Friday, December 19, 2008

Merry Christmas to all and to all a good three weeks...

Just in case I don't have time or internet to get back have a wonderful Christmas.

In case I have never actually said it you people lift my spirits every single day. There are blogs I visit and I feel right at home, I feel relaxed as I read them and this people is a gift. Your gift to the world, your insight, wisdom, recipes, tips hints, politics, and pure unadulterated love of your life helps everyone else love theirs a little less critically.

Keep up the chatter while I am off with my family for the next few weeks. Take loads of photos I love old Dairy's idea of the Christmas Table photo. Take good care of your gardens and your selves. Stay safe - particularly you Stewart being a cabbie at this time of year must be challenging at times.

Now all the rest of the Christmas Trivia I found just for you read it slowly over the next five days or so.


Friday : The Poinsettia

A native Mexican plant, poinsettias were named after Joel R. Poinsett, U.S. ambassador to Mexico who brought the plant to America in 1828. Poinsettias were likely used by Mexican Franciscans in their 17th century Christmas celebrations. One legend has it that a young Mexican boy, on his way to visit the village Nativity scene, realized he had no gift for the Christ child. He gathered pretty green branches from along the road and brought them to the church. Though the other children mocked him, when the leaves were laid at the manger, a beautiful star-shaped flower appeared on each branch. The bright red petals, often mistaken for flowers, are actually the upper leaves of the plant.

Saturday: Misteltoe:

Mistletoe was used by Druid priests 200 years before the birth of Christ in their winter celebrations. They revered the plant since it had no roots yet remained green during the cold months of winter.The ancient Celtics believed mistletoe to have magical healing powers and used it as an antidote for poison, infertility, and to ward of evil spirits. The plant was also seen as a symbol of peace, and it is said that among Romans, enemies who met under mistletoe would lay down their weapons and embrace.Scandanavians associated the plant with Frigga, their goddess of love, and it may be from this that we derive the custom of kissing under the mistletoe. Those who kissed under the mistletoe had the promise of happiness and good luck in the following year.

Sunday: Boxing Day

In English-speaking countries, the day following Christmas Day is called 'Boxing Day'. This word comes from the custom which started in the Middle Ages around 800 years ago: churches would open their 'alms boxe' (boxes in which people had placed gifts of money) and distribute the contents to poor people in the neighbourhood on the day after Christmas. The tradition continues today - small gifts are often given to delivery workers such as postal staff and children who deliver newspapers.

Monday: December in Japan:

Shimai Tenjin - 25 December Kitano Tenmangu Shrine, KyotoThe last festive market of the year at this large shrine in north-west Kyoto.

Kotohira-gu Shukiku - Late DecemberKotohira-gu Shrine, Kagawa PrefectureShinto shrine festival featuring kemari, a ceremonial game of kick-ups said to be a forerunner of soccer.
Namahage - 31 DecemberOga Peninsula, Akita Prefecture An ancient folk tradition still observed in villages all over the peninsula in which young men dressed in frightening namahage costumes visit the homes of children to warn them not to be lazy in the coming year.

Tuesday: Kwanzaa

Doctor Maulana Karenga, a Professor at California State University in Long Beach, California, created Kwanzaa in 1966. It is a holiday celebrated by millions of African-Americans around the world, encouraging them to remember their African heritage and consider their current place in America today. Kwanzaa is celebrated fom December 26 to January 1 and involves seven principles called Nguzo Saba: Umoja (Unity), Kujichagulia (Self-determination), Ujima (Collective Work and Responsibility), Ujamaa (Cooperative Economics), Nia (Purpose), Kuumba (Creativity), and Imani (Faith). In the Kwanzaa ritual, seven candles called Mishumaa Saba are placed in a Kinara, or candleholder, which is then set upon the Mikeka, a mat usually made of straw.
Three green candles are placed on the left, three red candles on the right and a black candle in the center, each candle representing one of the seven principles of the celebration. One candle is lit each day of the Kwanzaa celebration, beginning from left to right The colors of Kwanzaa ~ black, red and green ~ also have a special significance. Black symbolizes the faces of the African people, Red symbolizes the blood they have shed, and Green represents hope and the color of the motherland. The name itself - Kwanzaa - is a Swahili word meaning "fruits of the harvest."

