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I know that there are a lot of Greek traditions and some of it depends on where in Greece you or your family is from. I thought I would share mine, I want to hear yours!

** Singing Greek Christmas songs together and going out caroling
** Agios Vasselios - "Greek Santa Claus"
** Melamakarona (Can't wait! It's almost time to start making them!

What are yours?
Not exactly a local tradition, but in the past children in Greece used to sing carols, while holding a ship model. To be honest, I am not aware of the symbolism behind that...
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Not exactly a local tradition, but in the past children in Greece used to sing carols, while holding a ship model. To be honest, I am not aware of the symbolism behind that...

I have heard of this ship tradition and I am not sure about it either. I think it's called "Karakavi" and people decorate their boats with lights, and if they don't have a boat, they decorate models of boats. I am not clear on why - maybe it has something to do with the fishing traditions in Greece?

Also, my family actually has a tradition of making Baklava! But, I track down melamakarona from a local Greek bakery.
Not exactly a local tradition, but in the past children in Greece used to sing carols, while holding a ship model. To be honest, I am not aware of the symbolism behind that...
Intriguing - I am going to ask about it in another thread. I have heard about it but don't know much...

Tips for Learning and Teaching Greek

I know how to speak Greek okay, but I am not great at it. I want to brush up on my skills, and I also want to teach some of my family members. I am good enough at it to the learn the basics. I am looking for advice, but I've also compiled some ideas:

1. Spend an extended period of time in Greece

There’s no better way to learn Greek than to immerse yourself in the language and culture of Greece. If you have the opportunity, consider spending an extended time in Greece, studying or working, taking a sabbatical, or just exploring the country. Living in Greece can help you understand the nuances of the language, such as the different accents, dialects, and slang that are used. You’ll also have the chance to practice your Greek with locals, watch Greek TV or films, and read Greek books or newspapers. I would imagine this is the best way to learn fast!

2. Use a language program

If you can’t travel to Greece or you prefer a more structured approach to learning Greek, consider using a language program. There are many language programs available online or in your local area, ranging from self-paced courses to interactive classes. Some popular language programs for Greek include Rosetta Stone, Duolingo, and Pimsleur. From what I understand these are all great options and I can learn at my own pace.

3. Take classes

Taking classes is another excellent way to learn Greek, especially if you prefer face-to-face interaction and feedback. You can find Greek language classes in community colleges, universities, language schools, or private tutors. Taking classes can help you improve your Greek skills, such as listening, speaking, reading, and writing. You’ll have a teacher who can guide you through the learning process, answer your questions, and give you homework or assignments that challenge you. You’ll also have classmates who share your passion for Greek and can practice with you.

4. Find ways to immerse yourself outside of Greece

Even if you can’t go to Greece or attend classes, you can still immerse yourself in Greek in your daily life. One way is to find Greek-speaking communities or events in your area, such as cultural centers, festivals, or meetups. You can also use online resources to connect with Greek speakers, such as language exchange websites, social media groups, or chat apps. Listening to Greek music, watching Greek videos or podcasts, or reading Greek literature can also help you familiarize yourself with the sounds and patterns of the language.

Honestly, I plan to try all 4 - whatever I can do. I think it will all help.

Greek Name Days Celebrations

I have been encouraging my family and friends to let me know when their name days are. I know for my immediate family, of course, but I want to start honoring name days in addition to birthdays like they do in Greece.

But aside from wishing someone Chronia Polla, or happy name day, what else can we do? How do people in Greece celebrate? Is it much like a birthday?

Where did plate smashing come from?

When Greeks feel happy and are dancing and have a good time, they've been known to smash plates. I've seen it! It's not just a tourist thing - but they don't do it much because I am sure they won't want to smash their expensive dish wear.

I was just at a wedding and they had purchased plates to smash - so basically they were cheap throwaway plates that actually smashed really well. I almost wonder if they were made for the purpose...

It got me thinking - where did this tradition come from? Does anyone know?

Greek Easter Family Traditions

I am curious what your family traditions are for Greek Easter. I know lent hasn't even started yet, but I've started doing some planning to make sure my family has all of its traditions all set. Sometimes it takes me a while to find ingredients for some of the foods I serve, etc.

Of course we spend Holy Week in church. We do our best to fast during Lent, and once Easter comes, it's all about serving our traditional dishes. This year I might spend part of lent in Greece to visit some religious sites.

What do you guys all do?

Greek family customs - Personal related

Hi there. Not sure if this is the right forum, but I've got some personal issues with my family. My brother in law (73) is Greek. His wife (my sister) is not. They have a daughter (34) (my niece) that "sides" more with the Greek culture.

My niece has never left home, and has never paid rent or paid for food. She's been mostly jobless although she has worked a few jobs here and there. My sister is fed up with it, but when she confronts my BIL, he says "Greeks don't do that". And what he is implying (I guess) is that Greeks take care of their family in this way.

My BIL had a stroke many years ago and his health is declining rapidly. I am advocating for an attendant to come into the house every day and get him dressed, showered, make him meals, etc. My sister is 73 and she can't physically handle this. She also doesn't want to devote every waking moment to keeping an eye on him. When she suggests an attendant, again, "Greeks don't do that".

Now I'm pretty sure this is all BS, but would love to get some input from any Greek people in this forum.
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