. Everyone has bad days from time to time. You just need to know that you are the positive things you tell yourself.

    More Things You Can Do If You Had a Bad Day

    Featured photo credit: Anthony Tran via unsplash.com

    Reference

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