There's always a lot to do on Christmas Day from the time you step foot out of bed until the moment you collapse back into it that night. It seems like you get up with on fast speed and you just don't get to slow down even for a minute. You want to know how to make Christmas day special but it seems so hard with everything going on. Don't get so caught up in the social events of Christmas Day that you forget about the reason why we celebrate the holiday to start with. We celebrate Christmas Day by spending time with the people we care about, but if were not careful, the people who mean the most to us can get lost in the shuffle. Sure, the presents are nice and the food is great, but that's not all there is to Christmas Day. We get so busy visiting all the extended family members on both sides every Christmas Day that we forget to spend time with the ones in our own home. Set aside a block of time just for your family - your significant other, your children, whoever you share your home with. Just write even an hour into your schedule. You'll get time to spend with them as well as a break to recharge your batteries. Have a nice, simple meal together and listen to holiday music playing softly in the background. During the time spent with your family, you can play a game, catch up on one another's lives or spend time going through the year via the photographs you've taken and just reminiscing. Looking through old pictures reminds us of the good times we've had, the troubles we've overcome, and the joy of being a family. Refuse to cave in to the stress of knowing you have a lot to get done. Instead, keep your attention focused on one step at a time. Stress happens during Christmas but you don't have to let it take over. Don't rush through visiting the people you'd like to see. Make sure your schedule allows an equal amount of time for both sides of the family. Always begin your Christmas Day visiting by seeing the people you'd like to see first and then moving down the list. Instead of gathering in large groups and centering on food and talking, get involved as a group doing something for others. If you can't do something physically for others on Christmas Day, such as helping out at a shelter, do something financial on Christmas day. Have each family member make a contribution to a charity, to a children's home or to a struggling family in the community. Everyone can write a brief note and then drop the notes and the contributions off. It'll warm the hearts of both the giver and the receiver.
Every holiday season, retailers compete with one another to draw in the shoppers. They'll advertise in newspapers, television and on the radio for percentages off certain items or they'll give coupons for additional money off things that are already marked down. Consumers are hoping to find a great Christmas sale online. Online shopping stores are not really that much different than those housed in buildings that you can go to. Just like retail stores, they have to offer sales to make their merchandise more enticing for you to buy than their competition's merchandise. Now more than ever is the best time to look for great Christmas sales online. You can shop for what you want for every single person on your shopping list. From babies to tweens, teenagers to adults - there's something online that'll satisfy everyone. To get the best deals in online shops, you don't have to spread a bunch of newspaper ads out all over your kitchen table trying to figure out which one has the best sale. You don't have to clip coupons (that you sometimes forget and leave home anyway) and you don't have to bring in the newspaper ad to get the sale price when you shop online. You can do your comparison shopping by pulling up multiple store sites and checking the prices. If you're shopping for clothing, you'll be able to follow a size chart and pick out the size and color you'd like. There are no worries if you happen to receive an item and decide it's not right for you. All you have to do is return the item back to the online store and many stores even provide free return shipping. As for coupons, online stores offer percentages off as well. If you reside in a part of the United States or overseas where the weather doesn't always cooperate, you get the added bonus of not having to go out on ice slicked roads. You can shop sitting by a nice, crackling fire with a cup of coffee or cocoa in your hand. But like retail stores, online stores have great bargains and the savvy shopper will be on the lookout for those deals. Make sure you're constantly watching for sales and paying attention when the prices are good. You don't want to be one of the shoppers who luck out on great deals. With the money you'll save finding a great Christmas sale online, you can treat yourself to a few gifts, too. Once you're done with your shopping, all you have to do is wait for the delivery truck to arrive!
