Finally, another holiday season is over. Is the word finally really needed, you ask? Yes!!!!(extra exclamation points necessary) By this time of year, I have had it with the holidays and everything about them. And if you’re wondering why I am posting this on January 24th, it is because I was sick for one and a half weeks and put away my tree and decorations a few days ago.
In case you have never heard of Three Kings Day, let me introduce you to the holiday I now prefer to celebrate. It is also known as Epiphany or El Dia de Reyes. It happens every year on January 6th. The story says this is when the Three Kings brought gifts to baby Jesus. I do not want to inaccurately report the details about the history, so click on the link above to explore if you feel your knowledge of this day is lacking.
So you’re probably wondering why I started celebrating this holiday. Here are my top 13 (why 13? It is the year 2013 and my favorite number) reasons why I like to celebrate Three Kings Day:
1. The Christmas Season is entirely too focused on materialism. Yes, we give gifts on this day, but the hype in our household is minimal and we are not inundated with messages to spend (and spend some more!) for Three Kings Day.
2. There is no set way you have to decorate. We put up a tree (only because I inherited a ton of ornaments from my childhood), but we NEVER decorate with red and green because those happen to be the ugliest two colors you can put together (even on a Catholic school uniform).
3. There are very few songs related to this holiday, thus no need to send your eardrums to the Loony Bin for overkill. Seriously, don’t you get sick of listening to the nine versions of Jingle Bell Rock and Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas when it is not even snowing outside?
4. No creepy, tear-filled, and scary moments (yet often hilarious looking pictures) with Santa.
5. Kings in Robes – cool. Fat Guy in a red suit with a big belly – not.
6. I don’t have to rush to get cards in the mail. Our cards say Happy Holidays in English and Spanish and I work on them at the end of December.
7. My husband is from Spain and this is what they do to celebrate the Christmas season. When you marry someone from another culture you have to decide what celebrations you will embrace for your family.
8. I like to be unique. No one else I know here in the States (except our downstairs neighbors, who also happen to be from Spain) celebrates Three Kings Day.
9. AFTER CHRISTMAS SALES!!! Okay, they are not that exciting, but are sometimes helpful.
10. No crazy holiday shoppers to contend with.
11. We get to put our shoes out the night before, as this is where the gifts are left. This year I told my kids I was planning to put out my tall boots. They were jealous because they thought it was unfair I had more space to receive my candy in.
12. No clean up! You heard me.Each gift is left unwrapped next to each family members’ shoes. Wrapping paper , bows and gift tags (*sigh* I kind of like wrapping gifts and sometimes putting a tiny gift in a big box) unnecessary.
13. Eating Roscon de Reyes and chewing each bite carefully.It is tradition to hide a small trinket inside the cake for good luck. Although for some reason the bakeries in Chicago hide ugly plastic babies in their cakes.
Have I converted you? Doesn’t this sound better than what has become a typical American Christmas?
And since we just ended the season of “Gift” giving, check in soon for a new post on what sorts of “gifts” I gave myself this year.