Astronauts Get Two Christmases in Space – Seasons Greetings from Orbit 17!

Each year, the crew gets to choose when to hold their official holiday feast, during which they gather to share special delicacies beyond the scope of their normal daily rations.

Christmas comes twice to the astronauts aboard the International Space Station this year as the multi-nation crew celebrates the traditional Dec. 25 holiday as well as Russian Orthodox Christmas on Jan. 7.

Current station commander Jeff Williams of NASA is leading a crew of five, including Russian cosmonauts Maxim Suraev and Oleg Kotov, Japanese astronaut Soichi Noguchi, and American spaceflyer Timothy “T.J.” Creamer.

Kotov, Noguchi and Creamer arrived just recently, docking at the station aboard the Russian Soyuz TMA-17 spacecraft on Tuesday.

“We’re privileged this time of year to be in this unique place looking back at our planet,” Williams said in a video beamed down from the orbiting outpost. “It’s a time for us to be thinking about our family and friends… It’s also a time to look forward to the future year, finishing the assembly of the International Space Station.”

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