Way back in 2008 I wrote up my absolute favorite Christmas tradition, from Cataluna in Spain: Caga Tio. If you don’t know about this _awesome_ tradition, you really should click through and read about it:
Catalan families go into the woods and find a Christmas Log (Tio de Nadal) to bring into their home. It’s painted or otherwise decorated with a face, and wrapped in a blanket. Over the weeks before Christmas, the Caga Tio is fed sweets and other treats, in order to get him ready for the command performance on Christmas. After weeks of being fed, the Caga Tio is ready. He is then beaten with sticks by the children of the family until he poops out treats for the children, usually in the form of the Catalan treat called turron. Yes…the log poops out the children’s treats, which they then consume. Caga Tio literally translates into “Pooping Log”.
Love this tradition, mainly because it’s sounds so crazy to Americans.