There are many family traditions for Christmas Eve, and these vary according to ethnicity, religion, region, and ages and interests of family members. In the US, families with small children oftentimes have a special bedtime ritual involving setting out cookies and milk for Santa Claus—and carrots for his reindeer. Churches usually hold special services with candlelight and music—midnight mass is a Catholic tradition. Eating usually comes after the service, and some cultures have specific meals or foods associated with this day.
Italian Christmas Eve Dinner, for example, features an odd number of fish dishes.
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