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By Aunt Mo12/15/2010
On December 13th, there are officially 12 days left until Christmas! A fun and creative Christmas tradition I remember from my childhood is called "The Twelve Days of Christmas. It all starts on December 13th and continues up until Christmas Eve, December 24th. My favorite "12 Days of Christmas" is to leave one nativity piece each night and at the end of the 12 days the family will have a complete nativity scene.
I have done this for my mother-in-law for years:
Start on December 14th
Day 1 - Pin
Day 2 - Pair of gloves
Day 3 - Picture of the grandkids (three)
Day 4 - Food pack of four items (like jelly)
Day 5 - Family picture
Day 6 - Reese's christmas trees (six pack)
Day 7 - Lucky 7 lottery tickets
Day 8 - 8 oz soap bath & body works
Day 9 - Cafe vienna cooffee (9 oz)
Day 10 - ten of anything
Day 11 - Eleven of anything
Day 12 - Calendar
By Pami 12/08/2010
Our Sunday School class has done this for the past 3 years. Some ideas are: day 1, pears and a bird ornament; day 5, gold napkin rings and some pretty napkins; day 8, carton of milk and cleaning supplies; day 7, gift certificates to a local swimming club; day 3, 3 cornish hens decorated with little tiny paper french berets; day 6, carton of eggs and maybe cooking ingredients. This gives you something to go from. We always do it secretly. On the last day (Christmas Eve) we always have made a larger gift basket filled with like movies, snacks, maybe some gift/gas cards, etc.
The Twelve Days of Christmas STARTS ON Christmas Day! "On the first day of Christmas my True Love gave to me... A Partridge in a Pear Tree" That is symbolism for God (True Love) gave us his only son Jesus (A partridge in a pear tree) who died on the cross for us.
And goes to Epiphany.
I would not have commented on such an old thread seeing that is was started in 2004, but it is one of the first things that came up in a search and I wanted to put the record straight... hopefully.
Here are the others and the origin via - http://www.byrum.org/misc/christmas/origin.html:
You're all familiar with the Christmas song, "The Twelve Days of Christmas" I think. To most it's a delightful nonsense rhyme set to music. But it had a quite serious purpose when it was written.
It is a good deal more than just a repetitious melody with pretty phrases and a list of strange gifts.
Catholics in England during the period 1558 to 1829, when Parliament finally emancipated Catholics in England, were prohibited from ANY practice of their faith by law - private OR public. It was a crime to BE a Catholic.
"The Twelve Days of Christmas" was written in England as one of the "catechism songs" to help young Catholics learn the tenets of their faith - a memory aid, when to be caught with anything in *writing* indicating adherence to the Catholic faith could not only get you imprisoned, it could get you hanged, or shortened by a head - or hanged, drawn and quartered, a rather peculiar and ghastly punishment I'm not aware was ever practiced anywhere else. Hanging, drawing and quartering involved hanging a person by the neck until they had almost, but not quite, suffocated to death; then the party was taken down from the gallows, and disembowelled while still alive; and while the entrails were still lying on the street, where the executioners stomped all over them, the victim was tied to four large farm horses, and literally torn into five parts - one to each limb and the remaining torso.
The songs gifts are hidden meanings to the teachings of the faith. The "true love" mentioned in the song doesn't refer to an earthly suitor, it refers to God Himself. The "me" who receives the presents refers to every baptized person. The partridge in a pear tree is Jesus Christ, the Son of God. In the song, Christ is symbolically presented as a mother partridge which feigns injury to decoy predators from her helpless nestlings, much in memory of the expression of Christ's sadness over the fate of Jerusalem: "Jerusalem! Jerusalem! How often would I have sheltered thee under my wings, as a hen does her chicks, but thou wouldst not have it so..."
The other symbols mean the following:
2 Turtle Doves = The Old and New Testaments
3 French Hens = Faith, Hope and Charity, the Theological Virtues
4 Calling Birds = the Four Gospels and/or the Four Evangelists
5 Golden Rings = The first Five Books of the Old Testament, the "Pentateuch", which gives the history of man's fall from grace.
6 Geese A-laying = the six days of creation
7 Swans A-swimming = the seven gifts of the Holy Spirit, the seven sacraments
8 Maids A-milking = the eight beatitudes
9 Ladies Dancing = the nine Fruits of the Holy Spirit
10 Lords A-leaping = the ten commandments
11 Pipers Piping = the eleven faithful apostles
12 Drummers Drumming = the twelve points of doctrine in the Apostle's Creed
Here are questions related to 12 Days of Christmas Ideas.
I have a family of 2 moms and 2 daughters. I would like to surprise them with 12 Days of Christmas gifts left at their door step, without them knowing who it is. I am the worst gift buyer ever. Any thoughts?
By Kasey S.
By Judy = Oklahoma 11/15/2011
Great idea & how nice of you!
tea bags & mugs
cocoa, marshmallows & mugs
a bag of microwave popcorn for each & a bottle of popcorn seasoning
sugar cookies (store bought is ok) & frosting/sprinkles to decorate
a family video/dvd
little stockings with candy
gift certificates for small treats (McDonalds for a box of cookies or happy meal,krispy kreme,etc)
Just take a leisurely stroll through the store & see what you can come up with, you never know what you'll find.
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Several friends and I are planning on doing the 12 Days of Christmas for a lady who really needs some pampering right now. She is sole care-giver to her husband, who is a double amputee, has diabetes and is on dialysis everyday. We are wondering what are some things we could give her to correspond to each of the 12 days. Doesn't have to be fancy or expensive, can be cute or funny. Just something to let her know we are thinking about her. Any suggestions? We will be starting on the 14th of December, so time is of the essence. Thanks, Connie from TX
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