Hanukkah - Sunday, December 18 - Monday, December 26
Christmas - Sunday, December 25
New Year's Day - Sunday, Jan. 1
There are actually dozens of celebrations in December - here are just a few...
National Cupcake Day, National Wear Your Pearls Day - Thurs. December 15
National Ugly Sweater Day, National Chocolate Covered Anything Day - Fri. December 16
The Winter Solstice is Wednesday December 21, 2022.
The word solstice comes from Latin and is translated to mean “sun stands still.” The solstice occurs at the same time all over the world, winter in the northern Hemisphere and summer in the southern hemisphere.
It was a mystery in ancient times, but today we understand that this astronomical event is caused by the tilt of the Earth and its motion in orbit around the sun. What we know best about the winter solstice is that it is the shortest day of the year, and daylight increases gradually starting the next day. This is good news if you are one of those people who dread the dark days of winter.
This was a time for celebration for our ancestors, who considered this day to be a spiritual time as well as practical. It was believed that the fertility of crops, the livelihood of livestock and the health of people were dependent on observing solstice rituals.
Solstice celebrations continue around the globe with food, nature and setting intentions for the coming season and New Year, sometimes referred to as New Year Resolutions.
Winter solstice celebrations often include music, dancing, storytelling, hiking, meditation and other back to nature activities. No celebration is complete without food. Traditional winter solstice foods have an emphasis on nature, like nuts, berries, spices, squash, potatoes and meat. The orange is a common symbol for the return of the sun.
One of the oldest traditions of the winter solstice is candlelight, which symbolizes the suns’ return in a few months. Many choose not to use electricity on this night, so consider eating your winter solstice meal by candlelight after the sun goes down.