January 6th, 2009 8:40 AM by Caren McCourt-Crane
We're full into our start for January, "the month of resolutions"!
What have YOU resolve to do this month?
Many homeowners, use this as a time to get their homes and lives organized. I know I saw many people taking down Christmas lights this past week and that was a good thing given that our weather quickly became colder for this week and it looks like Thursday may our only warm moment for the week.
You might be looking at some of your neighbors wondering why their lights are still up and shining. For some, their religious beliefs warrant that the Christmas celebration still continues until the "Feast of the Three Kings" which is today, Tuesday, January 6th, 2009. Some celebrated this feast, or the Epiphany, this past Sunday while some are full on honoring the traditional day which is 12 days after Christmas.
In Philippine tradition, children on the eve of the Feast of the Three Kings hang socks by the windows and on bannisters of staircases, for gifts. For many cultures and Catholic communities around the world, the Christmas season is not complete until Epiphany or Twelfth Night, when tradition says the three kings, or wise men, came with gifts for the newborn Jesus.In fact, Jan. 6 used to be the day when gifts were exchanged and children opened presents ---- before Santa Claus took over the holiday. Even today, in Spain, children put out shoes stuffed with hay for the Three Kings' horses, so the wise men will leave gifts in exchange for the hay. And in Mexico, children still write letters to the wise men, sending the notes up in a party balloon on the evening before Epiphany, when gifts are found on their beds the next morning.For food lovers, though, the most important part of the Jan. 6 celebration may be the cake, called a king cake in New Orleans, a rosca de reyes in Spanish and a galette des rois in French. In any language, all these cakes have a small charm, coin or figurine tucked in the dough, though the style of the cakes differs. (Excerpt from article by Ruth Marvin Webster).
So, happy feast of three kings day to everyone observing and honoring the celebration today! I happen to believe that anything that can keep the Christmas spirit with us a little longer and make it a little more meaningful, to all, is a good thing!