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From the US to Finland to Japan

Bayern's global Christmas stories

Our diverse FC Bayern women's team features players from all over the world, each with their own holiday tradition. In total, 11 different nationalities represent FC Bayern. We asked five of our players to describe their unique Christmas traditions. 

Tinja-Riikka Korpela / Finland:

"What am I looking forward to around Christmas? Snow of course! And my family, who I will see for the first time since the summer break. On the menu in Finland for the holiday is Turkey, potatoes and a Christmas stew with root vegetables. And of course we have our special ginger cookies. On December 24 we get a visit from Santa Claus asking if the kids behaved during the year. If they did they get their presents! The Christmas tree is decorated with lights and ornaments, little Finish flags and most importantly, a big bright star on top!"

Mana Iwabuchi / Japan:

"For me Christmas without my family is unimaginable! Of course I'm looking forward to all the food and presents also! On the eve of December 24 we have the traditional Christmas meal where we eat chicken and cake, NOT sushi. But even bigger than Christmas for us is New Year. I live in Tokyo where we have a great fireworks show!"

Lisa Evans / Scotland:

"We celebrate Christmas on December 25. I'm most looking forward to my time with family and friends - and of course all the food! We eat so much on Christmas! There is turkey, beef, chicken with vegetables and potatoes. And lots of desserts! Everything is decorated for Christmas! We also have stockings hanging over the fire place with little presents inside. And of course we have presents waiting for us under the tree."

Gina Lewandowski / USA:

"For me Christmas is about spending time with family and going to Church before spending Christmas day together. The houses are all decorated from the outside with lights and other items. Almost every living room has a big Christmas tree. The food is very similar to Thanksgiving with a little Christmas twist! We usually have ham or roast beef along with dishes like potatoes, carrots and beans. The presents are usually opened on the morning of December 25, normally after breakkfast. In families with young kids it's sometimes done right after waking up because they can hardly contain their excitement."

Nora Holstad / Norway:

"A Christmas tree is of course a must for me during the holidays. I'm also looking forward to spending quality time with my family. On December 24 we have a big family dinner with lamb, pork or fish after which we open our presents. In many families it's also customary to hold hands and dance around the Christmas tree while singing Christmas songs."