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Holidays and traditions in Russia and in English-speaking countries


MASLENITSA
There are many holidays and traditions in Russia. One of them is Maslenitsa. This holiday lasts for a week. Russian people celebrate it at the end of February or at the beginning of March. They say "goodbye" to winter on this holiday. During "Maslenitsa week" we always cook pancakes.
It is a tradition to cook pancakes and eat them with fish, sour cream, caviar, honey, sugar, butter. Our family likes to invite our friends to come to see us. We buy cakes, fruits, cook pancakes.
It is interesting to eat pancakes and to have a talk. During this holiday we celebrate the beginning of spring.
Usually this holiday is celebrated in our parks. People prepare fires and burn straw scarecrows of winter.
I like this gay Russian holiday, because I like to eat pancakes and I like spring.


THE 8th OF MARCH
There are many holidays in our country, the 8th of March is one of them.
It is a happy and nice holiday. It is a good tradition in our country to give presents and flowers to women on this day. Each family celebrates this spring holiday. In the morning men go to the shops or markets to buy some flowers. They try to clean flats and help women to cook a holiday dinner.
Sons and daughters help their mothers too: they make a cake, lay the table and wash dishes after holiday dinner.
All the members of the families try to be well dressed on this day.
Some families celebrate the 8th of March going to the theatres and concerts. They buy tickets beforehand.
Others prefer to invite guests and stay at home.
There is almost the same holiday in England. It is called Mothers' Day and celebrated also in spring. Sons and daughters come and give gifts to their mothers on this day.
If it is not possible to see a mother, one can send presents and cards to her. Flowers and cakes are the traditional gifts for all mothers in England. All women try to be nice and happy on this day.


MAY DAY
The 1st of May is a spring holiday in our country. Usually it is warm during this day. The weather is fine. The trees are green. You can see some flowers in the parks and gardens. I don't go to school and my parents don't go to work on the 1st of May.
We get up at 9 o'clock and we are in a good mood. Our relatives and friends ring us up and congratulate us.
Then we have our breakfast and go for a walk.
Our house is situated not far from the park. There is a beautiful pond with white swans swimming there.
If it doesn't rain we enjoy walking in the park.
Usually we invite our friends to our Place or come to see them ourselves. We have a holiday party in the evening. My mother makes a tasty cake and biscuits for it.
At 9 o'clock we see our friends off.
After that the members of our family usually watch TV or listen to music.
We like this holiday very much, because we can meet our friends, go to the theatre or simply have a good time at home.
This holiday is celebrated in England and in the USA too. Children dance around a maypole, leave small baskets of flowers at a friend's door.


ST. VALENTINE'S DAY
This holiday is celebrated on the 14th of February by the English and the Americans. It is not a national holiday. It is necessary to go to work, banks and offices do not close. It is a day of all lovers I think it is a happy festival for young people. But it is celebrated among persons of all ages. Valentine. What is it? It is a greeting card or a little present. The cards must be coloured and gay. It is possible to send flowers, cards and candy to those you love, but usually without giving the name of the sender.
Valentine presents are packed in red heart-shaped boxes. I think St. Valentine's Day is a great present-giving anniversary for adults as well as for children.


CHRISTMAS DAY
Every country has its own customs and traditions. English people are proud of their traditions and they keep them up.
It is difficult to speak about England without speaking about its holidays. Christmas Day is among them.
All English people celebrate Christmas (or X-mas) on the 25th of December.
Christmas! What kind of holiday is it? It is the yearly celebration of the birth of Jesus Christ. It falls on December 25 by the Catholic Church and on the 7th of January by the Orthodox Church. This holiday means the beginning of the new year and the new life. English people celebrate this holiday with the evergreen tree - Christmas tree. Children put a long sock, called a Christmas stocking at the end of their beds and Santa Claus comes down the chimney to bring them presents.
Christmas Day is the greatest holiday in England. It is interesting to visit the shops before this holiday. There are a lot of nice Christmas cards and presents there. English people like this holiday very much and prepare for it beforehand. They buy presents for each other, try to send Christmas cards for their relatives and friends.
It is interesting to visit London during this holiday. There is a Christmas tree in Trafalgar Square. We can see many lights, toys and sweets all over this tree. Everywhere you can see slogans "A Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year".
The traditional English dinner on Christmas is turkey and pudding.


NEW YEAR'S DAY
There are many holidays in our country. They are: New Year's Day, Christmas, Women's Day, Victory Day, May Day and others.
I like New Year's Day, it is my favourite holiday. The 1st of January is a winter holiday and now it is the first day of the New Year.
Peter the First changed the Russian calendar in 1699. He made the 31st of December, 1699 the last day of the year. The first of January 1700 became New Year's Day.
The 1st of January is in the middle of winter. The weather is usually fine and there is a lot of snow everywhere. As the 1st of January is a holiday I don't go to school and my parents don't go to work.
We usually have got a very interesting New Year's party at school. We have got it on the 28th or 29th of December.
Our family prepares for this holiday beforehand. My father buys and brings home a beautiful New Year's tree at the end of December. Our family has a tradition to buy it. I like to decorate the New Year's tree with toys, little coloured lights, sweets and a beautiful star on the top.
My mother and grandmother prepare our holiday supper and lay the table. I make a cake.
All the members of our family clean the flat before this nice holiday and then each of us try to dress well. We like to see the New Year in at home with our relatives. They come to see us at 11 o'clock in the evening.
At 12 o'clock we are sitting at the table and we are glad to see the New Year in. We say, "Best wishes for the New Year!"
I hope that next year will be better than the last one.
The New Year's Day is always connected with our new hopes and dreams.
It is a pleasant moment to get presents on the New Year's Eve. I usually get many nice useful things from my parents and relatives. My parents put their presents under the New Year's tree.
We don't go to bed till morning, we watch TV, dance, eat tasty things and make jokes.
I enjoy this holiday very much.


APRIL FOOL'S DAY
I like many holidays in Russia, for example I like April Fool's Day.
This holiday is celebrated both in Russia and in England.
It is a day for fun. It is celebrated on the 1st of April. We like to play jokes on the 1st of April. Our jokes are harmless and the victim of them is called an April fool. It is possible to play jokes on friends, parents, relatives. Sometimes we try to play jokes on our teachers if they have a sense of humour. We say that something is wrong with her hair-do when in fact all is in order. We can say that we are not ready for the lesson but then we read texts well and retell them in a proper way. Our jokes are silly and gay that's why the teachers are not angry.
I know that this holiday first appeared in France. Now it is a very popular holiday in many countries and April Fool's jokes are played as by children as by grown-ups.
I like this holiday because it is a gay one.

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