Ushering in Christmas

In Sweden, it is Sankta Lucia who ushers in Christmas each year. She is the next of the Gift Bearers of Midwinter, following St. Nicholas, who came in the overnight hours as St. Nicholas’s Eve on December 5 became St. Nicholas’s Day on December 6. Lucia comes to visit on the eve of her feast day, which is the 13th of December. She is a symbol of light in the darkness, and though Lucia was from Sicily, there is no shortage of darkness this time of year in Sweden, up near the Arctic Circle, and so perhaps it is only natural that the Swedes adopted her and made her their own. She will come overnight with a wreath of lit candles upon her head, bearing gifts of delicately scented saffron buns called lussekatter and strong coffee, and what better gift is there than that: a delicious golden ray of sunshine, a gift that delights the palate and that doesn’t need storing away. Perfect in its simplicity. And I will take my cue from Sankta Lucia and leave you with that lovely thought and just the briefest of blog chapters today. If you’d like to read more about St. Lucy and her history and how the Swedes pronounce her name compared to the way we Italians do, then please click on the words “Santa Lucia” in the left margin. Doing so will take you to any of the previous Convivio Book of Days chapters for this day, when we wish you saffron and light in the bleak midwinter.

Our pop-up markets are done for the year (thank you to all who came to say hello and to all who came to shop!) but we have plenty of wonderful artisan goods and specialty foods ready to ship to you by mail. Right now at our online catalog use discount code SLOWCHRISTMAS to save $10 on your $85 purchase, plus get free domestic shipping, too. Spend less and our flat rate shipping fee of $9.50 applies. If you’ve not taken a look lately at what Convivio Bookworks has to offer, I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised at what you’ll find here… plus you know we appreciate your support immensely. CLICK HERE to shop.

Oh, and an update on my mom: She is home from the hospital since last Tuesday and is getting stronger each day. She is doing well and is back to her embroidery. Thank you all for your good thoughts and prayers. We appreciate them!

Image: Lussekatter, golden with saffron, in their traditional shape.



5 thoughts on “Ushering in Christmas

  1. Guy Icangelo says:

    Wishing your mom well and a speedy recovery, John!

  2. mary beth shipley says:

    Joyful post! Praise God about your mom! Her recovery gift possible I know.

    A lovely and very well produced short (6 minute) video of St.Lucia Day in Norway. We watch this clip every year in this day. The girls’ choir is simply amazing and soooooo beautiful. Hope you can a few minute to enjoy. I have several versions of the song now but the one on video best!

  3. mary beth shipley says:

    I meant to type her recovery is the best gift possible

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