Archive for category Holiday

National Ice Cream Day

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Ice cream

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Today is another of my favorite days – National Ice Cream Day! Today I can celebrate with wild abandon and no guilt—not that I ever feel guilty when eating ice cream, but today I can say, “Hey! I’m celebrating here!” That will calm the masses for all of ten seconds after which, they’ll expect me to share! Aw, man!

Enjoy your favorite ice cream today – no excuses! With dairy free, gluten free, sugar-free, and dye free ice creams available, no one need miss out. Of course, I prefer my ice cream homemade… and pistachio, but offer me store-bought any flavor and see if I turn it down! (Which will only happen if pumpkin or marshmallow are involved! Ew!)

What’s your favorite ice cream flavor?


bowl of ice cream


National Ice Cream Day is observed each year on the 3rd Sunday in July and is a part of National Ice Cream Month.  This day is a fun celebration enjoyed with a bowl, cup or cone filled with your favorite flavor of ice cream.

Thousands of years ago, people in the Persian Empire would put snow in a bowl, pour grape-juice concentrate over it and eat it as a treat.  They did this when the weather was hot and used the snow saved in the cool-keeping underground chambers known as “yakhchal”, or taken from the snowfall that remained at the top of mountains by the summer capital.

It is believed that ice cream was first introduced into the United States by Quaker colonists who brought their ice cream recipes with them.  Their ice cream was sold at shops in New York and other cities during the colonial era.

  • Ben Franklin, George Washington, and Thomas Jefferson enjoyed ice cream.
  • 1813 -First Lady Dolley Madison served ice cream at the Inaugural Ball.
  • 1832 – African American confectioner, Augustus Jackson, created multiple ice cream recipes as well as a superior technique to manufacture ice cream.
  • 1843 – Philadelphian, Nancy Johnson, received the first U.S. patent for a small-scale hand-cranked ice cream freezer.
  • 1920 – Harry Burt puts the first ice cream trucks on the streets.

HOW TO OBSERVE

Enjoy National Ice Cream Day by sharing some with your family and friends! Post on social media using #NationalIceCreamDay.

HISTORY

In 1984, President Ronald Reagan proclaimed July as National Ice Cream Month and established National Ice Cream Day as the third Sunday in the month of July.


ice cream cones

Ice Cream Trivia

The average American eats 26 liters (45.8 pints) of ice-cream a year.

Worldwide, around 15 billion liters (3.3 billion gallons) of ice-cream are consumed every year, enough to fill 5,000 Olympic swimming pools.

According to Nasa, ice-cream is among the top three items most missed by astronauts on space missions. The others are pizza and fizzy drinks.

Hawaii and Wisconsin are the only US states with laws governing ice-cream container size.

The last thing Elvis Presley ate was four scoops of ice-cream and six chocolate chip cookies.

Marco Polo brought back from China descriptions of a sherbet dessert.

The cone didn’t appear until 1904 when a Syrian waffle maker at the St. Louis World’s Fair began rolling his pastries into horns to help an ice cream vendor who had run out of dishes.

The idea of the ice cream cone had been patented a year earlier, in 1903, by an Italian in New York City, but the fair popularized it.

Farmers in Vermont used to feed leftovers provided by Ben and Jerry’s to their hogs. The hogs didn’t seem to care for Mint Oreo Cookie.

Former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher was part of the team that first invented the method of making soft serve ice cream.

 

Compiled from NationalDayCalendar, Useless Daily, and Google.

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National Women And Girls HIV/AIDS Awareness Day

2018 marks the twenty-fifth anniversary of the loss of my baby brother, Keith, to AIDS-related complications. He was twenty-nine-years-old.  Not a cause for celebration, but a time to recommit to spreading awareness about this disease that does not discriminate. AIDS isn’t the ‘epidemic’ it once was, but any disease whose victims still number in the millions is not something to become complacent over.

HIV/AIDS at its worst didn’t just take lives. Families, friendships, marriages, livelihoods and more were left broken and devastated in its wake. Too many AIDS patients died alienated and alone but for the simple lack of knowledge.

Pledge today to be a part of the solution–to learn and share the FACTS about this killer. Nothing should be taken for granted. Sexually active adults should be having the AIDS-conversation. Parents should be talking to their children–especially their young daughters. The old saying goes, “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” In the case of of HIV/AIDS, it could also save a life. Be safe. Be smart. Be informed. –FD

 

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Observed annually on March 10th, National Women and Girls HIV/AIDS Awareness Day is a day to empower people everywhere with knowledge and information regarding this disease and the often overlooked impact that it has on women and girls.

