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Yes, technically speaking…Christmas is upon us. Our heating bills are going up. We have pulled out our winter clothes. Planning for the biggest shopping season of the year has arrived.
I don’t know about you, but I personally like to avoid the malls. There may be some people that enjoy searching endlessly for parking spots, or waiting in long lines…that’s certainly not me. I have pondered a way to complete Christmas shopping while having fun.
The answer ‘Came Upon a Midnight Clear’! Family Jingle & Mingle has an AWESOME area with discounted shopping at The International Centre. There will be lots of gift ideas to choose from including electronics, novelty items, jewellery, skin care, household goods, accessories, clothing and more! And get this….anything purchased at Family Jingle & Mingle will be wrapped for free. That’s right…FREE! (thanks to First Class Homecare)
While you shop, you can enjoy top notch entertainment and exciting activities. There will be some fabulous walk around characters including two famous mice, fairy princesses and Batman! One day only…December 8, 2013 from 10-5. Parking is free! Free gift bags for the first 500 adults.
So why not come out and save money, experience fun shopping, and get it all wrapped? A Christmas experience like no other. And yes, I will for sure be decking the halls and skipping the malls this year. Visit The International Centre on Dec. 8 from 10-5. 6900 Airport Road, Entrance 6. www.jingleandmingle.ca.
Written by: Gaby Mammone
All over the world, Christmas celebrations reflect local culture and traditions. The festivities can be startlingly different from country to country, focusing on different aspects of the nativity story.
Here’s a sample of what I have discovered:
Christmas in Australia: December 25 falls during summer vacation, so many of the country’s Christmas festivities take place outdoors. The most popular event of the Christmas season is called Carols by Candlelight. People come together at night to light candles and sing Christmas carols outside.
Christmas in China: Christians in China call Christmas Sheng Dan Jieh, which means Holy Birth Festival. They decorate their homes with evergreens, posters, and bright paper chains. Families put up a tree, called a “tree of light,” and decorate it with lanterns, flowers, and red paper chains that symbolize happiness. They also light their houses with paper lanterns.
Christmas in England: It is cold, wet, and foggy in England at Christmastime. The day before Christmas is they wrap presents, bake cookies, and hang stockings over the fireplace. Then everyone gathers around the tree as someone tells a classic holiday story. Children write a letter to Father Christmas with their wishes and toss their letter into the fire so their wishes can go up the chimney.
Christmas in Italy: The Christmas season in Italy begins on the first Sunday of Advent, which is four Sundays before Christmas. Christmas features fireworks and bonfires along with holiday music. Families go to the Christmas markets to shop for gifts. Some families set up a Christmas tree and decorate it. Families set up their presepio, or manger scene, on the first day of the novena. They gather before the presepio each morning or evening of novena to light candles and pray.
Christmas in Mexico: The weather is warm and mild in Mexico during the Christmas season. Families shop for gifts, ornaments, and good things to eat in the market stalls, called puestos. They decorate their homes with lilies and evergreens. Family members cut designs in brown paper bags to make lanterns, or farolitos. They place a candle inside and then set the farolitos along sidewalks, windowsills, on rooftops and outdoor walls to illuminate the community with the spirit of Christmas.
Trying to think of a fun Christmas party idea? Have a themed Christmas party!
Here are 5 ideas that will bring in the holiday cheer.
1. The Ugly Sweater Party
If you’ve managed to go this long without receiving some horrific Christmas sweater from one of your relatives, you may have to run to the nearest Wal-Mart and buy one to be a part of this holiday fashion faux pas. The pictures will be priceless!
2. Trim My Tree Party
First time setting up a Christmas tree at your home? Have guests bring one ornament to hang while listening to your favourite songs. Sip hot chocolate, dance, and add your favourite decorations to the tree as you ring in the holiday season.
3. The Wrap Party
Wrapping gifts can be frustrating. Throw a support group style gathering for your friends where everyone brings some supplies and their bundle of gifts. Turn up the music and have some fun!
4. The Holiday Movie Marathon
This is for sure a favourite. Get some of your friends to come over in their Christmas pajamas and movies they loved as a child. Keep it to a maximum of 4 movies in one night to avoid holiday overload.
5. 12 Days of Appetizers
By: Danielle Bastien
Whether you’re trimming the tree or heading out to a Christmas party, you’ll need the perfect soundtrack to get you in the festive spirit.
Here are the top Christmas songs of all time:
- Do You Hear What I Hear – Carrie Underwood
- It’s The Most Wonderful Time of The Year – Andy Williams
- Holly Night – Celine Dion
- White Christmas – Bing Crosby
- Holly Jolly Christmas – Burl Ives
- The First Noel – Karla Bonoff
- The Little Drummer Boy – Harry Simone Chorale
- It’s Beginning To Look A Lot Like Christmas – Johnny Mathis
- Sleigh Ride – Leroy Anderson
- Happy Xmas – War Is Over – John Lennon
- Winter Wonderland – Johnny Mathis
- Merry Christmas Darling – Carpenters
- Jingle Bell Rock – Bobby Helms
- Hark The Herald Angels Sing – Nat King Cole
- O’ Tannenbaum – Vince Guaraldi Trio
- I’ll Be Home For Christmas – Bing Crosby
- Rudolph The Red Noise Reindeer – Gene Autry
- God Rest Ye Merry, Gentleman – Mannheim Steamroller
- Happy Holiday/The Holiday Season – Andy Williams
- Let It Snow, Let It Snow, Let It Snow – Frank Sinatra
- Same Old Lang Style – Dan Fogelberg
- Rocking Around the Christmas Tree – Brenda Lee
- Feliz Navidad – Jose Feliciano
- Home For The Holidays – Carpenters
- Do They know it’s Christmas? – Band Aid