In Mexican culture, families don’t just celebrate the night before Christmas…they celebrate for nine nights leading up to Dec. 25. Called Las Posadas, which commemorates the Holy Pilgrimage, from Dec. 16 to the 24 families gather to dine, sing songs and, of course, break piñatas! For Mexican TV host Ana Patricia Gámez, that means getting the whole neighborhood together to celebrate.
“This year, I am excited to host my first Las Posadas celebration in my new home,” said Ana Patricia. “I just moved in about one month ago, so I have a lot of decorating to do. I really like the modern white and copper theme for my décor this year. The Threshold Copper Glass House Sculpture is a great piece that can symbolize the inn/shelter for posada. I put string lights inside for an extra-festive look. Lastly, any occasion is incomplete without the piñata! The original, traditional shape of the piñata is the six-pointed star. We fill it with traditional Mexican candy, which my daughter Guilietta loves!”
“In Mexico, we have customs like doing ‘Las Posadas de traje,’” said Ana Patricia. “In Spanish, the word “traje” has two meanings. It can mean clothing or it can mean ‘I brought.’ So in this case it jokingly means ‘Las Posadas of bringing,’ similar to a potluck where each person brings an entrée, dessert or beverage. For that reason, when they arrive we say ‘traje tamales’ (I brought tamales) or ‘traje ponche’ (I brought punch) and everyone contributes to the party.”
“I love desserts, and making cookies with my grandmother is one of my favorite traditions,” said Ana Patricia. “My sisters and I would make them with her from a very young age. We did the same with tamales. Tamales and cookies always bring back great memories, so I like to prepare them for special family celebrations like Las Posadas. With those items and a few cups of hot chocolate, my Posadas menu is complete.”
“Organization is very important,” said Ana Patricia. “You can coordinate with your guests via a group chat so that you pick a day to host when the majority of invitees are available. It’s also important that everyone pitch in, because when it’s a big party, the expenses can add up. But, the most important thing of all is to enjoy this beautiful celebration.”
Preparing for Las Posadas or other holiday traditions? Head to Target or Target.com for everything you need from grocery to décor and more!
Click here to read this story in Spanish.