On this educational day, each year, groups, organizations, state and local health officials and thousands of people share the facts regarding HIV/AIDS and the impact on them.

HOW TO OBSERVE

Some of the action that is taken, or can be taken, on this day is:

  • Educating women and girls how to prevent HIV/AIDS
  • Encouraging more women and girls to get tested
  • Providing services to those living with the disease
  • Doing whatever it takes to reduce the impact of HIV/AIDS

Use #WomenGirlsHIVAIDSAwarenessDay to post on social media.

HISTORY

National Woman and Girls HIV/AIDS Awareness Day is coordinated by the Office on Women’s Health (OWH) within the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Health of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services alongside many organizations that play a critical role in the observance in communities across the nation.

From Nationaldaycalendar.com

 

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10 Facts About HIV/AIDS

HIV/AIDS remains one of the world’s most significant public health challenges, particularly in low- and middle-income countries.

As a result of recent advances in access to antiretroviral therapy (ART), HIV-positive people now live longer and healthier lives. In addition, it has been confirmed that ART prevents onward transmission of HIV.

An estimated 20.9 million people were receiving HIV treatment in mid-2017. However, globally, only 53% of the 36.7 million people living with HIV in 2016 were receiving ART.

Progress has also been made in preventing and eliminating mother-to-child transmission and keeping mothers alive. In 2016, almost 8 out of 10 pregnant women living with HIV, or 1.1 million women, received antiretrovirals (ARVs).

WHO has released a set of normative guidelines and provides support to countries in formulating and implementing policies and programmes to improve and scale up HIV prevention, treatment, care and support services for all people in need.

This fact file provides current data on the disease, and ways to prevent and treat it.

Fact 1: HIV (human immunodeficiency virus) infects cells of the immune system

Infection results in the progressive deterioration of the immune system, breaking down the body’s ability to fend off some infections and other diseases. AIDS (Acquired immune deficiency syndrome) refers to the most advanced stages of HIV infection, defined by the occurrence of any of more than 20 opportunistic infections or related cancers.

Fact 2: HIV can be transmitted in several ways

HIV can be transmitted through:

* unprotected sexual intercourse (vaginal or anal) or oral sex with an infected person;
* transfusions of contaminated blood or blood products ortransplantation of contaminated tissue;
* the sharing of contaminated injecting equipment and solutions (needles, syringes) or tattooing equipment;
* through the use of contaminated surgical equipment and other sharp instruments;
* the transmission between a mother and her baby during pregnancy, childbirth and breastfeeding.

Fact 3: There are several ways to prevent HIV transmission

Key ways to prevent HIV transmission:

* practice safe sexual behaviours such as using condoms;
* get tested and treated for sexually transmitted infections, including HIV to prevent onward transmission;
* avoid injecting drugs, or if you do, always use sterile needles and syringes;
* ensure that any blood or blood products that you might need are tested for HIV;
* access voluntary medical male circumcision if you live in one of the 14 countries where this intervention is promoted;
* if you have HIV start antiretroviral therapy as soon as possible for your own health and to prevent HIV transmission to your sexual or drug using partner or to your infant (if you are pregnant or breastfeeding);
* use pre-exposure prophylaxis prior to engaging in high risk behaviour; demand post-exposure prophylaxis if there is the risk that you have been exposed to HIV infection in both occupational and non-occupational settings.

Fact 4: 36.7 million people are living with HIV worldwide.

Globally, an estimated 36.7 million (34.0–39.8 million) people were living with HIV in 2015, and 1.8 million (1.5–2.0 million) of these were children. The vast majority of people living with HIV are in low- and middle-income countries. An estimated 2.1 million (1.8–2.4 million) people were newly infected with with HIV in 2015. An estimated 35 million people have died from HIV-related causes so far, including 1.1 million (940 000–1.3 million) in 2015.

Fact 5: Combination antiretroviral therapy (ART) prevents HIV from multiplying in the body

If the reproduction of HIV stops, then the body’s immune cells are able to live longer and provide the body with protection from infections. Effective ART results in a reduction in viral load, the amount of virus in the body, greatly reducing the risk of transmitting the virus sexual partners. If the HIV positive partner in a couple is on effective ART, the likelihood of sexual transmission to the HIV-negative partner can be reduced by as much as 96%. Expanding coverage of HIV treatment contributes to HIV prevention efforts.

