Locals at the Aisling Center, in the Bronx, celebrating Christmas.

IrishCentral visited the Aisling Center in the Bronx, New York, in 2012 and joined the older Irish immigrants enjoying a Christmas dinner together. We asked them to tell us their memories of celebrating Christmas in Ireland before they emigrated to the US.  Their memories of Ireland at Christmas recall old traditions such as the “wren boys” singing carols, to what presents Santa would bring. Back then, if you were lucky, you would get a toy or some fruit, and of course, Santa had to deal with many more hand me downs as dolls passed from little girl to little girl. 

For the most part, their memories are of family togetherness, mucking in and having fun at home, what Christmas is all about! Decorations and to be made and everybody pitched in with the cooking. 

As we get ready for the occasion and the crazy shopping season, it's sometimes nice to sit down and remember that it wasn't always the fancy gifts that ensured you had a great Christmas but the people you shared those gifts with. This video will remind you of just that, as well as all the old traditions you may have let slip. 

Do you have an old Irish tradition that you and your family carry out religiously every Christmas? Let us know about it in the comments section, below. 

Share your favorite Christmas memories with us in the comments section. 

Do you have an Christmas tales you'd like to share with IrishCentral? Share them with us at [email protected].

* Originally published in December 2012.