Our cast and creative team of A CHRISTMAS CAROL share their holiday traditions. What are yours?
Sasha Neufeld, apprentice
"Well, my family and I celebrate Hanukkah, and since college, I haven't been home for Hanukkah - except for last year when it was at the same time as Thanksgiving. And typically for Hanukkah what we would do is we have about three different Hanukkia's that we would light with all my siblings. We would each light our own Hanukkia and sing the candle blessings, and then my mom would force me to sing Hanukkah songs. We had these songs sheets that she would pull out that had all the Hanukkah songs on it, and we would sing the entire sheet front and back. And when I was really young, my mom would hide presents in the house, and we would have to find them after we lit the candles, and that was really exciting. But it was usually always really practical things, like one year it was a CD holder or pencils... stuff like that. It was never anything really big, but it was always a lot of fun to find treasures."
Adriana Bordea, apprentice
"My BFF and I get ugly Christmas sweaters and go to JC Penney Portrait Studios and get our pictures done. Our goal is to be as ridiculous as possible, with props galore. This is our third year, and we found some awesome matching Grinch shirts from Value Village for $4 each! We have already talked about what we are going to do for our tenth year: we're thinking blinged out sweaters with diamonds."
"I have fun with family when I can. And I love spending time with my niece and nephew, and so anytime I get to spend time with them, I say crazy things to them that they think is hilarious. Like my niece, she likes to make me promise that I'll get a pink bathing suit like hers, and the next time we get together I have to wear it and dress in a little tu tu and stuff, and Ill tell her 'You want me to get one for your Daddy, too?' And shes like 'Yes, yes, yes, yes!' She gets all excited, so there's nothing I like to do, it's just when I do spend time with family, I really enjoy it."
La'Tevin Ellis, apprentice
"Back at home, at 12:01 everyone rushes to the presents or to the gifts, and we open them up and play, usually for like a good hour or two hours until we pass out. Then, we wait till the morning time, and in the morning we usually have Christmas dinner, which my grandmother and my mother prepare, all the guys set the table. There's usually NBA basketball games going on so hopefully you see my Lakers on Christmas day. So we watch the games, we eat, play with gifts, make sure the kids don't tear the house down with their new remote control car, and then we go out and see our other family around town."
Andy Haftkowycz, apprentice
"Whenever I'm with family, which I probably won't be able to do this year, there are usually kids involved and our favorite thing to do is to have all the kids get in the car and drive around or have all the kids get in the basement cause Santa needs to come. It's always like you're waiting for Santa Claus downstairs, and I'm Ukrainian so we all sing Ukrainian Christmas Carols when that's happening. And in recent years, 'cause I'm older and have a beard now, I get to be Santa Claus, so I get to hang up stairs with the adults, drink some beers and arrange all the presents around the Christmas tree because we always celebrate Christmas Eve with the presents. It always goes until like three or four in the morning, and then we all get up really late on Christmas day and just pig out. We always have stuff called Kyuchya, a poppy dish. I don't even know how to make it. It was always my grandma or my mom and dad that made it. But it's delicious, though not for everybody. Some Ukrainians I know are like 'I'm not going ten miles near that stuff.'"
Jake Simonds, apprentice
"One would be that my mom is an avid quilter, and when I was just a baby she made a quilted advent calendar in the shape of a Christmas tree. It has 25 spots for ornaments and each day my sister and I would alternate in putting up ornaments, but then often my mother would take the first day because 25 is an odd number, so she would have the first day. And my sister would often confuse me into not being the one to put up the Santa on Christmas Day because she was the older sibling."
"My family makes Lefse. My family is Norwegian, and Lefse is this traditional potato pancake that you make with all these special tools, an iron, and you have a little wooden flipping rod thing, and you fill it with butter and sugar and cinnamon and you roll it up and you eat it. And I've made it every year since I was born."
Maeve Z. O'Connor
"I certainly hope Christmas Carol becomes a holiday tradition. Oh I know, it's only really happened two or three times, maybe four, but I hope to make it a tradition. Three or four times, three or four years, that's a lot when you're only 13. My best friend and I wake up really early and then just video chat and get all jacked up before our parents wake up, then we're like 'we gotta go, they're up, ahhhhh!' I hope to do that again this year."
"Having lived away from home for several years, Skyping on Christmas morning tends to be my big tradition now. My friends in Portland and I are heading towards making a Christmas Day hike in Forest Park our own tradition now. One tradition from childhood is making Six Cup Salad, an ambrosia (marshmallows, fruit salad, etc.) that was always my responsibility to make!"