10-Minute Workouts While Baby Naps

My doctor recommended three workouts, that you can easily fit in while baby’s snoozin’ in the afternoon or kicking away in her bouncy seat. Each mini routine is a series of three simple moves that shape up your entire body, especially the core and back muscles you need to strengthen for toting your new bundle of love around!

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Bennefits of homeschool

homeschoolAt the end of our rope with not only our finances but with the education our kids seemed to not be getting, we looked into homeschool and working from home. That’s when we found the John Commuta system and purchased it.  The worksheets talked us through the system and helped us  not only lower our monthly bills but eliminate them all together. The system also helped us analyze our finaces in a different way.  
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New Year’s Eve Facts and Traditions

New year traditions and facts

Are you getting ready to write some New Year’s resolutions and have fun ringing in the New Year? Before you do, I wanted to share some fun and interesting facts about New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day celebrations. You might be surprised at what you find out.

New Year’s Eve Traditions and History

Resolutions – Ringing in the New Year is not a modern day concept, and was even documented in Babylonian times as a period of great celebration. Along with the feasts and celebrations in Babylon came the custom of making New Year’s resolutions, the most popular of which during that time was returning borrowed farm equipment.

new years facts traditionsSince then, the date of the New Year has changed quite a bit, until it became established that January 1 would be the beginning of the New Year. The name January is derived from Janus, the name of the Roman god of beginnings. He is portrayed with two faces, one looks toward the future and the other looks back on the past.

Baby New Year – This tradition was begun in ancient Greece to celebrate the rebirth of their god of fertility. They would parade a baby around in a basket during their New Year’s celebrations.

New Year’s Song – Everyone has heard “Auld Lang Syne” played or sung at New Year’s celebrations, but how did it become the official New Year’s Eve song? Auld Lang Syne is a Scottish phrase that is translated as “old long since,” meaning “times gone by” and the words are reminiscent of remembering good times and good friends. It was a popular Scottish song and was even published in a book by the poet Robert Burns. Guy Lombardo of Guy Lombardo and His Royal Canadiansheard the song being sung by Scottish immigrants and played it at the New York City New Year’s Eve party in 1929, making it famously popular as the New Year’s Eve song ever since then.

Auld Lang Syne
Should auld acquaintance be forgot and never brought to mind?
Should auld acquaintance be forgot and days of auld lang syne?
For auld Lang syne, my dear, for auld Lang syne,
We’ll take a cup of kindness yet, for auld Lang syne.
Should auld acquaintance be forgot and never brought to mind?
Should auld acquaintance be forgot and days of auld Lang syne?
And here’s a hand, my trusty friend and gie’s a hand o’ thine
We’ll tak’ a cup o’ kindness yet for auld Lang syne.

new years eve day traditions factsGood luck foods– If you want good luck in the coming year, then you should eat black-eyed peas (a tradition for good luck here in the south), ham (a symbol of prosperity), and cabbage (for prosperity and wealth) on New Year’s Day. But eating lobsters or chicken on New Year’s Day will bring a year of bad luck.

New Year’s Eve and Day Facts

312 Million– approximate population of people in the U.S. to ring in the New Year of 2012.

7% of those people will choose not to celebrate New Year’s Eve / Day.

62% will stay home to celebrate the New Year.

750 Million photos were uploaded to Facebook during the New Year’s Eve weekend in 2010.

Car Theft– More vehicles are stolen on New Year’s Day than on any other day, so keep your car locked and safe.

1907– year of the first New Year’s Eve ball drop in Times Square. It was 700 pounds and consisted of iron, wood and 100 lights.

new years facts traditions11,875 pounds– weight of the Waterford crystal New Year’s Eve ball that is dropped in New York City’s Times Square.

More than 30,000 lights adorning this huge crystal ball.

“Let there be love”– the crystal ball theme for ringing in the year 2012.

Born on January 1 – Paul Revere, J. Edgar Hoover, Lorenzo de Medici, Betsy Ross and Pope Alexander VI

25% of people will abandon their New Year’s resolutions after only two weeks!

50% will give up their resolutions halfway through the year.

Wearing red underwear on New Year’s day is supposed to bring you good luck.

{sources: FactMonster.com, 2020 Site, Woodridge Patch, U.S. Census Bureau, Hallmark, History.com, Wikipedia.org}

Fun Christmas Facts and Stats

Now that I wrote all about the history of Christmas and origin of Christmas symbols, it’s time to find out the fun facts and stats about our modern Christmas holiday. I have found some pretty crazy and interesting information, so I know you will enjoy it.

Christmas Facts

Christmas Fun Facts

The city called North Pole is in Alaska. There are 2 cities named Santa Claus, and one named Noel.

Apollo 8 – Did you know that the crew of Apollo 8 orbited the moon on Christmas Eve of 1968? (During the orbit, the crew read the creation story from the book of Genesis, which was broadcast for all to hear and later became controversially famous.)

December 16– Busiest mailing day for packages, making the 19th the busiest delivery day for packages.

December 20– Busiest letter mailing day, so you might be better off mailing those Christmas cards early.

Christmas Facts and StartisticsWhite Elephant– The term “white elephant gift” came from the King of Siam. He would give a white elephant as a gift to any courtier that annoyed him and, because of the upkeep expenses, the gift would ruin them.

