Archive for December 27, 2012

12 Days of Christmas Gifts

We had a good Christmas holiday here in Newton.  It presented challenges for some.  LOL

Christmas falling on Tuesday has given a weird tilt to the work week!  What day is it anyway?!  :)

I just started a new Twelve Days of Christmas promotion in my store.  If you don’t get my email newsletters, you can check it out here:

http://www.sewnatural.net/12-26-12-Gift_eletter.htm

It is unique only in the fact that I’m following the traditional view and not the popular song or the common (retailers’ ?) view that the 12 days fall somewhere between Thanksgiving and Christmas.

The Twelve Days of Christmas are the festive days beginning Christmas Day and ending on the Twelfth Night of Christmas which is always on the evening of January 5th.

It was fun and interesting to research this very old and traditional period on the calendar.

Currently, the twelve days and nights are celebrated in widely varying ways around the world. For example, some give gifts only on Christmas Day, some only on Twelfth Night, and some each of the twelve nights.

Celebrants observing the Twelve Days may give gifts on each day of the Twelve Days representing a wish for a corresponding month of the new year. 

The significance of the twelve days of Christmas to Christians is that they mark the time between when Jesus was born and when he was visited by the Wise Men. In some countries, Epiphany, January 6, is the more traditional date for giving gifts than is Christmas day. These gifts symbolize the gifts brought by the Wise Men, also called the Three Kings, or Magi.

Growing up, our family used this date as a deadline for when our home-made Christmas presents actually had to be finished and delivered.  We used the school break time to get lots done!  :)

I personally like the theory that the Magi were religious scholars, rabbis and astronomers, travelling with a large entourage, “following the star”, or some other astrological phenomenon. 

As a theoretical astrophysicist, Grant Mathews spent two years in research which led him to conclude that the heavenly sign around the time of the birth of Jesus Christ was likely an unusual alignment of planets, the sun and the moon.

For more on Grant Mathews’ theory, go to:

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/22347641/ns/technology_and_science-space/t/why-did-wise-men-follow-star-east/

Grant Mathews, a Notre Dame astrophysicist, points at a computer generated demonstration of the night sky of April 17, 6 B.C. in the Digital Visiualization Theater at the University of Notre Dame.

Enlightening to me is the fact that NASA has databases which with “In principle, we can see any star that was ever made from the beginning of time if we knew where to look. So the question is, could we find a star that could be a good candidate for what showed up then?” Mathews said referring to the “star” that the Biblical Wise Men are following.  Fascinating!