Wednesday : Christmas Eve:

These are the lyrics to one of my all time favourite songs. "I Believe in Santa Claus" If the spirit of Christmas leaves you for a moment and you temporarily forget what this celebration is meant to be about just hum this to yourself and think of the words.

Merry Christmas Friends

I believe in Santa Claus
I believe in Santa Claus
I believe there's always hope when all seems lost
And I believe in Santa Claus

I believe in Santa Claus,
I'll tell you why I do
'Cause I believe that dreams and plans and wishes can come true
I believe in miracles,
I believe in magic too
Oh I believe in Santa Claus
and I believe in you

I believe in family, in country and in smiles
I believe in turnin' negatives to positives in life
I believe in lookin' farther up the farther down we get
I believe when someone hurts us we should forgive and forget
And I believe in Santa Claus
I believe in Santa Claus
I believe love should prevail at any cost
And I believe in Santa Claus

I believe in saying what you mean and meaning what you say
I believe a better attitude can make a better way
And I believe in viewing life as a journey that we're on
And lookin' at our troubles as another stepping stone
And I believe that everything in life is what it's meant to be
I believe there is a God somewhere although he's hard to see
I believe I am so therefore I should do all that I can
To be a better piece in the puzzle of God's plan

And I believe in Santa Claus
I believe in Santa Claus
I believe there's always hope when all seems lost
And I believe in Santa Claus

Let the little children sing it
I believe in Santa Claus,
I believe in Santa Claus
I believe in Santa Claus,

I believe in Santa Claus
Let the whole world sing it with us
I believe in Santa Claus,
I believe in Santa Claus
I believe in Santa Claus,
I believe in Santa Claus
I believe theres always hope when all seems lost
And I believe in Santa Claus

Merry Christmas, hugs and blessings to you all


Tracey McBride said...

Merry Christmas to you and yours DaisyMum! Thank you for all your hard work on the blog, and for sharing your life with us. Blessings and happy vacation.

jacqui jones said...

have a great holiday
and i know just what u mean about being on peoples blogs.

Lyn said...

Have a beautiful Christmas, and I'll look forward to reading more from you when you have the time.

joolzmac said...

Merry Christmas DaisyMum and Family

Have the best Christmas won't you? I used to spend my Christmases at the beach, getting all brown and slathering on the coconut oil - shocking!! Playing for hours making sand castles and looking in rock pools for crabs - bliss!

We'll be in Melbourne on Boxing Day - going to the cricket!

Have a safe, happy holiday - don't eat and drink too much ...nah, DO!!

Cheers and blessings - Joolz :)

The Old Dairy said...

O look a face to put to the name!
Have a blessed Christmas daisymum @ dad and all the daisy's.
Enjoy the sun and sea. Thanks for all the wonderfull Christmas trivia I have learned alot reading your christmas blogs. Take lots of photos.
Hugs Mandy

Anonymous said...

I believe in Santa as well, LOL. What books have you taken with you? Would love to know but then that's just me being nosey. Have a great holiday. Since I left NZ I miss my all year round garden but then I have the bonus of a traditional winter Christmas so it's not so bad. Merry Christmas.

Margaret's Ramblings said...

Sorry I didn't mean to be anonymous, it is me Margaret from

The Vintage Rose said...

Merry Christmas to you and yours! Thanks for a little to read every day if I have time of course! love & hugs

Out Back said...

Merry CHRISTmas to you and your loved ones.

Hope your break is a good one.

Happy New Year as well in case you aren't back by then.


The Muse said...

Hope you write more!