December 26th can be a huge anti-climax. A grouchy let-down because Christmas is over. Darn!
Or…is it? 🙂
No, Christmas isn’t over! It’s still here. There are 12 Days of Christmas and the first day of Christmas is today! Happy First Day of Christmas!
My son and I have celebrated the traditional 12 Days of Christmas — the first day of Christmas is December 26 and the 12th day is January 6, Epiphany. I’ve got some good reasons why you might want to consider adding this holiday tradition.
- It eases you out of the holidays and into the new year in a more gentle and gradual way. I find this really helps me and my son seemed to enjoy it. And it is the antidote for post-Christmas let-down.
- It has no focus on presents (except the post-Christmas card shopping for bargains and using gift cards). So, the pressure is off and you can enjoy other aspects of the season. Strip away the commercialism, and what do you have — only the best and most beautiful parts of Christmas, the good will, the coziness, the beauty of the lights and decorations, the spirtiual aspects, and the time with family and friends. You might like Christmas BETTER after December 25!
- If you have children at home, you typically have at least a week of winter break AFTER Christmas Day. So, it gives you a chance to have Christmas-y fun during that week before they go back to school — like going ice skating, drinking cocoa with a peppermint stick in it and going out to see light displays. And also doing good works – like helping out at home, volunteering or donating.
- Some of the Christmas attractions are still open (and still festive!) but will be significantly less crowded, including the National Tree, Meadowlark Gardens Winter Walk of Lights, Bull Run Festival of Lights, Tinsel!, Christmas Town Busch Gardens and Winterfest at Kings Dominion.
- It allows you time and space to celebrate some of the more spiritual aspects of the season after Santa returns to the North Pole. You might read some passages from the Bible or reflect on the impact of Jesus’ birth or celebrate neo-pagan Yule traditions.
- It gives you extra mileage out of your Christmas “stuff” — fuzzy socks, pyjamas, holiday teas, candy canes, books and decorations, movies, and music, since you have almost two more weeks of the Christmas season after Christmas Day.
- You can legitimately still send presents and cards, in case you are really running late this year!
- New Year’s Eve at your house looks more festive when the tree and decorations are still up.
- It makes the un-decorating task easier. I leave my decorations up until January 6, Epiphany. But I do phase them out gradually. Pretty much everything stays up until New Year’s, except the stockings of course. And I leave some lights up deep into January to comaat the winter blahs. But the tree doesn’t come down until January 6.
- It gives you another holiday to look forward to in the bleakest part of winter. My son and I look forward to Epiphany. I will have a special blog post on that day sharing stories and traditions.
The Twelve Days of Christmas
Sunday, December 26 – The First Day of Christmas and Thank You Note Day; Candy Cane Day
Monday, December 27 – The Second Day of Christmas and Fruitcake Day; Make Cut Out Snowflakes Day
Tuesday, December 28 – The Third Day of Christmas and Call a Friend Day; Card Playing Day
Wednesday, December 29 – The Fourth Day of Christmas and Still Need to Do Day
Thursday, December 30 – The Fifth Day of Christmas and Resolution Planning Day
Friday, December 31 – The Sixth Day of Christmas and New Year’s Eve and Champagne Day; World Peace Meditation Day
Saturday, January 1 – The Seventh Day of Christmas and New Year’s Day; First Hike Day (Virginia)
Sunday, January 2 – The Eighth Day of Christmas; Motivation and Inspiration Day
Monday, January 3 – The Ninth Day of Christmas and Fruitcake Toss Day
Tuesday, January 4 – The Tenth Day of Christmas and National Spaghetti Day
Wednesday, January 5 – The Eleventh Day of Christmas
Thursday, January 6 – The Twelth Day of Christmas and Epiphany. National Take Down the Christmas Tree Day.
Friday, January 7 – Orthodox Christmas Day
and also coming up…(visit my self-care blog now and through 2022)
Saturday, January 8 – National Vision Board Day
Wednesday, January 12 – Stick to Your Resolutions Day