There’s been a lot of controversy over when the Twelve Days of Christmas begin and end, but the Church of England stands firm that the first day of Christmas begins at sunset on Christmas Eve and ends on the night of January 5th (Twelfth Night). I’m in the other camp who believe the First Day of Christmas is Christmas Day and the Twelfth Day of Christmas is January 6th, the Feast of the Epiphany, also known as Three Kings Day. Since Epiphany is the celebration of the visit of the Wise Men, it makes no sense to me that Christmas would end the day before.
Which brings me to something else that doesn’t make sense - Christmas decorations going up in November. Hello! Christmas isn’t in November. And it isn’t over on December 26th, the day so many Christmas trees are now being stripped of their ornaments and discarded. I’m a traditionalist when it comes to Christmas, so forgive me if I find all of this straying from tradition a bit bah, humbuggy.
Call me sentimental, but I can’t help longing for a good old fashioned Christmas like the ones I enjoyed as a child. Nativity plays in elementary school, singing Christmas carols, the Christmas tree being brought home by my father just before Christmas, helping him decorate it, placing the star I’d made at school on the top. Christmas morning was always exciting, but it was never an orgy of opening presents and it was full of surprises because my brothers and I didn’t have a clue what we’d be getting. There were no TV commercials to solicit a desire for the latest toy or gadget.
Speaking of presents, I've often wondered how all those presents came to be in the Twelve Days of Christmas song seeing that the twelve days were originally feast days of the church. I’ve tried to find out, but the only thing I learned is that thought to be French in origin, the lyrics were first published in England in 1780 as part of a children’s book entitled Mirth without Mischief.
On that note I'll leave you with warm wishes for a merry Twelve Days of Christmas and a new year filled with blessings.
P.S. My romantic thriller The Tangled Web is on sale for 99 cents until the Twelfth Day of Christmas. If you haven't already read it, now's the time to grab it. On sale in all Kindle stores.
US http://www.amazon.com/dp/B007Z5Y3ZQ UK http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B007Z5Y3ZQ?*Version*=1&*entries*=0