Of Memories Of Christmas Past by Beaton – Day 14 Advent 2017

Christmas is the one holiday I look forward to all year round. I see some shops have started advertising Christmas Specials, so it’s not too early to talk about the festive season……… You know it’s almost Christmas when you walk into a shop and they are playing carols and of course a Santa Claus Station where you get your photo taken, sitting on s red suited guy’s lap. This is mostly kids’ stuff. I don’t think have had my photo taken with Father Christmas since I was in kindergarten. It used to be such a big deal and you would get a gift box too, I don’t remember if our parents paid for it, if they did they never said and we never thanked them for it.

Sankta Lucia by Annika Perry – Day 13 Advent 2017

HAPPY LUCIA TODAY in Sweden nearly every home, school, hospital, factory, workplace, church, hotel and restaurant is celebrating LUCIA. Lucia is the Bringer of Light and is celebrated on what, in the old almanac, was the darkest day of the year. The day is one of light, hope and love. The tradition has its roots in St. Lucia of Syracuse who died as a martyr in AD304.

Celebrating the Yuletide Season at Castle Vexstein by Jemima Pett – Day 10 Advent 2017, 2nd Sunday of Advent

The Yuletide season is one of relaxation and happiness for all who belong to Vexstein, from the lowliest to the highest, currently my uncle, Baron Smallweed, who succeeded a few years ago following the death of my other uncle, the late Baron Darcy.  The relaxation stems in part to the fact that we close down production at the brewery for the ten day holiday.  This allows everyone to have a good break and for all the equipment to be thoroughly cleaned and overhauled.   So Solstice really starts with the end of the last shift, and to mark that, we have a firework display over the brewery, and a street market with vendors selling hot drinks and snacks, playing music and dancing, on the streets outside the castle walls.

Christmas Mash-Up by Stephanie Ascough – Day 9 Advent 2017

I hope you are all enjoying the Christmas season! Building holiday traditions with my family makes me happy. We may be slow to decorate, but the handmade ornaments, Christmas candles and fragrant evergreen tree delight us all nonetheless. We’ll enjoy looking at Christmas lights and singing carols at our church. What has fascinated me for several years now are the many origins of Christmas celebrations. Refill your cocoa mug and light an evergreen candle, because this is gonna be fun.

Celebrating Gratefulness during the holiday season by D.E. Haggerty – Day 8 Advent 2017

I had an entire blog post planned out in my head about Christmas traditions and how my husband and I had developed our own as he’s often in foreign lands far away from either one of our families during the Christmas holidays. But then I went to a BusinessBoost event and heard a talk from Mo Gawdat. This evening was supposed to be about entrepreneurship and risk-taking. Mr. Gawdat is the Chief Business Officer of the futuristic dream factory Google X. I expected him to talk about Google and taking risks in the IT industry. That is definitely not what I got.

PANETTONE SEASON! by Judith Works – Day 6 Advent 2017

PANETTONE SEASON! by Judith Works Actually, it’s the holiday season. In the US this means from Thanksgiving to New Year’s day. So I have about five weeks to indulge in my favorite treat: panettone, that traditional sweet and oh-so-delicious Italian Christmas bread. About the first of November the stores, even in my corner of Puget Sound in the Pacific Northwest, begin stacking up the colorful boxes in windows and shelves and I begin loading up the shopping cart. The bread is distinctive – tall and domed and nestled in a paper cuff.

The Fourth Plinth by Geoff Le Pard – Day 5 Advent 2017

The world tumbled and tossed as Barry opened his eyes. It's what booze does, he thought: beer and it’s a slow churning; vodka takes you on a merry go round; and gin pummels you with the full spin cycle. He tried to identify where he was. Outside, for sure. Somewhere public. Paved if his arse told the truth. Where was Dan? He'd been with Dan, he was certain. A faint smear of memory made him narrow his eyes: Dan getting in a cab. Why wasn't he in the cab too? Dan pushing him away; Dan calling him something? Bully? Yeah that's it. Even mulish Dan had seen his true colours. Well, sod you, Dan Parsons, and Merry Christmas.