Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Winter Solstice Arrives

Well it's that time of year again for the winter solstice. I'm happy because there are only longer days ahead and that's exactly what I like to see. I know there are some weird gatherings and crazy rituals people do. Others celebrate with an evening concert or party.

Being from a swimming background, I think these guys are darn crazy. I've had to swim in cold weather because the heater was broken. I've had to get into a freezing pool at 4:30am when it's about 0C outside and your bed is a lot warmer than the 20C plus inside that pool. I hated that feeling of jumping into that swimming pool. Adrenaline and showman ship are probably why they do such crazy acts in the winter months.

I found a pretty cool winter solstice quiz.

1. The Romans honored the Winter Solstice with a festival called Saturnalia. During this celebration:
2. The Scandinavian barbarians held a festival called Jiuleis to celebrate the solstice. Can you guess what popular custom came from this feast?
3. Did you know that many of the ancient ruins we visit were built to celebrate solstices? Which of the following temples honors the Winter Solstice?
4. In Norse mythology, Balder, the god of the summer sun, was killed by an arrow made of a now popular Christmas leaf. Which one was it?
5. Many of the traditions associated with Christmas actually come from the pagan worship of the Winter Solstice. Which of the following festivals involves the custom of giving presents?

Now take the quiz and see how you did or take a few more quizzes along with your children. Originally I didn't remember anything, but after taking the quiz a second time I did wonderful. :) haha...

I'm curious to know of any winter solistice traditions you have encountered or celebrate. I'm sure the next day or so will be filled will a few funny tails and thereafter. Here's a pretty good run down from all over the world including Europe.

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