Christmas holds beloved traditions for many cultures around the globe. Experiencing different holiday customs is my favorite tradition of the season. A few years ago, I adopted the German tradition of the Advent Calendar. I – being a techie – went for an online animated one recommended by a fellow techie.
Artist Jacquie Lawson designs a delightful, animated advent calendar. I eagerly await her creation each December. Lawson and her team take us to a new place every year. She visited Scottish traditions in 2019 with an Advent Calendar located in Edinburgh. This year we’ve traveled to a small Nordic village.
Lawson’s Nordic village includes Scandinavian folklore and tasty recipes. My favorite piece of folklore from this year’s Advent Calendar is the Yule Goat. It has become the symbol for Scandinavian Christmas.
Fun Facts About the Yule Goat
- Pagan Origins: Many believe the tradition of the Yule Goat represents the Norse God Thor, who rode across the sky in a chariot pulled by two goats
- Swedish Beliefs: The Swedes believed the Yule Goat was a Spirit who traveled to Sweden prior to Christmas Day. The goat made sure all the Yule preparations were done correctly
- Move Over Santa: In the 19th century, the Yule Goat rather than Father Christmas brought the presents. Father Christmas eventually took over the job
- Hay Goat: The Yule Goat was traditionally made from the last batch of hay at the end of the harvest season
- Big Goat: Some Scandinavian cities still build a Yule Goat from wood and hay at the center of town. These goats can be over 40 feet high
Be Positive. Be Happy. Be Well. AND BE MERRY