Fruitcake and Your Pup

Today is officially fruitcake day!! As you eat your delicious cake, try and keep it to yourself, as your favorite four legged buddy should not eat it. If you are wondering why, well, not only the alcohol contained in these dense cakes can cause a problem, but if it doesn’t the raisins, currants and yeast most definitely will.

fruitcake

Raisins and currants can be highly toxic to your dog’s kidney. Certain breeds are more sensitive than others and since scientists have yet to figure out which toxin is the culprit, it’s best to beware. Dogs that are affected can end up with potentially fatal acute renal (kidney) failure. If you would like to read more on how fruitcake is hazardous to  your dogs health, click here.

Merry Christmas

Have you ever considered why we celebrate the birth of Christ on December 25? No one knows the real birthday of Jesus, a date is not given in the Bible. The first recorded date of Christmas being celebrated on December 25 was in 336 A.D. during the time of the Roman Emperor Constantine (he was the first Christian Roman Emperor). A few years later, Pope Julius I officially declared that the birth of Jesus would be celebrated on the 25th of December.

There are many different traditions and theories as to why Christmas is celebrated on December 25th. A very early Christian tradition said that the day Mary was told she would have Jesus (called the Annunciation) was on March 25th – and is still celebrated today on the 25th of March.  Nine months after is December 25th, continue reading here.

A very Merry Christmas to you and your family!!! I hope it is a joyous day for you!

“Twas The Night Before Christmas” Mock Trial

“Twas The Night Before Christmas” a popular poem heard this time of year, most of us can recite at least some of it, but did you know it is clouded by mystery. You see, the real author of the poem is unknown. One Christmas, some residents of Troy, NY decided to hold a mock trial to see if they could figure out who the real author was. The contested authors were Clement Moore and Henry Livingston. The famous line, “Twas The Night Before Christmas” actually comes from the poem “A Visit from St. Nicholas.” The poem was first published anonymously in the Troy Sentinel Newspaper on December 23, 1823 in Albany, New York.

Here is a look at the article that talks about the mock trial, and what the outcome was. Read on for ‘trial” results, and have a Merry Christmas!

Community Christmas Lights

Grab the kids, a thermos full of hot cocoa, some blankets and hit the town tonight and check our the BEST COMMUNITY CHRISTMAS LIGHTS IN MODESTO – Here’s the list, map and preview of the house – Sing some carols while you’re out there, and be sure to stay warm though, the weather is changing on us!

Christmas Caroling

Have you ever wondered where did the tradition of going around in the freezing cold singing songs on friend’s doorsteps began. Turns out early Christians took this once pagan tradition over. Carols (the word originally meant “to dance around something”) were first sung in Europe, they were pagan songs, sung at Winter Solstice (December 21 this year) as people danced around stone circles. The Roman Catholic church ordered a song called the “Angel’s Hymm” be sung in about 129 A.D.  Read more on the history here.

Top Christmas Gifts From Pets

We receive companionship, peace, laughter and entertainment from our four-legged friends, so here’s our chance to give back.  I found this website with everything from Pet Selfie Sticks, to the famous “Woof Washer” and everything in between! And if you are familiar with Birchbox there’s “Barkbox” for your pup!

barkbox

If you are as close to your dog as I am to Melky, you might want to consider getting your dog insured, especially those pure breeds. Here is a link to the reasons that you should consider this for your animal!

Christmas Card Day

I’m sure the intent is to get those snail mail cards in the U.S. Postal Services hands, or maybe you have already. Did you know the greeting card industry takes in about $7 billion annually, and that the average card cost around $4.  Christmas cards account for 75% of the overall annual card revenue.

 

jibjabchrismtas

But maybe you’d like to send a digital greeting card this year?  If you do, you’ll join the “new” tech savvy group that’s responsible for a 5% annual drop in traditional card sales.  Which digital cards to send?  Here’s a pretty nice review of the Top 10 U.S. online greeting card apps… Imagine a JibJab of your family?  LOL!!

Santa’s List, and The Elf On A Shelf

Love them or not we all need lists. Back in 2005 Santa took on a bunch of helpers to get a handle on that “naughty” and “nice” list, with “Elf on a Shelf”. Twelve years later this tradition that has parents placing a stuffed elf all over the house each day in December, so that the elf may watch over the kids, and report back to the North Pole. The tradition was birthed by the mother-daughter duo Carol Aebersold and Chanda Bell, their idea for an illustrated children’s book about elves from Santa’s workshop who act as scouts and report back on children’s behavior. The pair launched the Elf on the Shelf book which quickly became a #1 best seller, a movie and a marketing phenomenon! Read more about how it all came to be, and why it has remained so popular.santas-list

The First Day of Advent

The first day of Advent – Could also be 24 days of Christmas travel. You can ditch the shopping frenzy and hit the road, slopes or the beach.  I found an awesome website that takes you all over the world for fun in November and December.  Bobsledding in Norway, the beach in Australia, penguin watching in Chile, a hot smoke sauna in Estonia, or even a Siberian Tiger tour in Russia and so much more.

I deserved a big grin after all the Thanksgiving festivities and commercials.  Thought you might too.  This is not your typical travel site.