Thursday, January 1, 2015

The Christmas Pickle

Do you hang a green pickle on your Christmas tree? And why do you do this?

One story I came upon is the Medieval tale of two Spanish boys traveling home from boarding school for the holidays. Weary from travel, they stop at an inn for the night. The inn keeper, a mean and evil man, steals the boys' possessions and stuffs them into a pickle barrel. That evening, St. Nicholas stops in for a rest at the inn and becomes aware of the boys' plight. He taps the pickle barrel with his staff, and the boys are magically restored. The boys tank St. Nicholas and continue happily home for Christmas.

The tradition of trying to find the little ornament shaped like a pickle began many years ago in Laschau, Germany. Pickle ornaments were considered a special decoration by many families in Germany where the fir tree was decorated on Christmas Eve. It was always the last ornament to be hung on the Christmas tree with the parents hiding it deep among the green boughs.

When the children were allowed to view the tree, they would begin searching for the pickle ornament. The children knew that whoever first found that special ornament would receive an extra little gift left by St. Nicholas for the most observant child. If the family could not afford such extras, the picket finder was rewarded by being the first to open presents.

Production of the blown glass Christmas pickle ornament started in the 1890s.

I'd be sure that there are dozens of other Christmas Pickle Ornament stories.......... care to share yours???

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