Although we’ve both experienced Christmas away from home before, this was our first in Jamaica. Downtown is the place to be on Christmas Eve, where shops are open until the wee hours of the morning and the main street is packed with families, teens dressed to the nines, and last-minute shoppers.

Christmas Eve at the downtown Sav-la-Mar night market
Christmas Eve at the downtown Sav-la-Mar night market

Christmas morning we went to a sunrise church service then spent some time with our host family singing carols. I introduced them to my own family’s Christmas morning tradition of home-made cinnamon rolls, which I think went over pretty well. Since it was also Grandma’s 89th birthday, they hosted extended family and friends for a dinner party in the yard, as well as a Boxing Day party the very next afternoon. We also enjoyed Boxing Day dinner at Jedd’s supervisor’s home.

The completed nativity scene (I ran out of glue for the three kings so they'll come next year)
The completed nativity scene (I ran out of glue for the three kings so they’ll come next year)

So we kept busy and enjoyed our Christmas, despite being far from home. And we had my parents’ visit to look forward to over New Years, which turned out to be all that we could have hoped for. We plan to share a few of their observations about Jamaica in our next post. Until then…
-M