Fact 6: As of mid-2016, 18.2 million people were receiving ART worldwide

Of these, more than 16 million lived in low- and middle-income countries. In 2016, WHO released the second edition of the “Consolidated guidelines on the use of antiretroviral drugs for treating and preventing HIV infection.” These guidelines present several new recommendations, including the recommendation to provide lifelong ART to all children, adolescents and adults, including all pregnant and breastfeeding women living with HIV, regardless of CD4 cell count as soon as possible after diagnosis. WHO has also expanded earlier recommendations to offer pre-exposure prophylaxis of HIV (PrEP) to selected people at substantial risk of acquiring HIV. Alternative first-line treatment regimens are also recommended.

Fact 7: HIV testing can help to ensure treatment for people in need

Access to HIV testing and medicines should be dramatically accelerated in order to reach the goal of ending AIDS by 2030. HIV testing reach is still limited, as an estimated 40% of people with HIV or over 14 million people remain undiagnosed and don’t know their infection status. WHO is recommending innovative HIV-self-testing and partner notification approaches to increase HIV testing services among undiagnosed people.

Fact 8: An estimated 1.8 million children are living with HIV

According to 2015 figures most of these children live in sub-Saharan Africa and were infected through transmission from their HIV-positive mothers during pregnancy, childbirth or breastfeeding. Close to 150 000 children (110 000–190 000) became newly infected with HIV in 2015.

Fact 9: Elimination of mother-to-child-transmission is becoming a reality

Access to preventive interventions remains limited in many low- and middle-income countries. But progress has been made in some areas such as prevention of mother-to-child transmission of HIV and keeping mothers alive. In 2015, almost 8 out of 10 pregnant women living with HIV – 1.1 million women – received antiretrovirals worldwide. In 2015, Cuba was the first country declared by WHO as having eliminated mother-to-child transmission of HIV and syphilis. In June 2016, 3 other countries: Armenia, Belarus and Thailand were also validated for eliminating mother-to-child HIV.

Fact 10: HIV is the greatest risk factor for developing active TB disease

In 2015, an estimated 1.2 million (11%) of the 10.4 million people who developed TB worldwide were HIV-positive. In the same year approximately 390 000 deaths from tuberculosis occurred among people living with HIV. The WHO African Region accounted for around 75% of the estimated number of HIV-related TB deaths.

 

Compiled by the World Health Organization (WHO)

 

For Keith

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Wacky Wednesday!

Sometimes, Valentine’s Day is just another day. 😀

(Click on image and scroll through)

 

Smiley

 

Images from Pinterest

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It’s Fat Tuesday!

It’s time to party it up, and ….eat!!

Fat Tuesday is the day before Ash Wednesday. It is also known as Mardi Gras Day or Shrove Day. It is a day when people eat all they want of everything and anything they want as the following day is Ash Wednesday, the beginning of a long fasting period for Christians. In addition to fasting, Christians also give up something special that they enjoy. So, Fat Tuesday is a celebration and the opportunity to enjoy that favorite food or snack that you give up for the long Lenten season.

Nowhere on the planet is Fat Tuesday celebrated more than on Bourbon Street in New Orleans. The day is celebrated with festivities and parades and of course much food and drink. While in New Orleans, a big tradition is in wearing Mardi Gras beads and giving them to others. And tradition requires that if a guy gives a girl some beads, she has to do something for him… this can be just loads of fun…

Did You Know? On Bourbon street in New Orleans, store owners coat poles and columns with Vaseline to keep  wild and rowdy revelers from climbing them (and perhaps falling).

In addition to being called Mardi Gras Day and Fat Tuesday, it is also called Fastnacht Day. Pennsylvania Dutch country, and other areas with large German populations, refer to it as Fastnacht Day.

 

 

From holidayinsights.com

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National Trivia Day


Trivia banner


Today is one of my favorite days – National Trivia Day!

Trivia is available on every subject/topic imaginable, but I’m fond of trivia that is random… and useless. Think Cheer’s Cliff Clavin!

NationalDayCalendar.com tells us:

National Trivia Day is observed across the United States each year on January 4.

The word trivia is plural for the word trivium.

In ancient times, the term “trivia” was appropriated to mean something very new.

