The Tió de Nadal is represented as a big piece of cut wood and popularly called Caga tió (Shitting log). This a character in Catalan mythology relating to a Christmas tradition widespread in Catalonia.
The form of the Tió de Nadal found in many Catalan homes during the holiday season is a hollow log of about thirty centimetres length. Recently, the Tió has come to stand up on two or four little stick legs with a broad smiling face painted on the higher of the two ends, enhanced by a little red sock hat and often a three-dimensional nose. Those accessories have been added only in recent times, altering the more traditional and rough natural appearance of a dead piece of wood.
Beginning with the Feast of the Immaculate Conception on December 8, one gives the tió a little bit to "eat" every night and usually covers him with a little blanket so that he will not be cold at night.
On Christmas day or, depending on the particular household, on Christmas Eve, one puts the Tió partly into the fireplace and orders it to defecate; the fire part of this tradition is no longer as widespread as it once was, since many modern homes do not have a fireplace. To make it defecate one beats the Tió with sticks, while singing various songs of Tió de Nadal.
The tradition says that before beating the Tió all the kids have to leave the room and go to another place of the house to pray asking for the tió to deliver a lot of presents. This makes the perfect excuse for the relatives to do the trick and put the presents under the blanket while the kids are praying.
The tió does not drop larger objects, as those are considered to be brought by the Three Wise Men (Los Reyes Magos). It does leave candies, nuts and turron. Depending on the part of Catalonia, it may also give out dried figs. When nothing is left to "shit", it drops a salt herring, a head of garlic, an onion, or it "urinates" by leaving a bowl of water. What comes out of the Tió is a communal rather than individual gift, shared by everyone present.
In Sitges (and in most town of Catalonia) there is a street children activity where by the Tio de Nadal walks down the street starting from plaça de l’Ajuntament to then continue on carrer Major, Cap de la Vila, carrer Sant Francesc, passeig Vilafranca i Oasis.
Today the Tio will show up with some Disney friends at this time schedule: 11h to 14h and 17h to 21h
posted by Paola at https://www.casitasitges.com