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Christmas in Copenhagen

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It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas in Copenhagen.

I have never seen a population of people so excited for a holiday. Though the Danes are not religious, they celebrate Christmas for practically the entire winter! As Honorary Danes, my friends and I have been participating in all the Christmas hoorah, and it has been magical.

Christmas decorations on Stroget

Christmas decorations on Stroget

Window displays at Illum to rival Macy's in New York City

Window displays at Illum to rival Macy’s in New York City

There are Christmas markets everywhere, which we visit every chance we get. Living in city center has yet another benefit of keeping me close to all the festive decorations and markets!

Christmas market on Stroget

Christmas market on Stroget

Christmas Market on Stroget

Christmas Market on Stroget

"Christmas in Nyhavn"

“Christmas in Nyhavn”

This past Thursday, we had Christmas Hygge in our house. Louise and Vince got a tree, which we decorated as the Danes do, crafting stars and hearts to hang.

The only man on the floor, doing his manly business. Sassing all the way, of course.

The only man on the floor, doing his manly business. Sassing all the way, of course.

Christmas Hygge!

Christmas Hygge!

Christmas living room! Complete with Tuborg J-Day sign, Christmas tree, and fireplace TV.

Christmas living room! Complete with Tuborg J-Day sign, Christmas tree, and fireplace TV.

We also made Christmas cookies and drank Glogg (“gloog”), the famous Danish Christmas drink. It’s warm red wine infused sangria-style with cinnamon, slivered almonds, and raisins. Pretty good!

"Glogg" Danish Christmas wine

“Glogg” Danish Christmas wine

Danish cookie recipe.. we needed a little assistance from Louise

traditional cookie recipe.. we needed a little assistance from Louise to read it

Friday night was the last night of November. During our celebration, it snowed! Of course, we ran outside to frolic in the fluff.

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pausing in a snowstorm for a photo op...

pausing in a snowstorm for a photo op…

And the next morning…

from my window

from my window

in my courtyard

in my courtyard

Since then, it’s been snowing instead of raining every day, which is much more picturesque to say the least. December literally brought a beautiful winter wonderland!

Just when I thought there was nothing else to look forward to, I heard about the Christmas tree lighting at City Hall! There was a parade from Nyhavn, and then “Santa” climbed a gigantic cherry picker to light the top of the tree WITH A BLOW TORCH that he swung around and lit the star with. I honestly thought the tree would catch on fire, but no one else seemed concerned…

after the lighting

after the lighting

Yesterday, while I was walking to class, I stumbled upon some ice sculptors in the square. I swear Copenhagen is real-life Whoville! It’s never ending!!

Image 12

Finally, last night, DIS took the Arts & Culture House to Tivoli for the 30th anniversary Crazy Christmas Cabaret. It was called HitchCock Up! and starred Vivienne McKee, whose Crazy Christmas Cabarets have attained a cult following over the past 30 years. I can understand why, they’re hilarious!!

Inside Tivoli

Inside Tivoli

CHRISTMAS IN COPENHAGEN IS MY FAVORITE TIME OF YEAR!

Much love.

WINTER WELCOME WEEK

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I’ve invented a holiday! It’s called WINTER WELCOME WEEK, and here’s how it came to be:

As you probably have guessed, I’m a big proponent of celebration of any sort. I also have seasonal depression. Living in Denmark has not been so bad darkness-wise, until now, and I know it’s only going to get worse. So, to give myself a little pick me up, and combine my American culture with the Danish culture, I invented WINTER WELCOME WEEK. Mia even had a visitor from Villanova, Caroline, who got to experience this holiday with us!

This Wednesday was Halloween in America, which has always been a huge deal to me. Dressing up was one of my favorite childhood activities, but I never grew out of it. Luckily, American college life supports me in this. In Copenhagen, I hadn’t really planned on dressing up (still trying to be a Dane sometimes), but at the last minute, my RA Louise and I got a little too into making a toilet paper dress…

…and I ended up a Mummy Cheerleader. Louise even made the dress so I could use the little ladies room, it was really an ingenious design! I got TP pom poms and a bow, and I was off to the few bars that support Americans on Halloween!

be scaredddd

bow!

