All posts tagged: Christmas

When Ice Meets Art

Many a time I’ve come across larger than life sights in my travels — ones that cannot be given justice by words, pictures, nor moving images. You have to be there to fully live the experience. ICE! Christmas Around the World at Baltimore’s Marriott Gaylord Resort (I am still catching up on posting 2016 travels) was one of these. The ice sculptures, colorful ones and clear ones, towered over those who came to see them. Meticulously designed and curved, each sculpture was a work of art. Had I only seen them in pictures, I would not have known they were made of ice. My fiancĂ© and I went with our friends, who had their kids with us, making the trip even more fun. We were all given blue parkas to wear over our winter coats, as the temperature inside the venue was definitely below freezing. It was so cold, the 30 degree outside felt like summer in comparison. The sculptures were a representation of Christmas celebrations around the globe. Some of the displays that were …

Home(sick) for the Holidays

Christmas carols and countdowns starting the very first day of September. Holiday decorations everywhere you go: lanterns, twinkling lights and for me personally, a Christmas tree that was already up by the time I celebrate my birthday in the middle of November. Even smells coming from traditional holiday rice cakes, puto bumbong and bibingka, remind you of the season. Everyone looks forward to simbang gabi or nine mornings, midnight masses where friends and family all try to wake up early and complete all nine masses, and if you do, a blessing is believed to come your way. The Philippines has what is said to be the longest Christmas celebration in the world, beginning in September through the Feast of the Three Kings, January 6th. It’s one of the things I miss the most about the holidays — the anticipation for the most joyous time of the year. When I first moved to the US, not yet hearing holiday songs on the radio and seeing decors when they were already having daily countdowns in the Philippines …