Nostalgic college students in the 1960s, along with others, began to informally trade questions and answers about the popular culture of their youth.  After writing trivia columns, Columbia University students Ed Goodgold and Dan Carlinsky created the earliest inter-collegiate quiz bowls that tested culturally (and emotionally) significant, yet virtually useless information, which they dubbed trivia contests.  Trivia (Dell, 1966) was the first book treating trivia in the revolutionary new sense, authored by Ed Goodgold and Dan Carlinsky.  This book achieved a ranking on the New York Times bestseller list.

  • Over time, the word “trivia” has come to refer to obscure and arcane bits of dry knowledge as well as nostalgic remembrances of pop culture.
  • In North America, the game, Trivial Pursuit peaked in 1984, a year in which over 20 million games were sold.
  • Steven Point, Wisconsin holds the largest current trivia contest at the University of  Wisconsin-Stevens Point’s college radio station WWSP 89.9 FM.  April 2013 hosted the 44th annual event which usually has 400 teams ranging from 1 to 150 players.  The competition, which is open to anyone, spans 54 hours over a weekend with eight questions each hour.

HOW TO OBSERVED

Check out the National Day Calendar Trivia page and see if you can answer all the questions correctly. Use #NationalTriviaDay to share on social media.

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Of course, I could not let this day pass without a list of some random and totally useless trivia of my own!  It won’t help you pass an exam, make dinner, or outline your latest WIP, but just think of all the conversations you can start (or interrupt) with glorious tidbits like Norwegian skier Odd-Bjoern Hjelmeset on why he didn’t win a gold at the 2010 Olympics: “I think I have seen too much porn in the last 14 days.”

Huh? Huh? I’d give him a medal for saying that on camera!

Enjoy the day and spread some useless trivia of your own!

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Random and Totally Useless Trivia

M&M’s actually stands for “Mars & Murrie’s,” the last names of the candy’s founders.

Carly Simon’s dad is the Simon of Simon and Schuster’s. He co-founded the company.

In 1939, Hitler’s nephew wrote an article called “Why I Hate My Uncle.” He came to the U.S., served in the Navy, and settled on Long Island.

Fredric Bauer invented the Pringles can. When he passed away in 2008, his ashes were buried in one.

The string on boxes of animal crackers was originally placed there so the container could be hung from a Christmas tree.

Alaska is the only state whose name can be typed on one row of keys.

At the 1905 wedding of Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt, President Teddy Roosevelt gave away the bride.

William Faulkner refused a dinner invitation from JFK’s White House. “Why that’s a hundred miles away,” he said. “That’s a long way to go just to eat.”

In 1907, an ad campaign for Kellogg’s Corn Flakes offered a free box of cereal to any woman who would wink at her grocer.

Editor Bennett Cerf challenged Dr. Seuss to write a book using no more than 50 different words. The result? Green Eggs and Ham.

Obsessive nose picking is called Rhinotillexomania.

The same person who sang “You’re a Mean One, Mr. Grinch” was also the voice of Tony the Tiger (Thurl Ravenscroft).

Michael Jackson’s 1988 autobiography Moonwalk was edited by Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis.

In the first Kentucky Derby, 13 of the 15 jockeys were black. Of the first 28 derby winners, 15 were black.

On Saved by the Bell: The College Years, A.C. Slater learned his last name was really Sanchez. His father changed it to get into the military academy.

In Japan, letting a sumo wrestler make your baby cry is considered good luck.

The actor who was inside R2-D2 hated the actor who played C-3PO, calling him “the rudest man I’ve ever met.”

Between 1900 and 1920, Tug of War was an Olympic event.

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Smiley

 

From NationalDayCalendar.com and MentalFloss.com

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Happy New Year!


Happy New Year


Wishing you the best life has to offer in this brand new year!

May you realize your dreams and exceed your goals!

Happy New Year from my home to yours!


Image from Pixabay

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Favorite Christmas Memories


Favorite Christmas Memories banner


The holiday season is often a time of reflection for some, with hearts and minds returning to memories of Christmases past. One of my favorite Christmas memories is from the year I was ten.

Hospitalized with a non-malignant mass on my thyroid, I was one sad, little girl knowing my parents and eight siblings would celebrate the day without me. Christmas was always a loud, crazy day for my family, full of music and food, and lots of laughter, and I was going to miss it.

