St John’s eve or Midsummer’s eve with kids
The Feast of Saint John closely coincides with the June solstice, also referred as Midsummer in the Northern hemisphere. The celebration of Midsummer’s Eve (St. John’s eve among Christians) was from ancient times a festival of the Summer solstice.
Christian holy day is fixed at 24 June; but in most countries the festivities are mostly held the night before, on Saint John’s Eve or Midsummer’s Day. Even if you don’t usually celebrate it, it’s a wonderful occasion to do something fun with the kids.
Fire is the most typical element associated with the Saint John’s Eve celebration. In many countries, such as Spain, bonfires are lit on the evening of 23 June for people to jump over. It´s called Saint John´s Fire.
In Spain, as part of a tradition, women collect several species of plants on St. John’s eve. They vary from area to area, but mostly include fennel, rue, rosemary, lemon verbena, mallows, laburnum, foxgloves and elder flowers.
In Galicia, in the northwest area of Spain, the collected plants are dipped in a vase with water and left outside during the night. Exposed to the light of the moon and the morning dew, the flower water is used afterwards to wash our faces.
Go at dawn with the kids to the nearest beach, forest or park and join the fun! The kids will be thrilled with the adventure.
If weather permits, why not taking a picnic, bathing suits and towels if there is water around? And instead of jumping over the bonfires (it can be dangerous for the little), you can ask them to write their wishes on a small piece of paper and burn them down.
If they are very little to wait awaken until midnight, you can enjoy Midsummer eve leaving small treats for the fairies of the garden or building fairy houses. Eat outside, cook food over an open fire and enjoy. It’ s a party!
For us it is the beginning of the Summer holidays and the name day for many of our family members. All together, adults and kids, celebrate this day with joy!.
We love to dinner BBQ, roasted sardines and Padron peppers, a delicious type of green chilly peppers. These peppers are not specially spice, although sometimes there is one able to burn you down. It is a funny thing to discover who is the unlucky one chosen by fate. Let water near, you will need it!
I love traditions, I think it is important to involve our kids and teach them to keep them alive. They will be part of their best memories of their childhood.
We wish you a happy St. John’s eve or Midsummer eve!
Let´s go and celebrate that summer is here! And please, remember to keep an eye on your kids all the time, the fire is dangerous.