Wednesday, December 13, 2017

History of the 12 Day of Christmas (one version...there are many)

 The 12 Days of Christmas 

Drawing of a Partridge in a Pear Tree - The 12 Days of Christmas
The 12 Days of Christmas are now most famous as a song about someone receiving lots of presents from their 'true love'. However, to get to the song there had to be the days to start with!
The 12 Days of Christmas start on Christmas Day and last until the evening of the 5th January - also known as Twelfth Night. The 12 Days have been celebrated in Europe since before the middle ages and were a time of celebration.
The 12 Days each traditionally celebrate a feast day for a saint and/or have different celebrations:
  • Day 1 (25th December): Christmas Day - celebrating the Birth of Jesus
  • Day 2 (26th December also known as Boxing Day): St Stephen’s Day. He was the first Christian martyr (someone who dies for their faith). It's also the day when the Christmas Carol 'Good King Wenceslas' takes place.
  • Day 3 (27th December): St John the Apostle (One of Jesus's Disciples and friends)
  • Day 4 (28th December): The Feast of the Holy Innocents - when people remember the baby boys which King Herod killed when he was trying to find and kill the Baby Jesus.
  • Day 5 (29th December): St Thomas Becket. He was Archbishop of Canterbury in the 12th century and was murdered on 29th December 1170 for challenging the King’s authority over Church.
  • Day 6 (30th December): St Egwin of Worcester.
  • Day 7 (31st December): New Years Eve (known as Hogmanay in Scotland). Pope Sylvester I is traditionally celebrated on this day. He was one of the earliest popes (in the 4th Century). In many central and eastern European countries (including Austria, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, the Czech Republic, Germany, Hungary, Israel, Italy, Luxembourg, Poland, Slovakia, Switzerland and Slovenia) New Years Eve is still sometimes called 'Silvester'. In the UK, New Years Eve was a traditional day for ‘games’ and sporting competitions. Archery was a very popular sport and during the middle ages it was the law that it had to be practised by all men between ages 17-60 on Sunday after Church! This was so the King had lots of very good archers ready in case he need to go to war!
  • Day 8 (1st January): 1st January - Mary, the Mother of Jesus
  • Day 9 (2nd January): St. Basil the Great and St. Gregory Nazianzen, two important 4th century Christians.
  • Day 10 (3rd January): Feast of the Holy Name of Jesus. This remembers when Jesus was officially 'named' in the Jewish Temple. It's celebrated by different churches on a wide number of different dates!
  • Day 11 (4th January): St. Elizabeth Ann Seton, the first American saint, who lived in the 18th and 19th centuries. In the past it also celebrated the feast of Saint Simon Stylites (who lives on a small platform on the top of a pillar for 37 years!).
  • Day 12 (5th January also known as Epiphany Eve): St. John Neumann who was the first Bishop in American. He lived in the 19th century.

Twelfth Night

Twelfth Night was a big time of celebration with people holding large parties. During these parties, often the roles in society were reversed with the servants being served by the rich people. This dated back to medieval and Tudor times when Twelfth Night marked the end of 'winter' which had started on 31st October with All Hallows Eve (Halloween).
At the start of Twelfth Night the Twelfth Night cake was eaten. This was a rich cake made with eggs and butter, fruit, nuts and spices. The modern Italian Panettone is the cake we currently have that's most like the old Twelfth Night cake.
A dried pea or bean was cooked in the cake. Whoever found it was the Lord (or Lady) of Misrule for night. The Lord of Misrule led the celebrations and was dressed like a King (or Queen). This tradition goes back to the Roman celebrations of Saturnalia. In later times, from about the Georgian period onwards, to make the Twelfth Night 'gentile', two tokens were put in the cake (one for a man and one for a women) and whoever found them became the the 'King' and 'Queen' of the Twelfth Night party.
In English Cathedrals during the middle ages there was the custom of the 'Boy Bishop' where a boy from the Cathedral or monastery school was elected as a Bishop on 6th December (St Nicholas Day) and had the authority of a Bishop (except to perform Mass) until 28th December. King Henry VIII banned the practise in 1542 although it came back briefly under Mary I in 1552 but Elizabeth I finally stopped it during her reign.

