Is there any amongst us who does not like candles? The beauty of the flickering light, the ambiance. Candles add warmth and personality to your home, encouraging one to spend more time there. Candles work on many different sensory levels to calm and refresh. They do not even have to be lit to impart an atmosphere to the room.
December has long been a celebration of light, and for many of us, candle lighting at this time of year is an important tradition be if for Christmas or Yule. Lighting a simple candle can be a good way of starting your Winter Solstice celebration. Hanukkah, the 8 day Festival of Lights, which commemorates the Maccabees military victory over the Greek Syrians and the re-dedication of the Holy Temple in Jerusalem also falls at this time. A sacred light was lighted of oil which had been found in the temple. It was thought that this light would last only for one day, but miraculously, it lasted for eight. Henceforth, each year Jewish people decree that each evening, one additional candle is lit on the Hanukkah menorah. By the last evening, eight lighted candles stand together.
Traditional Yuletide candles form a kaleidoscope of colors and shapes -- red, white, green and gold; scents include pine, spruce, balsam, ginger, cinnamon, and, of course, bayberry, which has an interesting history indeed. According to legend, bayberry candles were the first scented candles made in colonial America. In early American, bayberry trees grew in abundance throughout the east. Colonial women discovered that boiling the berries of the bayberry bush resulted in a sweet smelling wax with a clean burn. Legend has it that the group of women who discovered bayberry wax started the colonial tradition of giving bayberry candles as Christmas gifts.
This bayberry candle comes from a friend
so on Christmas eve burn it down to the end.
For a bayberry candle burned to the socket,
will bring joy to the heart and gold to the pocket.
As folklore goes, To bring good luck for a year, they say, you must burn a Bayberry Candle on Christmas Day. And if the flame burns bright, and the light shines clear, then heaven will bless you all the year. Just be sure no one blows it out because an extinguished candle forebodes bad fortune. Even if you're not superstitious, the bay scent adds a wonderfully subtle aroma to the room.