Every Friday, we celebrate the weekend — and all the reading and relaxing and daydreaming time ahead — with Melissa's favorite book- and travel-related links of the week. Why work when you can read fun stuff?!
This post is part of our Endnotes series.
From our house in Prague to your homes all over the place, we wish you a very happy, holly jolly, oh-so-merry holiday. Rest assured that we’re cozied up with good books, an enormous box of chocolates, bottomless cups of tea, and only the comfiest clothes. Tonight is Jólabókaflóðið, and we’re taking our relaxation very seriously.
The Morgan Library in New York City has the original manuscript of Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol online, so you can see the master’s handwriting and cross-outs in all their 19th-century glory.
Related: Town & Country explains how A Christmas Carol became a classic. ‘England had been in something of a Christmas hangover before Dickens’ shimmering little chronicle changed everything. Oliver Cromwell and the Roundheads, Scrooges all, had banned any celebration of the holiday in the 1600s; the subsequent advent of the Industrial Revolution kept factories humming with nary a thought for yuletide… it wasn’t until A Christmas Carol, published in a slim leather-brown volume with gilt pages and color illustrations in 1843, that the jollification of the season took root.’
In addition to chocolate, we’ll be enjoying a retro cheeseball, a tangy combo of cream cheese, blue cheese, and cheddar cheese rolled in dried cranberries, toasted pecans, and minced parsley. This one also sounds delicious.
Is it wrong that I’m oddly tempted to make this, just for the spectacle?! (Get more shockingly horrific but oddly compelling retro Christmas recipes right here.)
Sorta related: Here are photos of the Apollo VIII Christmas menu/food from the first mission to orbit the moon, 21-27 December 1968.
Did you know that the 12 Days of Christmas originated as a game? Or that twelve ‘calling birds’ were actually 12 ‘colly birds,’ a.k.a., Old English slang for blackbirds? Here’s the true meaning behind the lyrics of the classic Christmas carol.
What’s in a name: Father Christmas vs. Santa Claus.
Yes, a white Christmas is lovely, but this looks really nice, too.
‘Tis time to learn how ‘tis the season became a common holiday phrase.
This painting by Eyvind Earle is very soothing:
Snowscape by Eyvind Earle (American, 1916-2000) pic.twitter.com/fcwetPSbfQ— Flashbak.com (@aflashbak) December 18, 2021
Ah, the wintertide is quite hiburnal, and I’m hoping for a turn that will produce a few hours of apricity — else, I’ll be compelled to latibulize until spring. (You, too, can wax archaic with these 14 words for winter.)
This is exactly what my hair looks like right now — and here are more festive styles:
Top image courtesy of AnastasiaNess/Shutterstock.
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