But when my doctor, Pedro Sevidall, arrived for his rounds on Christmas Eve, he came bearing gifts. I could go home for Christmas…from 8 AM to 5 PM. The size of the mass in my throat made speaking, swallowing and eating all major feats, but I didn’t care, I was going home for the day.

It was a great day. I’d already been in the hospital nearly two weeks at that point, so just being back home was comforting…and exhausting! I remember falling asleep several times. When my parents took me back that evening, mom said I was asleep before she could get me dressed for bed. I don’t remember that. But, I do remember waking up later when Dr. Sevidall came in for his rounds. I’d gotten a guitar for Christmas and brought it back to the hospital with me. He picked it up and started playing… and he was GOOD!

I don’t remember how long Dr. Sevidall played my guitar, but he stayed until I fell asleep again. Such a nice man.

And a great memory.


Some of my friends have shared memories and traditions from past holidays with me, and with their permission, I’m sharing them here.

Christmas is important to Italians and Catholics. As I am both, it shouldn’t be a surprise to anyone that we have several traditions that I love, some of which I can’t partake in while living so far from home, and others that (despite the distance) we can still be a part of. The ladies in my family used to shop together and bake together, and those moments of togetherness can’t be duplicated over the distance. Still, the recipes remain, and I make the same foods here for my family of four that I did in Pennsylvania with the large, extended family. I think the food helps bridge the gap. My in-laws always bake a birthday cake for Jesus and sing to him before dessert. In my family, we gather around the manger and sing to him first thing in the morning, even before presents. When we don’t make it home for the holiday, the four of us keep Christ in “Christmas” and keep our family close in our hearts by participating in those traditions. We sing “Happy Birthday” in the morning and make him a birthday cake. These are traditions that can be embraced by many or few, can be passed down for generations to come, and will always be among my fondest memories of the holiday.

Staci Troilo, Writer/Editor

Author of The Medici Protectorate series  

Most of my earliest Christmas memories centre around three things: dogs, books, and chocolate. Funnily enough, not much has changed.

I remember getting up early on Christmas morning, rushing downstairs and yelling ‘He’s been’ to my parents before scattering the floor with wrapping paper.

My Corgi watched on, panting, and with that bemused grin only dogs can do. I’m sure he was thinking ‘if I made that much mess, there’d be trouble’.

While Mum checked on the turkey that had been cooking overnight and Dad made breakfast, I’d hunt out my favourite gifts. Then I’d plonk myself on the settee, with my dog on one side, a Cadbury’s selection box on the other (yes, I’d sneak in a few chocolate buttons before breakfast – well, it was Christmas after all!) and my nose firmly planted in the book (first memories are of the Twinkle annual and it was always a hardback in those days)

While my taste in reading material changed, my love for Corgis and chocolate didn’t – I still have both today … and a Kindle full of books.

Ah, bliss!

Happy Days.

L.S. Fellows

Author of Magic O’clock, A Fictional of Dementia and Hope

Writing a post on Christmas memories isn’t the easiest thing. Not because I don’t have some to share, but because I have a crap memory on a good day. A lot of my memories are the same. The gifts and things aren’t what stand out, but instead the time with family. Having family around to for good times, laughs, and good food. That’s what makes this holiday really special.

In trying to figure out what to share, one did come to me. My first Christmas with my husband. We got married in March of 2002 and I had our first son exactly nine months later in Dec. 2002. That Christmas was special because it was my first as a married woman, my husband and I was celebrating the birth of our first son just two weeks prior. He’s from AZ, so his parents and brother flew in to spend it with us. We only had a two-bedroom townhouse at the time, but we made it work. Lack of space, and being slightly crowded is worth the family time. My mother-in-law is that “idyllic” stereotypical grandmother type so it made me happy she could sit and snuggle with her grandson and spoil her newly acquired granddaughter (I came into the relationship with a daughter). I remember my mother-in-law being so happy to go down the Barbie aisle since she had two boys.

The husband and I are coming up on 16 years of marriage. We’ve had a lot of Christmases together since then. We’ve gone out to AZ to have time with the rest of his family, and they’ve come out to GA other years. I’m from GA so my family is all here, and we usually get together and spend time at someone’s house (mostly mine) to have fun and enjoy each other. That’s what makes the holidays special. This year will make another memory. My family just suffered a loss after my aunt lost her battle with cancer. We are coming together to support each other and celebrate in a way that my aunt would have wanted.

So, there you have it. I hope you and your family have a wonderful and joyous holiday season.