Each time the holiday season rolls around, people begin to think about picking out a Christmas tree that they'll carry home and decorate with their collection of ornaments. Most people usually head out to find a tree right around the time Thanksgiving rolls around, but you don't have to wait that long. You can get a tree before Thanksgiving and still keep it fresh and looking healthy and green through Christmas. You don't really want to put off buying a Christmas tree because all of the best ones go pretty fast. You can buy your tree from a lot and have a wide selection to choose from or you can shop at a Christmas tree farm. At the lot, you can tell which trees are healthy and fresh by the amount of needles that fall from the tree when it's handled. A few needles coming off is to be expected, but if you pick the tree up and it loses needles as fast as a hard rain can fall, it's not a good tree. You want the needles to be pliant and have a nice, fresh scent to them. If you choose to go pick up a tree at a Christmas tree farm, you can pick out your tree and even cut it down yourself. Often, the prices of a tree at a Christmas tree farm is less expensive than buying one from the lot - plus you can turn the event into a family outing. Once you decide where you're going to buy your tree, then you need to know the best kind of tree you should purchase. There are several top choice trees to choose from, but you want to make sure you get the one that suits your decorating needs. In the Fir family, there's the White Fir. If you want to get a tree before Thanksgiving, this is a good choice. The needles last longer and the tree has a good scent. Also in the Fir family is the Fraser Fir and decorating this tree is a breeze because the branches are not overly crowded. That's one thing you have to look for when picking up a tree. You don't want one where the branches are crowded in too closely. It'll be too hard to get your hands in among the branches to hang your ornaments and other decorations. Another lovely scented tree in the Fir group is the Balsam Fir and it's one that many people recognize due to the strong, fresh scent. There's also the Grand Fir, but this is a tree better chosen for ornaments that are lighter. The Noble Fir is good for decorating and is quite sturdy. In the Spruce tree family, the Colorado Blue Spruce is considered a good choice for heavy or light ornaments. The Norway Spruce, however, has easily dropped needles - so don't purchase this one too far in advance. The Eastern White Pine has easily bendable branches and with proper care, has a long life. The Scotch Pine has very sharp needles, but doesn't shed easily, so if you don't want to vacuum up needles, this one is a good pick. Whichever Christmas tree you choose, when you get it home, be sure to cut off a small part of the base (about a quarter inch). Never let the water level of the tree get too low. This can cause your tree to dry out and lose needles.
Many people celebrate the holiday, but few know the history of why people have Christmas trees as part of the decor. Having trees as part of Christmas did not begin as an American custom. The practice of setting up a Christmas tree first began as early as the 1500s as a German custom but the idea wasn't widely accepted in the beginning. Many areas of Germany didn't start celebrating the Christmas holidays with a tree until the later part of the 1800s. Overseas, by the first of the 1900s, two classes of people - the wealthy and royalty- started putting up Christmas trees and from there, the tradition was born. When the first wave of people left their country and came and settled in the New World, many brought with them the tradition of putting up evergreens inside their home and decorating small trees outside the home with whatever treasures nature provided. Here in America however, the Christmas tree was much slower to catch on. Some people thought the Christmas tree was a symbol associated with Christians, but Christians were not open to the idea of having a tree in the midst of their holiday celebration. It was regarded with suspicion and religious people believed the tree to be a symbol of paganism even though that belief was incorrect. Because of that belief, many Christians refused to have anything to do with Christmas trees. But slowly, the custom caught on. Christmas trees first began to be marketed in the United States in the mid 1800s and were also accepted into the White House by the then residing President. Christmas trees were set up in public displays, trimmed with decorations and people were awed by the beauty. Toward the latter part of the 1800s a well known retail store saw the need for artificial trees and began selling them to customers. In some countries, Winter Solstice heralded the time to set up the Christmas tree-close to the arrival of Christmas day. The first week of January was slated as time to remove the tree and all its trimmings. Today, the Christmas tree is customarily set up shortly after the Thanksgiving holiday but some families set it up earlier. Taking down the tree is generally still done the first week of January but some families wait until after New Years Day. This is due to the old wives tale that what you're doing on January 1, you'll do all year long. Since taking down the tree is hard work, folks believed that by taking it down then, that meant they would work hard all year long. Whether the tree is put up after Thanksgiving or taken down after New Year's Day, this is one custom that is loved and practiced by many. A Christmas tree can add a bright sparkle to your holidays, a well decorated, celebrated finishing touch.