It always seems like Christmas starts earlier each year. Once Halloween is over – and sometimes before Halloween festivities have begun – stores are getting decked out in Christmas decorations, and Christmas music finds its way on the airwaves. There is an excitement about Christmas. It is a time when we celebrate Jesus’ birth, and we often celebrate Jesus’ birth through a series of various traditions. Maybe your family reads the story of Jesus’ birth, or sings Christmas carols, or wraps up gifts for those less fortunate.
There are many Christmas traditions, both Christian and commercial, that most people are familiar with, but they might not necessarily know the origins of. For example, most people are familiar with The Nutcracker, but not everyone knows how the story came to be. Ace Collins’ book Stories Behind the Great Traditions of Christmas explores the backstory and historical significance of many common Christmas traditions. From advent, the angels, to Handel’s Messiah, readers learn about great traditions related to Christmas in great depth. Some of my favorite chapters delved into nativity scenes and Christmas pageants, classic Christmas movies, and the history of Santa Clause. The book is very informative, and it is a great book to pick up and learn from during the holiday season.