Brrrrr! It is cold outside. This must mean that December is coming . . . and isn’t that the most wonderful time of the year? Here is a sneak preview of the December Old Farmer’s Almanac Monthly, which includes info on the month’s full Moon, a guide to having the happiest New Year, ideas for walnut wreaths, facts about the black crow, recipes for winter goodies, and an Astrologer’s Guide to the Perfect Mate!
Five Fascinating Facts from the December Old Farmer’s Almanac Monthly
1. December’s full Moon has at least two traditional names: the Full Cold Moon, in recognition of the winter chill that sets in as temperatures begin to drop, and the Long Night’s Moon because it occurs around the winter solstice, the longest night of the year.
2. Many of the end-of-year practices that we take for granted actually date from ancient times. As early as 2600 B.C., the Babylonians celebrated the new year with 11-day-long feasts that originated the practice of new year noisemaking.
3. Legend has it that a group of crows is called a “murder”—but this is not actually true. Kevin McGowan says that the phrase “murder of crows” was likely coined by a poet. Scientists call such a group a “flock.”
4. December 13 is St. Lucia Day. St. Lucia, also called Lucy, was a 4th-century Italian martyr. Her name is derived from the Latin lux, meaning “light,” and thus she is associated with festivals of light related to the solstice. Traditionally on this day, the oldest, or sometimes the youngest, daughter dons a crown of burning candles (Lucy wore a crown of candles to light her way) and wakes the family with coffee and St. Lucia buns, which are sweet rolls seasoned with saffron.
5. Ancient Romans called walnuts “Jupiter’s royal acorn,” hence its Latin name, Juglans regia. The “English” walnut tree that produces the most common and abundant walnuts that we eat today is believed to have originated in ancient Persia, so it is sometimes called the Persian walnut.
You can also purchase the December Almanac Monthly through the iTunes store!