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Christmas Stocking History

rudolph christmas stockingThe stockings were hung by the chimney with care…” is a well-known line from Clement Moore’s famous Christmas poem, “Twas the Night Before Christmas.” But why do we hang stockings on Christmas Eve? Christmas stocking history can be traced back to very early times, and is also associated with legends about Saint Nicholas.

Although there aren’t written records that specifically detail the origins of this holiday tradition, some legends provide insight into the beginnings.

One legend about stockings is associated with Saint Nicholas, the fourth century bishop who helped create the character we now know as Santa Claus. According to this legend, a nobleman whose wife had died couldn’t afford to marry off his three daughters. Saint Nicholas saw the girls’ stockings hanging by the fireplace on Christmas and threw gold coins down the chimney to fill the stockings.

Some people believe this story about Saint Nicholas is the reason children started hanging their stockings by the fireplace, hoping that they might also receive presents from the generous gift giver.

Many cultures around the world now have traditions about leaving out containers to be filled at Christmas, but they’re not always stockings. In some countries such as Italy and France, kids leave shoes instead of stockings. And stockings no longer need to be hung by the fireplace (particularly since many modern homes don’t have them). Now many families use Christmas stocking holders instead.

Even though the exact origins of Christmas stocking history may always be uncertain, it’s clear that it’s a tradition that’s going to hang around for quite a bit longer.

– Revised from Squidoo: Why Do We Hang Christmas Stockings?

Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer Lyrics

rudolph the red nosed reindeer mp3If you’re a fan of Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, you can thank Montgomery Ward. The cute Christmas reindeer was created by Robert L. May in 1939 as an assignment for the retailer. Montgomery Ward had been buying and giving away coloring books for Christmas every year, and they decided it would be cheaper to create. So Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer was born. It was immediately popular. In its first year of publication, 2.4 million copies of Rudolph’s story were distributed by Montgomery Ward.

The author’s brother-in-law, Johnny Marks, was a radio producer and song writer who decided to adapt May’s story into a song. It was first sung commercially by crooner Harry Brannon on New York City radio in the latter part of 1948 before Gene Autry recorded it formally in 1949. Now it’s a holiday classic.

Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer Lyrics
Rudolph, the red-nosed reindeer
had a very shiny nose.
And if you ever saw him,
you would even say it glows.

All of the other reindeer
used to laugh and call him names.
They never let poor Rudolph
join in any reindeer games.

Then one foggy Christmas Eve
Santa came to say:
“Rudolph, with your nose so bright,
won’t you guide my sleigh tonight?”

Then all the reindeer loved him
as they shouted out with glee,
Rudolph the red-nosed reindeer,
you’ll go down in history!

Make a Christmas Video to Preserve Your Holiday Memories

No Comments »Written on October 13th, 2010 by
Categories: Christmas Blog

Most families take pictures to remember the good times in their lives. These images are taken, developed or viewed online and then stored away. Taking snapshots of your Christmas moments is a good idea, but they can’t capture the sounds and animation of the holidays. Making a Christmas video is a great way to capture these moments. It will not only give you years of enjoyment, but you can also send a copy of it to family who couldn’t be with you to celebrate the holidays.

Today digital recorders are affordable, lightweight and small enough to carry with you just about everywhere.
They’re also easy to connect to your computer, so once you capture your video, you can save it to your computer and enhance it with fonts, background colors, online scrapbook pages and more. You can also share your videos online now quickly and easily on sites such as YouTube and Facebook.

camcorderYou can capture the entire family in your video simply by placing it on a tripod and letting it run. Just make sure that whichever room you use has adequate lighting and is neat so you don’t have a very cluttered background. Make sure your video recorder has an adequate battery supply. Always keep extras on hand during the holidays.

You can record each event for Christmas – from the visiting to the opening of gifts to the sharing of holiday meals. You may also want to try interviewing each family member and have them share their favorite holiday memory from both past and present Christmas celebrations. Have them talk about what traditions mean the most to them – this is a good way to pass those traditions down to the next generation. Later you can save each type of video (interviews, meals, gift opening) as individual files or compile them into one edited masterpiece of your entire holiday season.

Years from now you’ll be able to look back at these videos and remember all the good times your family shared at Christmas.