Catholic Activity: St. Barbara's Twig or Barbarazweig
December 4 was the universal feast of St. Barbara, until the revision of the General Roman Calendar. She was a saint that presented historical difficulties. Her feast is still December 4, but only celebrated locally in various areas. Here is an old German custom of St. Barbara's Twig or St. Barbara's Branch.
Another German custom is that of St. Barbara's Twig or Barbarazweig. Every member of the family puts his "St. Barbara Twig" (a small cherry or peach branch) into water so that it will have blossoms on Christmas day. The child whose branch has the most blossoms on Christmas is supposed to be Mary's favorite. The vase or glass containing the St. Barbara Twigs may be placed on the family altar.
Activity Source: How to Make Your House a Home by Rev. Bernard Stokes, O.F.M., Family Life Bureau, Washington D.C., 1955