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The Student News Site of Santa Rosa Academy

The Lasso

The Student News Site of Santa Rosa Academy

The Lasso

Christmas Traditions

Christmas+gnomes+are+a+popular+decoration+people+like+to+set+up+in+their+houses.
Travel Photographer
Christmas gnomes are a popular decoration people like to set up in their houses.

Christmas is one of the most loved holidays of the year and there’s a variety of things people do to celebrate it. With less than a month left, Christmas is approaching and people who celebrate the holiday are looking forward to spending time with friends and family and doing fun activities together.

With such a big holiday and lots of excitement, people from different backgrounds have different traditions they like to do with their families or friends. A few people from Santa Rosa Academy share what their Christmas traditions are.

English 1 and theater teacher, Dr. Monica Jackson, shares what her Christmas traditions are. She says, “We go to church on Christmas Eve, we have decorations inside and outside of the house, and on Christmas day, we usually have a family adventure (last year was Disneyland, one year was the zoo, etc.). We also make tamales every Christmas now, since my husband is part Mexican and that’s what his grandmother does.”

“We have decorations inside and outside of the house.” – Dr. Jackson (LoMit)



Independent Study Advisor, Mr. Matthew Briggs, who loves Christmas, explains his traditions saying, “We have most of the normal traditions. We exchange gifts and meet up for big family dinners (which can be super busy because we also have to organize events with my wife’s family and all our siblings). Additionally, we usually volunteer for a toy giveaway back in my hometown which is a really fun time. Every year we also have a big tamale making day where the whole family gets together at my godparents house and we make an assembly line for food production. There’s lots of music and good cheer. For a number of years we also used to enter our RV in our local Christmas day parade. We’d decorate it with a National Lampoon theme, but last year we had to retire that tradition because our RV’s are no longer operational.”

“Every year we also have a big tamale making day where the whole family gets together at my godparents house and we make an assembly line for food production. There’s lots of music and good cheer.”

— Matthew Briggs

A high school Biology teacher, Ms. Brenda Perez has several traditions. She makes red, green, and pineapple tamales with her family on Christmas Eve. They talk and listen to songs like “El Burrito Sabanero” and “Pedir Posada”.

Perez describes what they do later. She replied, “After dinner we all get together to ‘Pedir Posada’, essentially we sing songs about how Mary and Joseph walked around seeking a place for Mary to give birth. We then take a baby Jesus, rock him to sleep while we sing a few more songs and then place him in the nativity scene. We pass out ‘colaciones’ which are like candy bags and then we play family games. We start opening presents at midnight and go to sleep really late. Christmas day is all about leftovers and watching Christmas movies.” Perez has many activities she does for Christmas and it sounds very fun and a full day.

“We start opening presents at midnight and go to sleep really late.” – Ms. Perez



A SRA student, Caris Lopez who loves hanging out with her family the most also shares her family’s custom which is having lots of Cuban food on her mom’s side.

She summarizes what food they have in more detail. Lopez responded, “On Christmas Eve, we go to my mom’s side, where more family and relatives are there. Since many of them are Cuban, they bring over a lot of Cuban food such as tamales (filled with pork and corn), picadillo (ground beef simmered in a tomato-based sauce), lechon asado (a whole milk piglet cooked crispy over a fire), malanga (a vegetable similar to Jerusalem artichoke), arroz con pollo (rice with chicken), chicharrones (crispy fried pork rinds), congrí (white rice and black beans), yuca fingers (yuca french fries), and tostones (plantains thickly cut, fried, pressed and refried). They also bring desserts besides the usual cakes and pies, such as flan (caramel custard pudding), arroz con leche (sweet rice pudding), pastelitos de guayaba (sweet/savory filled baked puff pastries), plátanos maduros (deep-fried plantains), and churros (deep-fried dough coated in cinnamon and sugar). I’m getting hungry just thinking about them!”

Lopez adds by sharing what she’s most excited for during the Christmas season. She explains, “I am so looking forward to seeing my mom’s side of the family this year for Christmas Eve! Sadly, I know I won’t be able to try all of their food (due to health restrictions), but I’m excited nonetheless. I’ll be more than happy to also interact with my family and have fun!”

Lopez concludes with describing her favorite Christmas memory she had.

“My favorite Christmas memory is when I was younger and I played with my cousins in the backyard all night. It felt like it lasted for hours!”



Overall, there are many different ways to celebrate Christmas. The holiday has lots of excitement with it as well after hearing from several SRA staff members and a student about their traditions, what they’re excited for, and memories they’ve had.

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About the Contributor
Ellie Cobb, Staff Writer
Ellie Cobb; a very caring, smart, and creative individual. She has been attending Santa Rosa Academy for eight years and is a Freshman this year. She puts creativity into every aspect of her life, whether it be crocheting, baking, or writing a story. In the future, she wants to go to college and possibly become a marine biologist. While working hard at school and still finding time to give her cats attention, she has maintained excellent grades. Ellie would love to make an impact as an encouraging person and a great example to those around her.
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