The first monday after Christmas feast has finished was known as ‘Plough Monday’ as this was when farming work would all begin again!During Twelfth Night it was traditional for different types of pipes to be played, especially bagpipes. Lots of games were played including ones with eggs. These included tossing an egg between two people moving further apart during each throw - drop it and you lose and passing an egg around on spoons. Another popular game was 'snapdragon' where you picked raisins or other dried fruit out of a tray of flaming brandy!
In many parts of the UK, people also went Wassailing on Twelfth Night.
Twelfth Night is also known as Epiphany Eve. In many countries it's traditional to put the figures of the Wise Men/Three Kings into the Nativity Scene on Epiphany Eve ready to celebrate Epiphany on the 6th January.
It's also traditional to take your Christmas decorations down following Twelfth Night.
Twelfth Night is also the name of a famous play written by William Shakespeare. It's thought it was written in 1601/1602 and was first performed at Candlemas in 1602, although it wasn't published until 1623.

Lyrics of the 12 Days of Christmas

XRF 12days.jpg

Home Inspection Specialists

Specialist Wanted

Friday, December 1, 2017

Thursday, November 30, 2017

Santa Barbara Holiday Parade, Friday December 1

More than 65,000 spectators line State Street each year in anticipation of Santa Barbara’s only nighttime parade, the Annual Downtown Santa Barbara Holiday Parade! Officially kicking off the holiday season, this signature Downtown Santa Barbara event brings a colossal contingent of high-stepping marching bands, fabulous holiday-themed floats, spectacular performance groups, local personalities, and our soon to be announced Grand Marshal! The Holiday Prince and Fairy, selected from winning artwork best capturing the parade theme, lead the parade and light up the street on their way down the parade route.

When: Friday, December 1st, 6:30 pm

Where: State Street, from Sola to Cota

This year, we're celebrating the Colors of the Season via the many traditions, holidays, and colors of the Winter season. We are inspired by vibrant colors, kaleidoscopes, rainbows, and anything festively neon or colorful! For more inspiration, check our our style guide HERE. Share your ideas and pictures with our official hashtag #DSBHolidayParade.

Goodbye Income Tax Deductions

Goodbye Income Tax Deductions

Tuesday, November 28, 2017

23rd Annual La Arcada Plaza Christmas Walk 11/29

2017 La Arcada Christmas Walk

my favorite mini mall in all of the Santa Barbara area!

Thursday, November 23, 2017

37th Annual Holiday Faire, Carpinteria Saturday, November 25th

Open Date:

Sat, Nov 25, 2017

Close Date:

Sat, Nov 25, 2017

Showcasing the work of 85 participating artisans from throughout California, an exceptional variety of fine handicrafts await shoppers at the Carpinteria Valley Museum of History’s 37th Annual Holiday Faire to be held Saturday, November 25 from 10 a.m. until 3 p.m. on the museum grounds at 956 Maple Avenue. Some of the unique all hand-crafted gifts offered for sale will include country crafts & toys, fine jewelry, knitted and crocheted clothing & accessories, stained and fused glass creations, garden art, children’s and baby gifts, and Christmas ornaments, decorations, and wreaths. From ceramics, succulent dish gardens, and exotic wooden bowls to original photography, oil, and watercolor paintings, this year’s Faire promises art for everyone’s tastes and pocket-book. There will be a variety of refreshments, including hot foods and fresh home baked goodies. Enjoy live bluegrass and Irish folk music while the children indulge in fantastic face-painting or share their Christmas wishes and candy canes with Santa Claus! You may call the museum at 684-3112 for more information. Admission is free to this fun, family faire!


956 Maple Avenue


Additional Features:
Crafts, Entertainment Children's, Entertainment Free, Food, Music
Sat. 10am-3pm
Phone Number:
(805) 684-3112

Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Santa Barbara Zoo Pumpkin Smash November 23

Thanksgiving Day Pumpkin Smash

Animal lovers are encouraged to get the kids out of the house this Thanksgiving and come to the Zoo for a smashin’ good time! Watch as the elephants, gorillas, and other Zoo animals play and interact with pumpkins.
Cost: free with Zoo admission. 
The Zoo closes early today, at 3:30 p.m.

Happy Thanksgiving

Give Thanks
for each new morning
with its light
for rest and shelter
of the night
for health and food
for friends and love
For Everything
thy goodness sends

Ralph Waldo Emerson

Friday, November 17, 2017

Santa Barbara's Prime Time Band Free Concert Sunday, November 19

Prime Time Band's Winter Concert, Sunday, November 19 at 2 pm
Program will consist of "Star Trek into Darkness," Where Never Lark or Eagle Flew," Hollywood, March of the Trolls," "Kentucky 1800" and many others.
Directed by Jeffrey Peterson
San Marcos High School Auditorium
4750 Hollister Avenue, Santa Barbara

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Romance of Orchids Show & Sale Saturday, Nov. 19 and Sunday, Nov. 20

Orchid Society of Santa Barbara Romance of Orchids Show & Sale

Be sure to attend this wonderful event.  My  Orchids are beginning to bloom! Such magic!!

