Monday, December 21, 2009

Winter Solstice.

Today, December 21, 2009 is Winter Solstice, the shortest and darkest day of the year.

When I first became interested in my family's genealogy and history, going back to Ireland and Scotland, I learned a lot about Celtic and Pagan traditions. I learned about a place in Ireland called Newgrange. It is one of the most famous prehistoric sites in the world. It is approximately 5,000 years old, and predates Stonehenge by about 1,000 years. Newgrange was designed so that on the shortest day of the year, the sunrise would shine all the way down the passage and illuminate the room at the end of a 60 foot long passage for 17 minutes. It is a true marvel of history and construction. You can read more about Newgrange at Knowth.com

You can read all about the Pagan origins of Christmas at these sites:
zenzibar.com
Pagan roots of Christmas
Christmas
ReligiousTolerance.org
suite101.com's paganismwicca
circlesanctuary.org

Earlier today we opened a few Solstice presents from Nanna and Grandma Vickey and Granddad Purcell. Nid burned some CDs for the kids and I gave everyone an ornament with their first initial on that I had bought last year and brought with me. It will be a new tradition for us, to have these ornaments on the tree every year.


After opening presents, we made kettle corn and cracked open the sweets Grandma Vickey sent and all sat down to watch It's A Wonderful Life. We've got a movie (or several cartoons) planned for each day this week. It's a movie that I watch every year. Nid had only seen it once as a child, and the children had never seen it. I was worried a little because it was made in 1946 and is 2 hours and 10 minutes, that the children would get bored, but they stuck it out and really seemed to enjoy it.

We topped off our day with a grand dinner!




A huge thank you to Nid for putting this all together for us.

You can see more photos HERE!

4 comments:

david said...

Sounds like you all had a great day Jenny. So thoughtfull of you to make those ornaments while still in the States! The movie sounded fun and the dinner looked great. And the kids got to open some early presents. So cool!! :)

Jenny said...

It was a great day. I do have to fess up though. I didn't actually make the ornaments. But I did go to two different Kohls in two different cities several times each trying to find all four letters!

midwesttomidlands said...

What a great idea, or many great ideas. I never thought about having a winter solstice party. I love the old Christmas movies, or any Christmas movies, they have been having a lot on TV lately - that is when I can get it off cricket! Wishing you a Merry Christmas to you and your family!

Jenny said...

My husband and stepchildren have always celebrated it, and I was completely on board with having another day this holiday season to have a great meal and together time. The family has never seen any American holiday movies, so I'm giving them a crash course! Thank you and Merry Christmas to you and your family as well!

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