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Saturday, 24 December 2016

Christmas carolers

On the morning of Xmas Eve in Greece young children banging away at 'musical' triangles come knocking on your door with cries of

Na ta Poume  ............   Can we tell you?

The answer is (nearly ) always, 'come in,  come in and tell us'

They will trill away accompanied by their ringing triangles, little ones joining in when they know the words, the older children  often singing so fast you can hardly understand the words but every householder knows them off by heart anyway.

You must then give them a small amount of money and say Kronia Polla, Many Happy Returns.  It doesn't have to be a huge amount of money, 50 cents will do.  But, if they are children of  relatives, neighbours or  close friends then a little more is expected to be handed over.  Clever children will make sure they go first to the houses of their grandparents, godparents, aunts and next door neighbours.  A house visited by these young singers is a blessed house and most people are happy to have cute kids making early morning noises in their doorways and will hand over the reward with maybe a chocolate or small xmas biscuit.

This is an age old tradition, small children singing the 'kalanda' on Christmas Eve, New Years Eve and on the eve of the 6th January when the blessing of the waters takes place.

Our kalanda singers and a loose translation

Good evening, noble men
If this is what you wish
The Holy birth of Christ
I will tell you in your honourable house
Christ is born today
In Bethleham
Heavens rejoice
And all Nature celebrates

The xmas loaf ready to go in the oven. 

 Bread making has been going on all day.  I started reviving the sourdough sponge last night and at midday began adding the flour and kneading the dough.  It will go in the oven around 8 tonight and be eaten with our midday meal on Christmas day, sliced by the eldest male in the family.


  1. Thank you so much ,it so interesting to read about other traditions, you have beautiful grand children, happy Christmas to you and your family.

    1. Thank you Yael. May you be blessed every day

  2. What fascinating traditions, they remind me of the Christmas carolers in England. I use to be one of those carolers, together with the neighbor children.
    Your bread looks scrumptious, I can only imagine the aroma in your kitchen!
    Here's wishing you a very Merry Christmas, and a Happy New Year, I've so enjoyed your friendship over the past several months.

    1. The bread has just come out of the oven. It rose up and up and I hope it is baked right through. Must take another photo.

      Thanks for your wishes and your company too. Hope you have a marvellous day. We had half the family tonight and all of them tomorrow. Thank goodness I had two girls who don't mind cooking and cleaning up.

      A very merry Xmas to you

  3. When I was small I always used to go around singing carols, it was one of the best nights of the year. The last time I went, I was running the village Youth Club, and we were raising money for an electric wheelchair for a local girl; we raised over £2,000 in one night! Christmas makes people generous.

    Happy Christmas to you and your family. Cro xx

    1. Our Xmas is one of the best this year. Chaos. Far too much food and happy children.

      Thanks for your wishes .

  4. We don't have any of this here. It's just to hot to be going from door to door singing carols about snow
    I think it would be nice to spend Christmas once in the northern hemisphere
    Wishing you and your family a very merry Christmas

    1. Thanks angela..Angeliki. have seen pics of my brothers Xmas in Perth. Ham, so yummy, pavlova (,the Aussie version) short sleeves and tables round the pool. Perfect! Hope your and your family had a great time

  5. Happy Christmas, Linda. Love and joy to you and your family. Elaine xxx

    ps The bread looks intriguing, I'll look forward to seeing an updated photograph some time. Bread is my absolute favourite thing to bake. I made our loaves yesterday, not sourdough, but it was a long, slow, rise (18 hours) which adds a fabulous flavour and is almost as good as the real thing. Merry Christmas!xx

    1. Hope your Xmas was wonderful and you're healthy and happy. Updated photos coming soon

  6. Sounds like you are keeping the traditions going with the bread making. It is just beginning to get dark here and no doubt in about 10 minutes it will be pitch black. We are all quiet and both doing nothing but reading (or me playing on the laptop)!

    1. Happy relaxation. So much energy put into this one day. Its 9pm here now and i finally have quiet. House is a bloody mess. Im sure it will be im some sort of order by new year.

      Blogging time. Thats my relaxation!


  7. Wonderful traditions. Happy Christmas LA.

    1. And a very merry xmas to you and those you love.