• The word Christmas is Old English, a contraction of Christ’s Mass.
• Electric lights for trees were first used in 1895.
• In the Ukraine, if you find a spider web in the house on Christmas morning, it is believed to be a harbinger of good luck! There once lived a woman so poor, says a Ukrainian folk tale, that she could not afford Christmas decorations for her family. One Christmas morning, she awoke to find that spiders had trimmed her children’s tree with their webs. When the morning sun shone on them, the webs turned to silver and gold. An artificial spider and web are often included in the decorations on Ukrainian Christmas trees.
• Jingle Bells” was first written for Thanksgiving and then became one of the most popular Christmas songs. Electric lights for trees were first used in 1895.
• The word Noel derives from the French expression “les bonnes nouvelles” or “the good news”.
• Before turkey (animal), the traditional Christmas meal in England was a pig’s head and mustard.
• Clearing up a common misconception, in Greek, X means Christ. That is where the word “X-Mas” comes from. Not because someone took the “Christ” out of Christmas.
• Saint Nicholas is commonly identified with Santa Claus due to his reputation for generosity, secret gift-giving and his kindness to children. SANTA has different names around the world - Kriss Kringle in Germany, Le Befana in Italy, Pere Noel in France and Deushka Moroz (Grandfather Frost) in Russia
• The Spanish ritual on New Year’s Eve is to eat twelve grapes at midnight. The tradition is meant to secure twelve happy months in the coming year.
• In Mexico, wearing red underwear on New Year’s Eve is said to bring new love in the upcoming year. The Dutch burn bonfires of Christmas trees on the street and launch fireworks. The fires are meant to purge the old and welcome the new.
• IN the Czech Republic they enjoy dinners of fish soup, eggs and carp. The number of people at the table must be even, or the one without a partner will die next year.
• In Greece, New Year’s Day is also the Festival of St. Basil, one of the founders of the Greek Orthodox Church. One of the traditional foods served is Vassilopitta, or St Basil’s cake. A silver or gold coin is baked inside the cake. Whoever finds the coin in their piece of cake will be especially lucky during the coming year.
MAY 2011 BE A YEAR OF GREAT SUCCESS AND PROSPERITY BUT ABOVE ALL, TRUSTING GOD AND WALKING WITH HIM.