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

Santa Barbara Taco Trail

300 Days of sunshine. 365 Days of Tacos. #SavorSB

I don't know who to credit for this wonderful Tour of Santa Barbara's best Tacos.  If any of my readers recognize the designer of this please let me know. I would be happy to give them credit.

Monday, October 23, 2017

Saturday , October 28th 3 pm, THRILLER 2017

thrill 2017 1

! ! Sunken dance roar Hongjun Zhou

On Saturday, Oct. 28th at 3:00pm, hundreds of World Dance Zombies will rise from the lawn of Santa Barbara’s stunning Courthouse Sunken Gardens to perform a simplified version of Michael Jackson’s iconic dance. We’ll be dancing simultaneously with groups all over the world as part of a global event,
Thrill the World. This will be the 7th year World Dance for Humanity is hosting the experience, which will include flashmobs all over town leading up to Halloween.
On Sunday, Oct. 29th, we’ll take Thriller to Santa Ynez Valley, with flashmobs in the town squares and wineries, culminating in a Michael Jackson tribute at the gates of Neverland and a funk soul dance party at Cold Spring Tavern. For the first time, we’ll also be teaching and performing Thriller and doing flashmobs in Carpinteria in partnership with the Carpinteria Art Center.
No dance experience needed – all ages and abilities are welcome!
Individuals, schools, dance studios, and community groups are all invited to join us.
Contact Janet to Register or for more info
See New Thriller 2017 Photos!

See Thriller 2016 at the Sunken Gardens
See Practice Videos


Friday, October 13, 2017

CALM's Antique and Vintage Show , October 13, 14, 15

13, 14 & 15 2017

Friday & Saturday 11 a.m.-6 p.m.
Sunday 11 a.m.-4 p.m.

At the Earl Warren Showgrounds
(Highway 101 at Las PositaS

Thursday, October 12, 2017

Pianos On State, through October 16

BIG NEWS: Pianos on State is here, and it's the longest run of Pianos on State ever! Celebrate a community collaboration of bridging visual arts, music, performance, and YOU! Pianos are displayed along State Street, in the Funk Zone and at a permanent display at the Santa Barbara Airport.
The pianos become alive with artwork by local artists and impromptu performances by musicians young and old! Check out all 11 locations for the artistically diverse pianos, and plunk out a tune or two, through October 16th.

Thursday, October 5, 2017

AVOFEST in Carpinteria, October 6, 7, 8

Avocado Festival, October 6, 7, 8
Three Days of Celebration

Avofest is one of the largest free festivals in California.  Proudly boasting 3 days of fabulous food, and a premier line-up of music. A great family Experience in beautiful Carpinteria.

Venue Information


At the Main Entrance of the Festival (Carpinteria Ave and Linden Ave) you will find the Avocado EXPO Tent!  The AvoEXPO TENT is home to Avocado agricultural photos, historical photos, lessons in avocado grafting, FFA restored antique tractors, and the Largest Avocado Contest.

The Avocado Festival is home to the WORLD’S LARGEST Vat of Guacamole!  Our FOOD VENUE, that has plenty of creative avocado dishes, can be found on the 800 block of Linden, so come hungry!!

Venture a bit deeper and to find the COMMERCIAL MARKETPLACE on both the 900 and 700 blocks of Linden, and FESTIVAL MERCHANDISE on the corner of Linden and 8th Street.

You and your family can also head to 7th Street to visit our KIDS VENUE, home of the Best Dressed Avocado Contest! There will be lots of fun games, face painting, and activities for all to enjoy!

Our ARTS & CRAFTS VENUE on Linden’s 600 block is open for your enjoyment during Saturday and Sunday of the festival!  All crafts are handmade by the artist(s) themselves.

We are one of the largest FREE festivals in California with over 75 MUSIC ACTS on FOUR stages. We will not disappoint this year!!  Check out our “Entertainment” tab for more info and line-up updates! You can also find them on our Facebook Page in early September.

