Many traditions that are part of our Christmas season celebration did not originate in the United States. Here are three that came to us from afar.
Mistletoe was associated with peace and friendship in ancient Scandinavia, and that probably accounts for the custom of ‘kissing under the mistletoe.’
Christmas Cards started in 1843 in England when John Calcott Horsely painted a card at the behest of Sir Henry Cole who was a leading cultural figure in Victorian England and later became the director of the Victoria & Albert Museum. The card depicted a family feasting with the words ‘A Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year’ penned under the portrait.
Poinsettia plants, which decorate our homes, offices, and shops throughout the season, were brought to America in 1829 by the diplomat Joel Poinsett from Mexico, where he served as a special envoy and later as ambassador. The plant is known as the ‘Flower of the Holy Night.” Poinsett was also involved in the founding of the Smithsonian Institution.
How Time Flies
Just for fun, which is a part of the holiday season or at least it should be we thought we would share a bit of quirky trivia which we know The Three Stooges would appreciate!
We all know a day is 24 hours long. But for Santa Claus, his one day of delivering presents covers 31 hours. How can this be? Well, maybe Larry, Moe and Curly miss-set all the clocks. Or if Santa Claus were to make his rounds traveling from east to west, his ‘day’ would be 31 hours due to the rotation of the earth and the movement through the various time zones. Nyuk! Nyuk! Nyuk!