Mistletoe is derived from the Anglo-Saxon words “missel” and “tan” and is translated “dung twig.”

Gemini 6– On December 16, 1965, the astronauts of Gemini 6 sang “jingle Bells” for all the world to hear, possibly making it the first song sung in space.

World’s Largest Christmas Gift– Statue of Liberty, given to the U.S. from the French in 1886.

Crazy Christmas Statistics

5340 number of times a visa card is used every minute during the holiday season.

3– number of times the average Christmas shopper will be elbowed this Christmas shopping season.

$1.25 Billion was spent on Cyber Monday for the 2011 holiday season, which gives a 15% increase from last year.

Gift Cards are the top gift this year, just ahead of electronics.

fun Christmas Facts and stats801 Million pieces of mail will be processed on the 20th of December.

1.5 Billion cards sent for Christmas in the U.S. It is the largest card sending holiday.

2 Billion– approximate number of candy canes that will be sold this Christmas season.

30 Million– approximate number of real Christmas trees to be purchased this year for Christmas.

113%– Jewlery store sales increase for the 2010 Christmas season.

Christmas Facts$27.2 Billion– spent in department stores alone for Christmas in 2010.

10% of Christmas gifts will be broken before New Year’s Day.


{sources: U.S. Postal Service, U.S. Census Bureau, PR Newswire, Wikipedia}

Christmas Facts and Stats

Christmas Past – History of Christmas

History of Christmas TraditionsHave you wondered what is fact and fiction concerning the history and origins of Christmas symbols and traditions? What is the history of Christmas celebrations around the world? I have found the answers from reliable sources and plan to tell you all about the historical origins of Christmas symbols and traditions around the world and how they all came together to form this worldwide holiday.

History of Christmas

history of Christmas symbols
Mithra - Roman god

Before Christmas celebrations became popular, people all around the would had certain traditions celebrating winter solstice. In Rome, the unconquerable sun god Mithra’s birthday was celebrated on December 25. In Germany, the god Oden was honored and feared during the winter solstice. The Norse celebrated winter solstice because it meant longer days ahead.

4th century A.D.- Pope Julius I decided to officially make December 25 the day to celebrate the birth of Christ calling it the Feast of the Nativity, although nobody knew what day of the year Jesus was born. This was an attempt to rid the pagan holiday in Rome and have more people celebrating the birth of Christ by placing it during a time when people are already celebrating.

8th century A.D.- the Feast of the Nativity had gained popularity across most of the world, replacing the hedonistic celebrations only in name. Most puritans that came to America outlawed the holiday because it was celebrated more like Mardis Gras than the way we now celebrate.

19th century A.D.– It was not common for Americans to celebrate Christmas until the 19th century and that was due to a fictional book by Washington Irving. In his book, The Sketchpad of Geoffrey Crayon, gent. the traditions of Christmas that we now follow today were created, making people believe this was the way Christmas was supposed to be celebrated. Also during this time, Charles Dickens wrote his famous novel, A Christmas Carol, which changed the way people thought of Christmas.

Origin of Christmas Symbols

Yule Log – During the winter solstice the Norse would light a huge log, called the yule log, that could stay lit up to 12 days. The word yule means wheel, and the Norse believed the sun was a giant wheel.

Christmas Tree – Although evergreens were considered sacred throughout Europe, Germany began the tradition of decorating evergreen trees during the winter solstice. Martin Luther was the first person to decorate Christmas trees with lighted candles.

Poinsettias – Joel Poinsett, an American missionary to Mexico, brought back this red and green plant in 1828. people began calling it a poinsettia after him and it soon became popular as the official plant of Christmas.

Mistletoe – Celts thought mistletoe was magical and could ward off evil when hung in their doorways. English society embraced the custom of hanging mistletoe during winter solstice and it soon became a Christmas tradition.

Caroling was popularized in England by the common traveling musicians who would receive food or money in return for singing carols.

Noel – In France, Christmas was called Noel from the french phrase les bonnes nouvelles, meaning “the good news” of the gospel.

Christmas historySanta Claus / St. Nicholas – St. Nicholas was a kind, pious monk who was rumored to have given away all of his wealth to help the sick and poor. The most popular legend describes an account where he filled the stockings of three young girls with money, because they did not have a dowry for marriage. The dutch for St. Nicholas was Sinter Klaas, which eventually led to the name Santa Claus. The image that we now recognize as Santa Claus came from the tale by an Episcopal minister entitled “Twas the Night Before Christmas” which he wrote in 1822 to entertain his children.

Kris Kringle did not refer to Santa Claus, but is actually derived from Christkind, the German and Swiss word for “Christ Child” an angelic being who accompanied St. Nicholas and helped deliver gifts.

Rudolph the red-nosed reindeer was born out of the desire to commercialize Christmas. A copywriter at a department store wrote the story of Rudolph to inspire others to triumph over adversity and to bring in more sales during the Christmas season.

Candy Cane – The shepherd’s crook shaped peppermint candy that is popular during Christmas was first invented in the 17th century to hand out to children during the nativity scene service at Cologne Cathedral in Germany.

Angels, Nativity, and Wise Men – All of these figures, of course, were taken from the account of Jesus’ birth in Luke 2 (KJV) and established as symbols of the Christmas season with the Pope’s declaration of Christmas.

{sources: History.com, Wikipedia, and TheHistoryofChristmas.com}