Friday, December 24, 2010

Do Japanese celebrate Christmas?

Christmas trees on my dinner table
Yes, we do! Most of Japanese celebrate Christmas, whether one like it or not. Most Japanese parents are supposed to buy a Christmas gift to their kids who already know that Santa Clause is their dad in fact. It is very good opportunity for single men and women to participate in Christmas party to meet their future spouse at the most romantic time of the year. I went to supermarket this morning and there were a lot of senior citizens who are also coming there to buy Christmas gift and food (mostly grilled chickens or sushi) for themselves. It seems to me that Japanese may feel that they are out of fashion if one does not celebrate Christmas. Even my mother, who would turn 80 years old this year if alive, used to prepare Christmas food for us; It was such a wonderful memory for me.   I think it was very fun event also for young mothers at Japan's high economic growth in 1960's and 1970's as nuclear family's party (which concept was newly imported Japan at that time), different from New Year's Days where one is obligated to do all the  troublesome, rigid (but traditional) practices for all the families and relatives. Christmas party is much more casual and even giving us the scent of Western countries. So IMO, this event is still widely celebrated in Japan. But now for me, it is too busy to do so! I should complete my paintings in process for group shows of next year, must prepare for New Year holidays, have not finished year end cleaning, need to take part in rice-cake making festival in my neighbor, write blog, write cards, do year-end book closing, oh I have to buy a toy for my niece for New Year's gift.... Anyway, Happy Holidays!


  1. Nice post Itsuko. I am lucky, I don't have to do too many New Years' activities, only nengajou. It's a busy time for many Japanese women. All the best for your painting in 2011.

  2. So many things to do at the end of year!
    For the first time since I married, I bought Christmas cake this year, instead of baking by myself! I wish you good luck for coming year.