Synonymous with New Year’s Eve, Auld Lang Syne imbues nostalgia while evoking a sense of belonging and fellowship.
A secretive gift-giver that provides treats and treasures to children in the night has many iterations around the globe. The variations range from a goat to an angelic creature, with the most well known being a jolly elf clad in red.
No era in history has influenced how we celebrate Christmas, quite as much as the Victorians. Before Queen Victoria’s reign, Christmas celebrations were bleak, or non-existent. Christmas trees went undecorated, Christmas cards not sent, and not many knew of the Jolly Ole Saint Nick. In the same right, the process of giving and receiving gifts was not a Christmas tradition.
To tell of Easter is to speak of hope.
As well it should be. For the holiday celebrates a promise of new life and the resurrection of one—that of Jesus Christ. His story unfolds from each pulpit on Easter Sunday, but also the days leading up.
The Thursday before hosts what’s known in England as the Royal Maundy. Each sovereign tailors the event in some way. During Queen Victoria’s reign, she determined the event be held at Westminster Abbey. It is there that she addressed the congregation and upheld the tradition of distributing something much more precious than candy. . .
‘Twas a time before Christmas.
Unimaginable as it may seem, the holiday brought little more than a glad tiding or cup of good cheer. To unearth the origins of time-honored traditions held today requires a return to Victorian Christmases.
. . . To precisely one in particular. . . that of Ebenezer Scrooge.
A little Christmas book.
Selling out in three days’ time, Charles Dicken’s “little Christmas book” became a classic straightaway. Of a myriad of Things You Might Not Know About A Christmas Carol, its message of giving fostered convictions in the rich and inspired the classes from merely observing the holiday to celebrating it.
Speaking of old Ebenezer. . . .
Someone would walk up the stairs every night, walk down the long hallway, look into each room, and then go into the room at the end. My mom always kept the door to that room closed and she stored things like Christmas presents there. She never explained to my brother and me why we shared a room and couldn’t have that one. Continue reading “A Haunting in Niagara, New York”
Two decades have passed since Diana first saw in a dream the perfect white house with pillars. The very next day as she took a drive through town, she turned onto a street she was unfamiliar with and was astonished to see the house from her dream.
Before long, she had moved into the two-story house, but discovered that she was afraid to go upstairs. Something about the top floor gave her the creeps. “It was as if it were haunted,” she said. Continue reading “Still Cooking”