From putting up a Christmas tree to sending Christmas cards in the mail, these 10 Christmas traditions are a testament to how much we still love old-fashioned yuletide customs.
1.Sending Christmas Cards by Post
The first Christmas card was invented by
Nowadays, around 900 million Christmas cards delight their recipients in the UK every year. Even though you can send cards made out of pixels on your phone, people still love to receive physical cards in the post, and
2.Fill Your Stockings
When it comes to the excitement generated by the contents of socks, nothing comes close to Christmas stockings. The festive fireplace hosiery has been around for centuries, since at least the early
Although the exact origin of Christmas stockings is unknown, one story speaks of St. Nicholas, who being the charitable chap he was threw three bags of gold into a poor man’s house one night. One sack of gold landed in a stocking being dried by the fireplace, making the man’s daughters very happy when they awoke next morning. Children (and adults) still get excited to discover what goodies St. Nick has left for them in their novelty sized socks.
3.Singing Christmas Carols
People have been singing carols for thousands of years in Europe, a tradition that was originally practiced by Pagans while they partied at stone circles during the winter solstice. It wasn’t until 1223 when St. Francis of Assisi put on
4.Eating A Turkey Christmas Dinner
What Christmas would be complete without a turkey dinner with all the trimmings? Even vegans can get in on the action, with plant-based turkey substitutes. But long before quorn was a thing,
Before this, most people in England consumed roast beef or goose for their Christmas dinners. As the 19th century drew to a close, Queen Vic’s influence had established turkey as a British Christmas staple, a delicious tradition we still enjoy to this day.
5. Watching a Vintage James Bond Flick
For generations of older Brits, a certain part of Christmas day is synonymous with Ian Fleming’s famous spy,
This festive tradition proved so popular that it influenced the decision to release some of the more modern Bond films in cinemas close to Christmas time. Incidentally, the 1969 Bond film On Her Majesty’s Secret Service features the song “Do You Know How Christmas Trees Are Grown?”
6. Pennies in the Pudding
Christmas Puddings are loved the world over, and the fact that finding a penny in one is supposed to bring
7. Putting Up a Christmas Tree
Perhaps the most iconic Christmas tradition, putting up Christmas trees, has a
The Romans celebrated winter solstice with a festival called Saturnalia, dedicated to the god of agriculture, Saturn. The Romans adorned their homes with evergreen boughs to commemorate this time of year and the promise of their land becoming fertile and fruitful again. This tradition was passed down to the 16th century German Christians who bought trees for their homes at Christmas. When German settlers arrived in North America in the 1830s they took their Christmas tree tradition with them, but it was banned by American Puritans who considered it a “pagan mockery.”
However, in 1846, Queen Victoria and Prince Albert made the Christmas tree popular in Britain, influencing the United States to follow suit, and the rest is history. Now it’s hard to imagine celebrating Christmas without putting up a tree, decorating it with tinsel, and putting presents beneath it, a symbol that for many of us encapsulates everything we love about Christmas.
8. The Yule Log
The Yule log is a tasty tradition stretching back to the
9. Snapping Christmas Crackers
Christmas crackers were invented by an English pastry cook called
10. Enjoying Advent Calendars
What better way to count down to Christmas than with an
Children’s excitement over Christmas grows every day as they open another door of their calendars and enjoy the little chocolates inside (that is, if they haven’t eaten them all already!)