Now for my post in the procession…..
This past weekend we indulged in some serious Swedishness. I tried my best not to clap my hands and screech, play it cool, you know. But there were Lucias and tomtes and pastries everywhere you look! We went Saturday morning to the Lucia Fest in Lindsborg, Kansas a sweet and beautifully little town nestled in the midst of the Kansas prairie. It still has cobblestone streets and beautiful old houses. And there’s not a McDonald’s or Walmart to be found!
I think Lindsborg is such an interesting place, so embracing of its strong Swedish heritage and drawing Swedes,Swedish-Americans and Swedish-lovers alike to walk its quiet streets and pop into their little shops.
The Lucia Fest was a special day though, and two Lucias were featured that day— the first (and the one I got photos of) was the elementary school Lucia and Star Boy and later the high school age Lucia was crowned.
There was candle light (both real and battery operated) and lots of singing. I was impressed at how well those kids could fill up Bethany Lutheran Church there on Main Street with their little voices. Afterward, Audrey and I (and maybe even Will?) couldn’t get the Santa Lucia song out of our heads! It’s so very sweet.
Speaking of St. Lucia and sweet things, we also got a lesson in how to make proper St. Lucia buns and the different shapes they make. These buns are made with saffron, which gives them their yellow color. It is also, I learned, the most expensive spice in the world! $1,000 a pound. Yeah, that’s why a tiny vial at the grocery store is $17. Stuff ain’t cheap!
According to our instructor at the bakery, the different shapes you can make a St. Lucia Bun in includes the traditional backwards “S” shape, a Lucia Braid, the Bishop’s Locks (bottom left, looks like a beard!), Lucia’s crown (bottom right) and the Julbock (above the Lucia crown, looks like a goat’s face with horns.)
Later that day some of the teens from town paraded down Main Street in their traditional dancing clothes and put on a performance in the middle of the street. We sat down on the curb and watched the folk dancing– it looked like a lot of fun! And like it required some good upper-body strength! 😉
Of course while we were there I shopped like it was going out of style. I figured I would not be in proximity to so much Swedish stuff for a good long time, so I stocked up! I bought some straw ornaments for my little Swedish Christmas tree, a julbock (straw goat) some Carl Larsson note cards (love him!) and a bouquet of wheat to hang from my fence post for winter birds to enjoy. Will and Audrey also got some Swedish treats, and I’m so glad we all had a good time on “mama’s little Swedish holiday.”
If you’d like to learn more about the Scandinavian tradition of St. Lucia (Who is technically Italian…long story)
Please visit HERE or read Wendy’s great post about St. Lucia HERE.
And if you have a blog post you’d like to attach to the procession, please feel free to add it and a graphic to the linky tool below!
Everyone else— I hope you will follow along with the procession (see sidebar for participants!) and enjoy this lovely holiday of the good-hearted Lucia and learn some more about our blogging friends around the world!
PS: I’ve been working on a new project! And it starts today! It’s called…Scandinavian Folk! And this is it: Scandinavian Folk. Check it out!~