Thanks for sneaking up on me, Caroline.

me, Caroline (tiger), and Mia (kitty)

laughing too hard to run!

Needless to say, Halloween was so great that we couldn’t stop there. Mia and I did not go to classes on Thursday (you can’t do anything productive during WINTER WELCOME WEEK) and showed Caroline around Copenhagen. I went back to my favorite place, Nyhavn, and Kongs Nytorv (a cool square nearby). We went shopping on Stroget (the pedestrian shopping street) and I got an infinity scarf and crepes with banana and nutella (YUM). It was a relaxing day for us. At night, I made my mom’s famous eggplant, and everyone helped me bread, fry, and eat! Vince, Marina, Mia, Caroline, and I had a hyggeligt night in, complete with candles, which I am now addicted to.

Me (in my winter jacket!!), Caroline, and Mia

the making of a crepe

YUM people. Crepes are bangin’

In Denmark, they don’t celebrate Halloween OR Thanksgiving, and so there isn’t much to look forward to in the winter besides Christmas. The Danes counter this depressing thought with their own holiday, called J Dag (“J-Day”) to kick off the Christmas season. On J-Day (the first Friday in November), at 8:59 PM, giant delivery trucks arrive at all the prominent bars to unload the brand new Christmas beer! Up until this moment, no one has even seen the can, so it’s a huge deal for all Danes. After that, Christmas decorations start to pop up all around town, and playing Christmas music is officially acceptable. It’s kind of like when Starbucks comes out with Red Cups for the holiday season, except everyone gets drunk for this. Louise got us tickets to her university’s J-Dag party (which would also be my school if I went to college here), so I went with Vince and Emma. (Earlier that night, we had heard Vince sing in a recital for the Copenhagen music school, which is a HUGE honor, so we were also celebrating that. He’s super talented.) You’ll notice, the pictures from this night are few and low-quality, my apologies!

Tuborg Julebryg (yule-brew)

Getting pumped at 9 PM

Louise, me, and half of Vince

Louiseeee my favorite Dane, my RA

This would be one of my classrooms!

If you thought WINTER WELCOME WEEK was coming to an end, think again. Saturday was Sensation White!! Literally everyone in Europe came to Copenhagen for Sensation–there ended up being over 20,000 people there. Basically, Sensation is a giant world-traveling rave where everyone dresses in white, there is a lineup of electronic/house music DJs, circus performers, and light shows from giant structures placed throughout the stadium. If you’re having a hard time conceptualizing it, watch this quick video that Sensation put out before the event: CLICK HERE. At raves, you’re not supposed to wear real people clothes, so I got a giant t-shirt from H & M and my roommate here made it into a dress for me. I wore cheap little white sneakers (which ended up black with grime), white tights, glitterglitterglitter all over, and a white heart painted around my eye. At the start of the pre-party at Mia’s, I look sort of like a person, but by the time we left for Sensation, the glitter was out of control and we had all painted each other’s faces (that’s where I got my heart). Sensation itself was, well, indescribable. Some people say it’s not their scene, but the loud music and dancing put me in a happy place. I think I get that from my mom (love you LB).

I don’t think you readers know Emily, but she’s the best.

Sensation, like a boss.

during the light show

candid captured by Aimee, told you I love this kind of thing!

With the end of Sensation came the wrap-up of WINTER WELCOME WEEK. Sunday family dinner with my housemates brought it all together with some cozy community bonding, and of course more candles.

I don’t know how I will celebrate WINTER WELCOME WEEK in America, but it will definitely be a permanent fixture in my life from now on.

This might have been the best week of my semester, but then again, I’m always saying that…

Much love.

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