This is an exciting month for many people around the world! I hope
you will find some interesting facts about holly or other news here,
along with some important dates to remember. My Mom told me that
she and Dad liked to decorate the mantel over the fireplace, with yew
I always feel there is a sense of wonder, magic and celebration in the air!
2nd~ New Moon
“To have a project prosper, start it during the new moon.” Old Farmer’s
Hanukkah which started on November 28, 2013 lasts eight days. This
would mean that (I think) it would end on December 5, 2013, counting
the beginning day.
7th~ Pearl Harbor Day
Remembering the bombing of Pearl Harbor and how sad we felt when
our own “territory” was attacked.
12th~ National Poinsettia Day
While in Mexico, U.S. Minister Joel Roberts Poinsett (who died on this day
in 1851), came across a striking native plant. He later introduced the
plant in the United States. It became known as a Poinsettia, named in
his honor for bringing it to our attention. We love the bright pink, red
and white flowers using them to decorate around our house for the
holidays. Mom loves the pink ones the best.
17~ “Full Cold Moon”
“When ’round the moon there is a “brugh” (sounds like “bruff”)
The weather will be cold and rough.” Old Farmer’s Almanac, 2013.
Wright Brothers Day is also celebrated on Dec. 17th.
21st~ Winter Solstice
After today, the days get lighter meaning there will be more daylight
from this day onward. Celebrate by sowing lettuce seed in a pot. Or
you could try your hand at planting a window herb garden.
Place in a sunny kitchen window.
“The holly’s up, the house is all bright,
The tree is ready, the candles alight.”
Written by German composer, Carl August Peter Cornelius (1824-74).
26th~ Boxing Day in Canada
Also, Kwanzaa begins its celebration on December 26th.
31~ New Year’s Eve
Enjoy this last night of 2013 and the beginning of new adventures and
dreams around the world…
May Peace On Earth somehow, magically reign!
I always enjoy watching the different cultures shooting off firecrackers
and having parades with dragons, along with so many other traditions
on the television shows. I have found that HGTV and PBS have some
interesting focuses on New Year’s Eve.
Out in the country, be careful when shooting off your guns into the air!
Here is a section on planting for the woodland creatures and for using
holly in decorating, too:
Old fashioned wished to “Deck the Halls with Boughs of Holly” resound
from my post to yours! Here are some facts about Holly (Ilex). It may be
considered evergreen or deciduous. They offer a variety of leaf types, dull
or glossy, shades of green or blue-green. Sometimes they have yellow or
Grow a few with broad, pointed leaves such as Chinese holly (I.coruta),
along with others that feature narrow, oval leaves such as inkberry
A type known as “ferox” (I.aquifolium) is also called Hedgehog holly and
has spiny edges.
I hope I have these facts correct from the Old Farmer’s Almanac, 2013.
If you are botanists, please feel free to give any needed amendments!
In our old house, I loved to cut different evergreen branches and holly
sprigs to decorate in vases, baskets with a hidden dish containing water
and even a wooden bucket by the hearth with the varieties mentioned.
The natural presentation of holly adds such a lovely scent to your rooms.
An arrangement can be made with different types to contrast and add
dimension, plus the bonus of the red berries to brighten it up. Arranged
in any kind of container you can imagine provides some extra oxygen to
the indoor environment, too.
Scents to enjoy during this month: Seasonal Aromatherapy!
*Spicy or pungent scents*
1. Evergreens boughs and branches.
2. Cranberry strings draped on branches of your trees.
3. Oranges with cloves stuck into them.
4. Cinnamon brooms or pine cones in a basket.
5. Hot mulled apple cider or eggnog with nutmeg.
*Sweet or yummy baked goods scents*
1. Sugar or Spritz cookies, so sweet and buttery, too. I like mine iced!
2. Gingerbread cookies (Don’t forget to read the Gingerbread Man or
Gingerbread Baby (I like Jan Brett’s version best.) books to little ones!)
3. Anise flavoring (licorice tasting) in Pfefferneuse (Germany) and
4. Russian Tea Cakes, Mexican Wedding Cakes, or Butter Nut (made
with pecans) Balls melt in your mouth! These are coated with powdered
sugar on them.
5. Kuchen (Germany), fruitcake or coffee cake. What is your family’s
breakfast holiday treat? My Grandmother made kuchen, my Mom
made those cinnamon rolls with orange glazed icing that you could
squeeze from a tube.
*Tangy and Cheery Scents*
1. Oranges in jello or in the toe of your stocking hung by the fire.
2. Grapefruits to be sectioned, balancing some Vitamin C in your diet.
3. Warm cocoa with marshmallows in a big pot on the stove when you
come in from playing in the snow or taking a walk in your boots.
4. Popcorn to string on your trees and happen to be popped into one’s
Whether you believe in Christmas or any of the hoopla attributed to it,
it is hard not to think of the history of such figures as:
and if you have any interest in looking them up and providing more about
them on your own posts, go for the countries and when they began to be