Merry Christmas!

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I feel fortunate to be back at home for Christmas in Canada this year.

It feels a bit different because it is the second year Nanny is not with us but it reminds me that Christmas really is all about family.

Two years ago my sister wrote 10 reasons she would miss me over the holidays, including two reasons she wouldn’t miss me! Last year I shared my favourite Christmas carols.

But probably one of my favourite posts was Would you buy a $500 Turkey? Aka Have you met Andres?

It was around the time that I finally realized that I may think everything is inexpensive in Latin America but it wasn’t for locals.

I was enjoying eating out and having a good time, all the things they couldn’t afford to do.

Having turkey isn’t a tradition of Christmas in Ecuador. Actually neither is Santa or any of our North American customs.

But because of television and movies it has become one and there is growing pressure for families to have turkey – but the conversion rate of what they make monthly means it would be like us paying $500 for a turkey.


That is why you can buy things like turkey in a can. It is still expensive because it is imported from Spain. It is only 65% turkey meat and that is frightening.


Those days in Ecuador really changed me.


And so today as you get flustered by how busy the day can be, take a moment to be thankful that you are surrounded by friends, family and a turkey that is likely 100% turkey meat.

Feliz Navidad, Joyeux Noël, Merry Christmas. 



Join the Conversation

  1. I made ham! That’s what I did in Belize so I did it here also. I’m not a big turkey fan.

    1. Ayngelina Author says:

      Well you obviously haven’t had my turkey then.

  2. Micamyx|Senyorita says:

    Maligayang Pasko from the Philippines! 😀

  3. Chrystal McKay says:

    Merry Christmas to you too!

  4. Kristin Addis says:

    Must be the same thing for the locals in the countries I’ve been to in Southeast Asia. Though I didn’t celebrate Christmas this year and made sure I got the heck away from it, I can appreciate your words and experience in Ecuador.

    If Nana is your grandmother, it was my second Christmas without her too, after losing her pretty close to the date 2 years ago… maybe that’s why I didn’t want to think about Christmas this year, but family is important. Absolutely important.

    1. Ayngelina Author says:

      The first Christmas I spent away was in 1999 and I was living in the Philippines. Fortunately much like Ecuador it didn’t look like Christmas at all (no snow) so it didn’t bother me as much but I still really missed my family.

  5. A belated Merry Xmas and happy holidays to you too Ayngelina. I never saw the turkey in a can when I was working in Ecuador, but…never looked for it either! I do miss having popcorn with my soup though, love that Ecuadorian tradition!

    1. Ayngelina Author says:

      That year I ended up eating shrimp for Christmas. I just couldn’t justify eating expensive turkey in a can.

  6. Oof, only 65% turkey meat in that can?!? So many reasons to feel lucky this holiday season!

    1. Ayngelina Author says:

      What is the remaining 35% anyway???

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