Tis the season… to learn all about Christmas traditions, build your gift list and pick up free printable sheet music for your favorite Christmas songs!

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The poinsettia's flame-red leaves are a staple in holiday decorations. But how did a plant indigenous to tropical climates end up on mantels in North America?

By Sam Abramson

Discover the beauty of poinsettias this Christmas season. Elevate your festive décor with vibrant colors and timeless elegance. The perfect holiday touch!

By Sam Abramson

Every December 23rd in the city of Oaxaca, Mexico, radishes come to life, as carvers compete for cash and bragging rights in this veggie-style Christmas tradition.

By Jennifer Walker-Journey


The 1800s saw the birth of many of the Christmas customs, from Santa Claus to lights, that we know and love today.

By Kate Morgan

The resolutely bipartisan White House Christmas ornament has been an annual tradition since 1981 and is a big fundraiser too.

By Alia Hoyt

Perhaps no country on Earth loves Christmas more than the Philippines. Residents there celebrate the holiday for four months solid. Here's why.

By Laurie L. Dove

In 1957, a woman named Frances Kipps Spencer invented "Chrismons" to decorate her church's sanctuary and to remind parishioners of the true meaning behind the Christian celebration of Christmas.

By Carrie Tatro


Step aside, St. Nick. Butt out, Rudolph. In this special Yuletide quiz, we're saluting another beloved member of the Christmas character pantheon: the one and only Missus Claus.

By Mark Mancini

Interfaith families exist all over the world and this is the time of year when discussions focus on how to celebrate the holidays.

By Samira Mehta

The earliest biblical descriptions don't mention the presence of animals at the manger when Jesus was born. So how did those Nativity scenes evolve into what we know today?

By Vanessa Corcoran

The typical manger scene features Mary, Joseph, baby Jesus and an assortment of animals. But in Catalonia, Spain, there is one more character: a figure with his pants down, taking a poop. But why?

By Nathan Chandler


White elephant. Mean Santa. Yankee swap. These are the holiday parties we live for. But if it feels like yours is getting a bit tired, we've got 10 rules to liven it up this year.

By Michelle Konstantinovsky

These Advent calendars give new meaning to the phrase "countdown to Christmas." Plus, where did the Advent calendar come from? And what are some of the more unusual takes on it?

By Alia Hoyt

The Rockefeller Center Christmas tree in New York City may be an iconic symbol of the holidays, but how well do you know this tree-dition?

By Laurie L. Dove

On Christmas Eve, Icelandic families traditionally settle down to a cozy night of exchanging gifts of books and reading. It's all part of jólabókaflóð or the Christmas Book Flood.

By Dave Roos


We tallied up how much dough it costs the big guy to give every kid in the world toys. And it's way more than we expected.

By Michelle Konstantinovsky

Our theory on St. Nick's sweet ride: It's rustic on the outside and state-of-the-art on the inside. Learn more about the advanced technology we think runs Santa's sleigh (and those reindeer).

By John Fuller & Cherise Threewitt

Yes, you read that right. There are several options for renting Christmas trees. They're more eco-friendly and way more convenient.

By Michelle Konstantinovsky

Parson Brown? Yuletide? Do you have a clue what the lyrics of Christmas carols are talking about?

By Christopher Hassiotis


Each country has its own unique way of celebrating the Christmas season. Learn about Christmas traditions around the world, from England to Ethiopia.

By Sarah Toast

Get your ugly holiday sweater fill in one go with these nine horrid knits.

By Yves Jeffcoat

Experts and parents are divided on whether to encourage children's belief in Santa Claus.

By Alia Hoyt

Forget caroling, feasting and having any sort of fun at all on "Foolstide," the catchy but hateful nickname some Puritans gave Christmas in the New World.

By John Donovan


You thought your drunk uncle was the worst part about Christmas? These tragedies, large and small, should put things in perspective.

By Clint Pumphrey

Can't say "Xmas"? Sure, you can! Despite (or perhaps, because of) Christmas' popularity among Christians and non-Christians alike, there are lots of myths connected with this holiday.

By Melanie Radzicki McManus