It’s hard to believe that the Holidays are once again upon us! Seems like just yesterday we were basking in the sun at the beach, planning our vacations, and relishing the long warm days of summer. Today, as we inaugurate another cycle of daylight savings time, it’s time to prepare for the glorious Holiday Season.
Most stores and shopping malls across the U.S. are already adorned with cheerful red and green ornaments and festively decorated pine trees. Sweet aromas of spiced potpourri and hot chocolate thickly fill the air, while familiar Christmas tunes echo the spirit of the Holidays. But what about other countries around he world? How do people in Europe, Africa, Asia and Latin America prepare for the winter holidays? And what’s significant about their traditions?
Over the next two months, we’ll take you on a journey of winter holiday history, traditions, gift-giving customs, and even bizarre superstitions and rituals associated with celebrating Christmas, Hannukah, Kwanza and New Year across the globe.
holidays around the world1_Page_01
Want to know why Russians celebrate Christmas in January? Ever wondered about the significance of Holiday Greeting Cards? What exactly is the “Old New Year”? And what’s the difference between Santa Clause, Father Frost, and Yul Tomten?
We’ll answer these and other questions as we unravel the marvels, mysteries and magic of the Holiday Season.
To get you started, here’s a brief history of how Russia came to celebrate New Year on January 1.