Deck the Halls…and Cubes…and Desks

Every year around the beginning of December, a magical transformation begins in Promega offices in Madison and around the world. In Madison, even as our own Promega cookie elf is busily baking the last of her Holiday treats, employees are donning their own elf hats and bedecking our halls and cubes with their own form of Holiday magic.

Different teams put different spins on their decorating; from an all-out coordinated effort, to individualized decorations that reflect the personality of the decorator . It is fun to see how different areas get into the Holiday spirit.

Many departments or groups have their own holiday tree. Some of our web developers and designers put their own creative twist to decorating their “tree” using things they had at their desks. Our SAP group has a more traditional tree, with Jolly old St. Nick giving a welcoming glow. Our Technical Services Scientists tree is topped with a red and green elf hat (complete with ears).

Each year our Integrated Solutions group has a contest of some sort. This year they were given Styrofoam balls to use to create their Holiday decorations. The results were creative and varied.

Although the festive atmosphere is widespread throughout the company, rumor has it there is at least one or two “Grinches” among us.

No, we haven’t caught them stuffing any of the trees into bags. In fact we are certain that their hearts are already just the right size.

Two years ago we shared some of the many traditional celebrations enjoyed by Promega employees from around the world.

When asked about how they decorate their offices, Hans, the marketing manager from our Swedish Branch, offered this response:

“Currently we have barely 6 hours of day light in Stockholm – up north in Sweden it is dark almost 24 hours. Our Christmas celebrations are Christian celebration, Christmas also is a real fest of lights. Christmas in Swedish is Jul – referring to the old Yultide (Yule time celebrations).

We more than welcome the white snow as it lights up the dark December days. In the office we burn the fireplace and candles, and the rooms are decorated with Christmas ornaments.

The Christmas tree has “candles”, shiny glass balls and it is topped with a big star. All symbols to celebrate the upcoming winter solstice, as the Nordic people are longing for the return of the light. In some trees you find typical Swedish ornaments like the small Dala häst (Dalarna horse)

We count down to Christmas with our Advent calendar, every day a new window opens and gives us a small treat. Anyway, December is full of treats!

Every Advent Sunday we drink mulled wine with raisins and almonds, and decorate our windows with stars and lights. And we eat Julbord – a table full of homemade delicacies like pickled herring, salmon, ham, meatballs, etc. etc. etc.  We eat cinnamon, Saffran and cardamom buns, tangerines, gingerbread cookies and marzipan stuffed pastry.   December 13, the Nordic countries celebrate Lucia, who brings in a small parade the light into the darkness at 7 am. She wears a crown with candles on her head, and traditional Christmas songs are performed in schools, churches, hospitals, malls, etc. Saffron rolls are the treat of the day.”

For many of us, this season is about spending time with friends and family. It is a time for giving gifts and showing our love and appreciation to the people who matter most in our lives. We reflect back on the year past and to look forward to the coming New Year with hope and excitement. Our North American Branch has a wall inviting everyone to end the year on a positive note by sharing something good that is happening in their lives.

We hope that the season is happy, peaceful and enjoyable for everyone. Happy Holidays from all the Promega Bloggers, and we will see you in the New Year.

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Kelly Grooms

Kelly Grooms

Scientific Communications Specialist at Promega Corporation
Kelly earned her B.S. in Genetics from Iowa State University in Ames, IA. Prior to coming to Promega, she worked for biotech companies in San Diego and Madison. Kelly lives just outside Madison with her husband, son and daughter. Kelly collects hobbies including jewelry artistry, reading, writing and knitting. A black belt, she enjoys practicing karate with her daughter as well as hiking, biking and camping.

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