latinos christmasThis multicultural thing gets really weird at times. I'm sure you know what I'm talking about. So instead of complaining, I'll just share the madness and please tell me: Do you go through the same?

Read more ¿Qué más?: 10 Genius Christmas tree alternatives for the holidays

Image via Corbis Images

Navidad is on Christmas Eve 1

Navidad is on Christmas Eve

Image via Corbis Images

Latinos celebrate Christmas Eve and exchange presents at midnight. I lost count of how many times my husband and I have debated the merits of waiting until Christmas morning. I really can't wait until my younger one gets older and I can go back to party on Nochebuena.

Advertisement

What's wrong with El Niño Jesús? 2

What's wrong with El Niño Jesús?

Image via Corbis Images

In many Latin American countries, the Christimas gifts are brought by Baby Jesus. My kids were overjoyed to discover that one of the perks of being Latinos is that they get gifts from Santa, their grandparents, and El Niño Jesús. Yes, there are the Three Wise Men, too!

Advertisement

Turkey tastes like nothing! 3

Turkey tastes like nothing!

Image via Corbis Images

I'm still waiting for a Latino to say the American style turkey is delicious. My husband lobbies every year to ditch the pavo and embrace el lechón o pernil. I always cook both and the typical Venezuelan hallacas. Neighbors show up with tamales, pupusas and all kinds of Latin dishes. Usually, very few touch the turkey, unless it has some Latin ingredient somewhere.

The music is, well, diverse! 4

The music is, well, diverse!

Image via Corbis Images

My Argentinian husband is not a fan of the tropical rhythms, so we negotiate, some Harry Connick Jr. carols, some traditional aguinaldos. Then a cousin shows up wondering if our Navidad has turned into a funeral. Out comes the bachata, reggaeton and by midnight everybody is singing mariachis.

Advertisement

Oh no, mami está llorando! 5

Oh no, mami está llorando!

Image via Corbis Images

There is always somebody who is not with us. My brother lives in Spain, my sister in New York. We live in Florida. It's impossible not to get nostalgic.

Who is going to Skype abuela? 6

Who is going to Skype abuela?

Image via Corbis Images

And because it's in the nature of immigrant families to spread out, the laptop or the smartphones come to the rescue. It's a parade of faces over Skype or WhatsApp.

Advertisement

Do you really have to work on Christmas? 7

Do you really have to work on Christmas?

Image via Corbis Images

Both my husband and I have to work the day before Christmas, which is sacrilegious to my family, although we are not really religious. I've been in the U.S. for 21 years now and still can't get used to it. 

Do we really have to do the Reyes Magos thing? 8

Do we really have to do the Reyes Magos thing?

Image via Corbis Images

My husband grew up with the Three Wise Men bringing him the presents, so we always do a symbolic gift to our kids, but its staring to seem much to keep up with all the traditions.

Advertisement

You watch out for the baby that can choke you 9

You watch out for the baby that can choke you

Image via Nayarit Blog

Mexicans have this great tradition of putting a baby inside this cake bake it on Three Wise Men day, on January 6th. Whoever gets the baby, has to host a tamale party on February the 2nd. Although we are not Mexicans, my girlfriends and I have been doing this for the last three years. The problem is avoiding choking on the baby.

The tree comes down way, way later 10

The tree comes down way, way later

Image via Corbis Images

If it was up to my mom, the tree and all the holiday decorations would stay up until the 2nd of February, the day of La Candelaria Virgin (yes, the day for the tamales). She is appalled, year after year, when I complained about having to wait until The Wise King Men.