While this is not our first Christmas spent in Oconahua, it is our first as full time residents and that is one more milestone for us. I do miss my family and friends and wish they were here, but I do NOT miss the stress that is constant this time of year in the states. The frenetic pace of the holidays encouraged me to test alternative celebration practices for many years as I became discouraged with the focus on material things. Some worked and lasted (baking cookies with family and friends and giving them away) and some fell by the wayside (handmade gifts often bombed).
Our first Christmas was about 8 years back when I brought India and my mom here to celebrate. In those days, our house was not complete so we stayed with Luci for a few days and then headed to the coast for a few more days of beach time.
Turns out that the weather is completely different here than the coast although the drive is only 3.5 hours away. Oconahua is in a volcano zone and the elevation is around 4500 feet above sea level and does get rather chilly in the winter at night. As a result, mom got quite ill and I vowed never to bring her back in the winter months; she is quite content on the coast where she stays nice and warm.
For a great perspective on Navidad in Mexico, visit another blog which I haved linked here: Surviving Mexico as she explains things so well and I could never explain better.
Here are some pics from Christmas Eve and the last Posada which was sponsored by donations from Oconahuans living in the states. Enjoy and have a safe New Years celebration!
Pinatas are a huge part of many celebrations and this girl beat the heck out of a santa one! Look at him fly.
Massive amounts of food and treats are prepared for the celebration. For this one sandwiches, cupcakes, jello, punch (while I did not eat the food because I was full from dinner, I did drink punch which was a strong hibiscus tea with fruit and nuts…delicious) and other candies and sweets.
Two boys enjoying their meal after the formal celebrations are complete.