As a kid I was always looking forward to Christmas time. Of course the presents were a very important reason to like Christmas however in was not only about that. Getting together with the family during Las Novenas was just as important and it was fun.
Las Novenas are a set of prayers recited during the nine days before Christmas. Starting on December 16th thru the 24th (nine days = novenas) families get together to pray, eat and sign villancicos (Christmas carols). So each day you get together in a different house to celebrate and pray in honor of Virgin Mary, Joseph and Baby Jesus.
This tradition is similar to Las Posadas in Mexico, although the food we serve in Colombia is different. We usually have buñuelos, natilla, and of course traditional Colombian appetizers (empanadas, papas rellenas, pandequesos etc)
If you get to visit Colombia during this time of the year make sure you get to observe one of the novenas. I am sure you will not be disappointed.