Dolls of the Laplands

Relationship: Child of im/migrant
Two bowling-pin shaped Laplandish dolls
Two bowling-pin shaped Laplandish dolls

Different Cultures, across multiple nationalities, combined, are what make up the US, and its identity. Each of us is a part of this identity, my dad being a contributor and the focal point of this story. Being stuck in a country with no hope of real progression was his parents reason for emigrating from Finland to Canada, and from Canada to the US; this process was a grueling one. Abrupt changes will come hand-in-hand while switching countries, and to adjust to the new environment is difficult. This is where traditions help; being able to carry around a fragment of your old country, and its customs, can make you feel much more at home even while being in a strange environment. My dad, and his parents before him, would celebrate a few special holidays from Finland. They celebrated a different version of Christmas, with the focus being Christmas Eve rather than Day, and Santa knocking on the door at nighttime. Over time, this tradition has fallen to the wayside, primarily due to logistical issues, however; we still have a few “totems”, that still hold its memory. These totems are two dolls from Lapland; while not expensive or collectible, they still hold great value: sentimental value. They are reminiscent of my childhood christmas, and the time I spent in Finland. When you see a tradition you would consider “weird”, rather than criticize it, ask about it; “What was the origin of it?”.

Place(s): Finland, Canada, United States

– LL

Relationship:  Child of im/migrant Child of im/migrant