Christmas is everyone’s favorite time of year. The family, the gifts, the gatherings, the food (the time off of work!). But did you know that the current incarnation of Santa Claus was only adopted in the 19th century? Even though the jolly, fat man has been around since the Middle Ages, it was the red suit and beard that finally gave him an identity, thanks to marketing.
Early on, gift-giving was viewed as too tightly connected to Paganism, so much so that early Christmas celebrations were devoid of gift-giving. However, many gift-givers likened the idea of giving gifts to one another to the Magi, those who gave gifts to baby Jesus. After that, gift-giving became a part of the majesty that is Christmas.
Christmas carols haven’t always been a part of Christmas. Again, much like the image of Santa Claus, many of the carols that we are familiar with originated in the early nineteenth century. Soon after many churches adopted them and the rest is history.
If you had been born in England about hundred years ago your family would have had the traditional dinner of pig’s head for Christmas dinner. Yep, pig’s head with mustard sauce. The tradition soon faded away after modern food preparation techniques led to ham, much to the delight of British people throughout England.
Did you know that you can eat your Christmas tree? Most parts of the evergreen tree (not a plastic tree !) is rich in vitamin C and full of fiber. Hey, it’s just as close to a vegetable as any other green. And it sure beat’s pig’s head and mustard.
Ever heard of the Yule log? Burning the Yule log can be traced back to Scandinavia where burning it was thought to bring with it good luck for the entire next year, and remnants of the log were saved as a reminder of the luck when times were tough. It was such a popular practice that people even used to throw pieces of the log into their wells to make it safer to drink.
Thanks for reading and we hope you have a Merry Christmas!