Sunday, 23 December 2007


"A merry Christmas to everybody! A happy New Year to all the world!" - Charles Dickens (A Christmas Carol)

Christmas Eve this year has crept up on us without realisation, without much warning. We were talking about it yesterday and concluded that the pace of life must be getting so rapid, so hectic, that time seems to rush by. Either that or we are getting older! Melbourne this year seems to be rather quiet and the traffic has suddenly been reduced. I think that many people have taken an extra long weekend and they have gone away from the metropolis to enjoy an extra long weekend away. For us, a quiet Christmas at home with family and friends.

I take this opportunity to wish all my friends here on Yahoo 360, all the best for the Festive Season, many wishes for a Merry Christmas, health and happiness for everyone and peace for the world.

Tradition dictates that on Christmas Eve all Christmas decorations should be put up, the Christmas Tree trimmed and the ivy, holly and mistletoe brought into the house for the first time only today. The Yule Log or “Christmas Brand” must be brought into the house and this log should be taken from your own trees, found or be given to you, but never bought. It should be lit at dusk with a splinter from last year’s Yule Log. It should burn that night, but preferably burn all night and then all through the twelve nights of Christmas. It should not be left to go out but it can be extinguished and re-lit. The piece that is kept for lighting next year’s log will protect the house from burning down all through the year.

The Christmas candle should be lit for the first time tonight and it should be large enough to light the evening meal for the next twelve days. It should be bright red in colour and must never blow out accidentally but always snuffed at the end of the meal.

The Finns have a tradition that recounts how on Christmas Eve, one of the longest nights in the year, ghosts roam the earth. They set out candles on the graves of dead relatives making the travels of the spirits from and to the graves easier. The candles also placate the ghosts and ensure that the family is safe.

“Silent Night” was composed on this day in 1818 by Franz Gruber and sung for the first time the next day.

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