Don’t miss the World Famous Guacamole contest and

Artist Emily Crosby

for more details, click here

Tuesday, October 3, 2017

Santa Barbara Maritime Museum Tall Ship Public Sail 10-14-17

Spirit of Dana Point Tall Ship Public Sail during the Harbor Seafood Festival

Sat, October 14, 2017 - 11:00am

Santa Barbara Maritime Museum

Spirit of Dana Point Tall Ship Public Sail during the Harbor Seafood Festival

The Santa Barbara Maritime Museum in collaboration with the Ocean Institute will offer dockside tours and a public sail aboard the tall ship Spirit of Dana Point.
Saturday • October 14, 2017
Spirit of Dana Point • Dockside Tours
11:00 am – 3:00 pm Free to the Public
Come aboard the replica of a 1770s privateer used during the American Revolution and explore the 118’ long and 100’ high (mainmast) vessel and experience what life would be like at sea hundreds of years ago.
Spirit of Dana Point • Public Sail
Check in at 3:00 pm and Sail from 3:30 pm to 5:30 pm
Tickets for the Public Sail:  $50 (adults), $20 (children under 12)
Register here or call Museum Store (805) 456-8747
Please reserve early (tickets sell out quickly)
The Spirit of Dana Point will be docked at the Santa Barbara Harbor City Pier located near the Santa Barbara Maritime Museum, 113 Harbor Way, Santa Barbara, California.
This one-day opportunity to tour the tall ship Spirit of Dana Point and take a sail is part of the Santa Barbara Maritime Museum’s October Spirit of Dana Point Tall Ship Overnight Education Program. Every October the Museum hosts the Spirit of Dana Point Tall Ship Overnight Education Program in collaboration with the Ocean Institute. The Spirit Program is based upon Richard Henry Dana’s book, Two Years Before the Mast and the Maritime Museum offers this program to local schools. Accompanied by adult crew members playing the parts of the book’s characters, fourth–grade students, who are studying California history, experience Dana’s 1835 port call to Santa Barbara during an overnight stay aboard the tall ship Spirit of Dana Point. Program content is in compliance with the California State Board of Education History-Social Science Content Standards and highlights California’s rich maritime history.

  • TYPE
  • FEE
  • QTY
    • Public Sail Adult

    • $50.00
    • Public Sail Child

    • $20.00
Please select a quantity
View Purchase Conditions

Monday, October 2, 2017

BEST OF SHOW at Wags n' Whiskers, October 7th

Image may contain: sunglasses

We invite you to Best in Show at Wags n' Whiskers, Oct. 7, at Santa Barbara City College.The show takes place at 1pm on stage with 3 fun categories: a Haute Dog Fashion Contest, X-Factor Top Talent Challenge and Rescues on the Runway (adoptable pets). Register at or at the event, 11am-12:30pm. Have your photo taken on the Best in Show Red Carpet and in our Pawparazzi Photo Booth (your pet's portrait may be selected for the 2018 Best in Show Calendar!) Great contest prizes from Lemos Feed & Supply, Who's Walking Who, Montecito Pet Shop and C.A.R.E.4Paws. Our fabulous emcee is radio/TV-host Arthur von Wiesenberger. — at Santa Barbara City College.

This year at Wags n' Whiskers, we're excited to introduce our first Best in Show contest. It's free to enter and starts at 1pm on the festival day. Our three categories are:
Rescues on the Runway
We invite local rescues and shelter to come up on stage to show off their adoptable dogs so that our festival-goers can learn about them. Calm and social cats and bunnies are of course welcome on stage, too. 
The Haute Dog Fashion Contest 
Strut your mutt in his/her finest costume during this fun show.
Show off your pet's best trick or special talent. Anything goes!

Top contestants get great prizes from Lemos Feed & Pet Supply, Montecito Pet Shop, Who's Walking Who and C.A.R.E.4Paws!
Registration details
Register online by filling out our registration form and emailing it to or faxing it to 805.456.2095. While we strongly suggest pre-registration, you can also register on festival day, between 11am to 12:30pm at the Best in Show booth by the stage.
The Pawparazzi Photo Booth, Red Carpet & 2018 Best in Show Calendar
Kristen Hehnke of Veils & Tails Photography will take photos of you and your pet on the Pawparazzi Red Carpet before you go on stage and pet portrait professional Wendy Domanski heads up our Pawparazzi Photo Booth. Be sure to enter your pet's photo into the running for a spot in our 2018 Best in Show at Wags n' Whiskers Calendar. 
information and photos are all from the C.A.R.E.4Paws Website