Meka James

Author of Not Broken (The Happily Ever After)

I’m the youngest of ten children. The sister closest in age to me is still ten years older than me. So, by the time I was a teen, most of my siblings had moved out the house and started their own families. But, we always spent Christmas together. My greatest holiday memory isn’t of presents or food. It’s the laughter I saw on everyone’s face as we sat around the table, laughing and talking loudly. Memories of material things fade over time. Memories of special moments with those you love last forever.

Siren Allen

Author of Cinderella & the Wolf Prince

Isn’t it funny how much life changes when you become parents? Every single little selfish indulgent we hold dear, suddenly does a 180 and life is no longer about getting unnecessary greedy goodies for yourself… and it’s amazing.  I now get to be the magic maker, the bringer of joy, the giver of memories. My husband and I get to mold our children’s Christmas recollection into the kind of fun every kid dreams of (to a respectable point, of course!) So, I’m taking my favorite memory back to a mere two years ago. My son was three and my daughter was a newborn. It was the first year that my son was tall enough in his car seat, and old enough to really absorb the Aww and Magic in the Christmas lights. The small gesture of driving around and looking at lit up and decorated homes that I once blew off as a mere common thing, for the first time transformed into a memory that I’ll cling to for the rest of my life. The way my toddler’s eyes widened, and his entire face lit up, glowing from every fiber of his being will forever be seared in mind. Every year since, including this one, is still so exciting looking at Christmas lights at night, but that very year is one that stands out above the rest. It was a pivotal point in the holidays for me. A time that I’ll never forget.

Didi Oviatt, Columnist/Writer

Author of Search for Maylee

My favorite Christmas memory has to be when my father–not a dog lover–was so moved by the Christmas spirit that he came to our family room with a puppy in his arms. Misty was my off-and-on best friend and snuggle companion. I was with her for her final breaths.

Mark Goodson, Writer/Blogger

The Miracle of the Mundane

Back when I was a kid growing up in Philadelphia, I loved when Christmastime arrived. It meant my dad and I would partake in one of our favourite holiday pastimes: visiting different parts of the city and checking out the Christmas lights. Every neighborhood had its own special character: the brick Colonial townhouses in historic Old City and Society Hill rarely had multicolored flashing lights lining the roofs and windows–usually only white lights or flame-free candles in the windows; the Italian-Portuguese enclaves in South Philly went all-out with the brightest lights you could find and nativity scenes taking center stage; in our neighbourhood in West Philly, it was always go bold or go home with nearly every inch of houses covered in lights. My mom always kept our decorations more lowkey and understated. She hated when there were too many lights on a house. My favourite place to visit was Chestnut Hill in the northwestern section of the city. The trees were strung with white lights the houses all had big wreathes on the front doors and in the windows, porches were lined with lights, so they stood out in the winter darkness. And sometimes you had a glimpse of beautifully decorated Christmas trees through the windows and the scene was like something out of a movie. I used to imagine living in one of those big historic homes and inviting friends and relatives for Christmas dinner there. And after my dad and I would take these excursions around the city, we’d go to a diner for hot chocolate or eggnog milkshakes and a slice of pie. Maybe that was my favourite part, actually. Because it was nice to have my dad to myself.

Merry Christmas!

Kimberly Golden Malmgren writing as Kim Golden

Author of The Maybe… series

Two Christmas memories remain with me. The first memory happened when I was seven years old. We had just moved into a tiny house and my stepfather had lost his job. My mother told the three of us, she would get us something for Christmas after the New Year. We didn’t even have a tree. On Christmas Eve, two women came to our house with toys. I learned later they were my father’s sisters. One of my mother’s sisters had told them, I would not have anything for Christmas, so they bought toys. The second memory was Christmas Eve 1990. My son served as an acolyte at the 5 pm service, so I did not schedule him to serve the midnight service. We were lining up to process in for the midnight service when he rushed in and got into his vestments. He had taken the bus over to the church. He said it was not Christmas Eve if we were not serving together. My fifteen-year-old came to be with me when he could have stayed home and watched television. That special moment I will never forget. Gifts are given in so many ways.

Ida Louise Johnson writing as Ivy Jade

Many thanks to my friends for taking the time to share their precious memories. I hope you enjoyed them as much as I did.

And I hope you’re enjoying this Christmas Day, perhaps even looking back on your own favorite holiday memories.

And making new ones.

Merry Christmas!

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