Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Day 1: Mexico

The Mexican Flag
Hi guys! Our first stop is going to be Mexico, because that’s where Mack and Kate (the characters from Wycliffe) grew up.

First off, how do you say “Merry
Christmas” in Spanish? It’s Feliz Navidad. So go tell someone Feliz Navidad today!

 Christmas in Mexico is celebrated from Dec. 12th until Jan. 6th. Beginning on Dec. 16th until Christmas Eve, kids often perform Posada processions. (Posada is Spanish for 'inn' or 'lodging'). There are nine Posadas, one for every night from Dec.16-24th, and these celebrate the part of the Christmas story where Joseph and Mary are looking for a room in an inn.

A building decorated for Posadas
The outside of houses are decorated with evergreens, moss and paper lanterns, and kids are given candles and a board with painted clay figures of Mary riding on a donkey and Joseph beside her. The children walk with the candles and the board all around the streets, calling out to friends and neighbors as they walk. They also stop at different houses, singing about how Joseph and Mary went around Bethlehem asking for a room.

Families celebrating Posadas
After the song is finished, the people in each house tell the kids that they don't have room for Mary and Joseph! This happens at every house until the very last night when the kids are finally told that there is a room for Mary and Joseph, and they're invited inside. The children say prayers of thanks for finally finding a place to stay, and the party begins!

Food, games and fireworks help to finish out the Posada for that night. Each night of the nine Posadas a different house hosts a party. And on the last Posada-on Christmas Eve-a manger and figures of shepherds are also put on the board with Mary and Joseph. When the final Posada house is found and the kids are invited in, a baby Jesus is put into the manger. Then families go to a midnight church service, and after the service is over, more fireworks are lit to celebrate the official start of Christmas!

Fun Facts: 

*Kids often get their presents on January 6, which is the day of
A Three Kings Cake
Epiphany, or El Dia de los Reyes (the day of the three kings) in Spanish.
The presents are left by the three kings, and it’s tradition to eat a special cake called Rosca de Reyes, or “three kings cake.” Hidden inside the cake is a figure of baby Jesus, and whoever finds it in their piece of cake becomes the “godparent” of Jesus for that year.

*Another important day is Candelaria (also known as Candelmas). That’s
celebrated on February 2 and remembers the day that Jesus was taken
to the temple as a baby and officially presented before God (Luke
2:22-40). Lots of Mexicans have parties on this day to mark the end of
Mexican Christmas celebrations.

*The biggest angel ornament ever made was from Mexico. Sergio
Rodriguez made an angel in January 2001 that was 18 feet and 3
inches high and with wings that spanned 11 feet and 9 inches. But the
most amazing thing about the angel was that it was made out of old

beer bottles-2,946 of them!

How to Make Mexican Hot Chocolate:
*3 cups instant hot cocoa mix (any brand)
*3 teaspoons ground cinnamon
*1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
*A pinch of cayenne pepper

1. Combine all the ingredients and mix together
2. Blend 1/2 cup of the mix with 1/4 cup milk and 3/4 cup boiling water.
3. Store the leftover mix in a container, unless you're making six cups (that's how many this recipe makes)
4. Stir and enjoy! If you want to be really fancy, you can dust a light layer of cocoa powder on top of your drink. Yum!

All of the above information was taken from the Wycliffe-created characters, Kate and Mack. If you would like to sign up for more children activities from Kate and Mack, or learn about the book they feature in (Around the World with Kate and Mack), click on this link:


  1. I want some Mexican hot chocolate. It sounds yummy. You should post on how Coptic Christians (Egyptians) celebrate Christmas. I think they do it in January. Also, is your background a picture of the Cliffs of Moher in Ireland? They look familiar to me.

  2. Christy: I made the hot cocoa, and it tasted delicious. I don't know if Egypt is one of the countries they will send me info on, but I can look it up if they don't. I'm not sure about the background picture, but it probably is. Hope you're having fun in New York!