Tag Archives: christmas traditions

Getting Ready for the Holidays

By Amy Knapp

Do ahead what can be done ahead! A lot of staging and assembly can be done well ahead of the official decorating.

Amy KnappAfter Halloween:

Try to take one or two projects per week to prepare. Start early with lists: gift to purchase, house projects, decorating, baking, and entertaining.

Keep the holiday list separate by merging them with your master weekly to do list.
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National Eggnog Day

EggnogNot only is today Christmas Eve but it’s also National Eggnog Day! Makes sense, since making a batch or two of eggnog is a common Christmas Eve tradition.

Eggnog is a popular holiday drink in the U.S. and Canada and is made with milk and/or cream, sugar, raw eggs (beaten), spices (particularly nutmeg) and (optionally) liquor, such as brandy or rum. It’s also very tasty…and very high in fat and sugar. Seriously. You might want to pass it up this year if you’re cutting back the calories. However, you can still enjoy eggnog without the high amount of fat and cholesterol by making or purchasing  eggnog with skimmed, low fat, soy or rice milk.

Celebrate National Eggnog Day by making eggnog for your family! (But we won’t be disappointed if you go with commercial eggnog.)

Eggnog drink recipes:

Eggnog

Eggnog Drinks from Allrecipes.com

Alcoholic/Non-alcoholic/Easy/Healthier Eggnog Recipes

If you want to go all out on National Eggnog Day, whip up one of these eggnog-based desserts:

Golden Eggnog Cupcakes

Easy Holiday Eggnog Muffins

Cranberry Eggnog Muffins

Eggnog Drink and Dessert Recipes

 

Note: Commercial eggnog does not contain raw eggs. However, when making homemade eggnog (which includes raw eggs), use pasteurized eggs. Some recipes may also instruct you on how to cook the eggs for additional safety.

 

Sources: holidayinsights.com, punchbowl.com, wikipedia.org
Photo Source: Konstantin Ryabitsev, CC-BY-SA-2.O, via Wikimedia Commons
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Christmas

Christmas tree ink04What is Christmas?

A religious and commercial holiday with both religious and secular traditions, Christmas is a Christian holiday that celebrates the birth of Jesus Christ. However, many Christmas celebrations and traditions have their roots in pre-Christian winter festivals. Learn more about the history behind Christmas by clicking here.

When is Christmas?

December 25 of each year in the Gregorian calendar. Following the Julian calendar, Orthodox Christmas falls on or near January 7.

How do people celebrate Christmas?

As a federal holiday – in the U.S., Australia, Canada and the United Kingdom – government offices, schools, post offices and other stores and businesses close for the day. Churches hold special Christmas Eve and Christmas Day services that include singing Christmas hymns and reading scripture of the birth of Jesus. The most  popular Christmas tradition is exchanging gifts with friends and family and, for children, waking up early Christmas morning to see what Santa Claus left for them under the Christmas tree. Other Christmas celebrations and traditions include setting up and decorating a Christmas tree in the home, putting up Christmas  lights and decorations inside and outside of the home,  enjoying a festive meal with friends and family, watching Christmas movies, making (and eating) Christmas cookies and singing Christmas carols.

Find Christmas crafts, activities, stories and recipes as well as gift, party and music ideas here.

 

Sources: history.com, timeanddate.com
Photo Source: HikingArtist.com, CC-BY-2.0, via Wikimedia Commons
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Go Caroling Day

December 20 is Go Caroling Day!

Celebrate the holidays and spread some Christmas cheer by singing your favorite Christmas carols with your family and friends. Find a list of popular Christmas carols here.

Never been caroling before? Click here for caroling tips and guidelines! Though caroling is an activity that is usually performed for an audience, such as your neighbors, you can still create the spirit of Christmas caroling by throwing a caroling party at home.

Did You Know…that caroling is an ancient tradition whose origins have nothing to do with Christmas? Read more about the history of caroling.

 

Sources: holidayinsights.com
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Look for an Evergreen Day

December 19 is Look for an Evergreen Day!

If you opt for a real Christmas Tree in your household, this may be your last chance to find the perfect pine, spruce, or fir. If you have already tracked down your tree, then this can be a day to simply admire those evergreens you pass on your daily commute.

The tradition of decorating a tree for Christmas dates back to 16th century Germany. The town would gather to decorate a single tree in the market square with candles and wax ornaments. Nowadays, you can find a decorated tree in almost every house that celebrates Christmas and the decorations are a bit more ornate.

If you have been procrastinating, today is the perfect push you need. Go Look for an Evergreen!

Sources: National Whatever Day, The Ultimate Holiday Site

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National Cookie Day

Ann Gordon plate of cookiesWith Christmas right around the corner, it’s time to start baking some holiday cookies. Luckily, National Cookie Day falls on December 4, giving you a head start on your holiday baking.

Of course, we realize that the cookies you make today won’t last til Christmas. So think of National Cookie Day as a practice run: bake a batch of all your favorite cookies, ask your friends to do the same, then invite everyone over for a cookie tasting. Indulge your sweet tooth while discovering new cookie recipes to add to your holiday spread!

Just want to make some cookies? Click here to find recipes for almost every kind of cookie you can think of!

Did You Know…that cookies were once called “little cakes”? Find out why and learn more about the history of cookies by clicking here.

Happy National Cookie Day!

 

Sources: punchbowl.com, theultimateholidaysite.com, thenibble.com
Photo Source: Ann Gordon, CC-BY-SA-2.0, via Wikimedia Commons
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