Almost all people worldwide anticipate Christmas Day; even some non-Christians join in the celebration. Children are the happiest revelers as they look at the Christmas tree, gifts piled underneath, delicious aroma from the kitchen, the sound of Christmas carols and the presence of family and friends.
Origin of Christmas
Long ago, the Roman culture already honored December 25 as Saturnalia, the winter solstice. This tradition revered Saturn, the god of agriculture, and they held lavished fete with merriment, feasting, drinking and gift giving. In the 4th century, Rome was converted and Christianity became the state religion. The Roman church changed Saturnalia to a Christian holiday commemorating the birth of Jesus Christ. Since then, Christmas became a popular December holiday celebrated by large numbers of people all around the world.
Christmas tree often comes from evergreen pine or fir tree, decorated with lights and colorful ornaments plays key role in Christmas festivities. Fresh cut, from pots or artificial, the tree displayed indoor and outdoor. Although a Christian traditional symbol, the tree in the modern times has largely secular and even commercial.
One of the main reasons for the gift-giving and receiving presents at Christmas is a reminder of the gifts given to newly-born Jesus Christ by the three Wise Men from the East. They were: Frankincense a perfume used by Jews in their worship, Gold was a sign of Kingship and Myrrh was used to anoint the dead. These are apt symbols why Jesus Christ came into this world.
AKA Father Christmas, Kris Kringle, Saint Nicholas, Saint Nick, Kris Kringle or simply Santa is a well-loved legendary figure in the Western Christian culture. He is pictured as a big fat man in a red suit and white beard bringing gifts to the homes of well-behaved children on Christmas Eve and early morning hours on the 25th.
Christmas carol is also called noël; they are songs or hymns whose lyrics are on the theme of Christmas. It is sung on Christmas itself or during the surrounding holiday season by a group of singers to bring Christmas cheers around the neighborhood.
Traditional Christmas Services
Christmas Eve midnight mass, a Roman Catholic churches tradition is celebrated while candlelight services are held by Protestants late in the evening. These holy rites are attended by families prior to Christmas Eve repast.
Families often hold Christmas reunions during Christmas Day lunch or dinner where they greet each other and exchange gifts. Tables are laden with stuffed turkey, mashed potatoes, gravy, cranberry sauce, and colorful veggies. Other alternative as main dish is roast beef, or ham. For dessert, pumpkin or apple pie, Christmas pudding, or fruitcake are favorite. Of course, drinks are served in abundance.
Activities on Christmas Day
- Attend a religious service
- Catch a show
- Choose a nontraditional stage show
- Explore the Museum
- Go ice skating in the park
- Go bowling.
- Play tourist
- See a movie
- Snap a picture in front of the tree
- Spend time with animals in the zoo
- Stare at the holiday windows
- Take a stroll
- Visit a friend
Christmas is for kids
Kids welcome Christmas without inhibitions. They behave well to get Santa Claus presents, write him letters for what they want and leave him cookie s by the fireplace as midnight repast. They believe in the flying reindeer, or the fat man wearing a red suit climbing down chimneys. For them, Christmas is magic time that they wrapped and keep in their chest of beautiful childhood memories.