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A Czech Christmas in Prague

Prague is a beautiful city that comes even more alive in the Christmas season. There are over a dozen town squares throughout the city that turn into Christmas markets. Tents that offer mulled wine, hot honey liquor, and sweet treats such as "Trdelnik," attract visitors and locals alike.

We spent most of December in Prague, so we got to wander around town and visit many of the Christmas markets. One afternoon, as I was walking out of the library, it even snowed! It was a short, but magically beautiful downfall. Although the snow didn't stick, the experience of walking around the old town square while the white fluffiness was sticking onto our jacks was absolutely breathtaking!

The Czech Christmas is celebrated on Christmas Eve, on December 24. The traditional dinner is fried carp with potato salad. Some street markets sell live carp a couple days before Christmas Eve. The old tradition (which not many people uphold anymore) is to buy a live carp, keep it in the bathtub, and then kill it on Christmas morning so that it's as fresh as it gets for dinner. Rather than Santa, we have baby Jesus. He comes into people's homes to put gifts under the tree while they eat dinner. After dinner, he rings the bell and the family gathers around to open their gifts.

This year we were blessed to celebrate Christmas with our close friends who live in Prague. We had a traditional dinner of fried carp and potato salad made with love by the ladies of the house! After dinner, as tradition says, baby Jesus (Simi :-)) came and handed out presents.

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