Holidays

Everyone loves a good holiday, no matter whether you're commemorating a special occasion or just looking for a day out of the office. Read about important holidays in these articles.

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Time for family visits, chestnuts roasting on an open fire and that other holiday tradition -- receiving a glut of boring, boastful newsletters from distant friends, co-workers and long-lost family. So, make yours stand out from the pack.

By Emilie Sennebogen

On the first Thanksgiving, the pilgrims wore buckles, the Native Americans brought corn and everyone made merry until the sun went down. Right? That's not the most accurate portrayal of the historical event.

By Candace Keener

Why do children don ridiculous costumes and bang down doors demanding candy once a year? And what do the ancient Celtic clans of Britain have to do with it?

By Cristen Conger

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What do a man named Stingy Jack, the devil and a cross have to do with carving Halloween pumpkins? Everything, it turns out. This long-standing tradition is steeped in folklore and superstition.

By Emilie Sennebogen

April 1 gives the sneakiest ones among us an excuse for some shenanigans. Out of ideas for this year's springtime skulduggery? HowStuffWorks has 10 gags to completely confuse someone's day.

By Cristen Conger

Whether you're carving, stenciling or painting your pumpkin, we've collected five easy ways to create out-of-this-world pumpkin designs.

By Maria Trimarchi

Halloween is for tricks and treats... and partying! We have 10 cool party ideas for kids, teens and parents alike.

By Maria Trimarchi

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These five ideas offer a sampling of the gore, humor and downright creativity that it takes to make a teen-perfect Halloween costume.

By Cristen Conger

To get to the bottom of why black cats got a bad rap and where revelers can catch glimpse of a ghost, treat yourself to these 10 frighteningly fun Halloween facts.

By Cristen Conger

We have five tricks to making Halloween noise that has you covered whether you're a digital music downloader or a do-it-yourselfer.

By Maria Trimarchi

Prevent your family from hidden dangers and injuries such as falls and burns with these helpful hints.

By Maria Trimarchi

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You don't need to be a pumpkin-carving Picasso to think outside the typical jack-o'-lantern box, you just need a little spark to get you going.

By Maria Trimarchi

Money for admission? Check. Willing companion to hold onto during your visit? Check. Second set of pants in case yours are scared off? Check. You're now ready to enter a haunted house.

By Cristen Conger

Holly adorns houses all over the world during the holiday season, but why do we decorate with it? Find out why its crimson berries are so closely associated with the holidays.

By Elizabeth Abbess

There's no doubt that commercialism runs rampant during Christmas. So is the word "Xmas" just another casualty of the modern advertising age? Or does the X in Xmas have its roots in Christianity after all?

By Sam Abramson

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Have you ever caught yourself singing the "Twelve Days of Christmas" and wondered what geese, doves and milk maids have to do with the holiday?

By Sam Abramson

A pack of razors, chocolate-covered truffles and a harmonica -- these are just a few of the random items you might find in a Christmas stocking. Sure, these festive stockings are ideal for stuffing with pint-size presents, but why do we do it?

By John Fuller

Also known as the "lobster flower," 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

The yule log has long been an important symbol of winter. It was an important part of the Winter Solstice for Vikings, and in more modern times, a staple of holiday gatherings. Learn more about the yule log.

By Sam Abramson

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You might wondering how a fat jolly fellow like Santa can squeeze down a small hole like a chimney. Science to the rescue!

By John Fuller

File: Claus, Santa. Residence: the North Pole. Known aliases: Sinterklaas, St. Nick, Father Time and Sandy Claws. No matter what you call him, Santa Claus is one formidable being. Learn what makes the man in red tick.

By John Fuller

Christmas caroling is an age-old tradition. But how did it start? And why won't some carolers go until they get their figgy pudding? Learn about this peculiar but endearing holiday practice.

By Sam Abramson

For some, an ideal Christmas is a fire in the hearth and a blanket of snow covering the ground. Irving Berlin wrote about it, and Bing Crosby crooned about it. Learn why you might be dreaming of a white Christmas.

By John Fuller

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Christmas is celebrated by hundreds of millions of people around the world each year. But what do presents, three wise men and Jesus have to do with each other anyway?

By Sarah Dowdey

Underappreciated and overworked elves put in a pretty astounding amount of labor during the holidays. Then there are the other duties they must fulfill, like tending to diva reindeer like Rudolph. So do elves thrive on stress, and do they ever get disgruntled?

By John Fuller