It’s the shortest day of the year, when the sun sets early and the night sky is long and dark. December solstice is a special time, a pause in the middle of winter, to welcome the return of the light and celebrate the longest night of the year. It’s the perfect time to embrace winter’s magic and to find ways to celebrate the special day. This guide will provide ideas on how to make the most of the December solstice, from light-filled activities to cozy rituals to mark the occasion. From decorating with twinkle lights to savoring seasonal recipes, make this solstice a day to remember for years to come. Let the festivities begin!
The December solstice marks the longest day of the year, when the North Pole has its maximum tilt towards the sun. It’s generally celebrated on December 21 or 22, depending on the year, when the Earth’s axis is tilted at its maximum angle towards the sun. The December solstice happens annually, when the Northern Hemisphere is tilted towards the sun, allowing it to have its longest hours of daylight. This day is special because it’s the only point in the year where night and day are equal, the sun having reached its southernmost point in the sky. Read on to learn more about celebrating the December solstice. The December solstice is also known as Sólmasa in the Old Norse calendar, Dies Solis in the Latin calendar, and Yule in the Nordic calendar. It’s a time to celebrate the return of the light and prepare for the coming spring.
There are many ways to celebrate the December solstice, from indoor activities to outdoor activities. Let this day be a chance to savor the season and the magic of the longest night of the year. Let’s start with indoor activities first. - Indoor activities: Throwing a Solstice party is a great way to celebrate the December solstice with family and friends. You can rejoice in the return of the light with a holiday-themed party with festive foods, decorations, and music to mark the occasion. - Outdoor activities: Go for a walk in nature to celebrate the longest day of the year. Get outside and feel the energy of the season, connecting to nature and the cycles of life. Enjoy winter activities to mark the special day, from ice skating to sledding and snowshoeing.
Part of celebrating the December solstice is celebrating the season, and what better way to do that than with seasonal foods? Enjoy a range of winter produce, from oranges to apples and pears to winter squashes to Brussels sprouts. Pumpkin pie and Christmas cookies are also traditional foods to mark the December solstice. Let this be a day to indulge in treats and festive foods to mark the occasion.
- Apples: Apples are associated with the sun, which makes them a festive treat for the longest day of the year. Enjoy apples dipped in caramel or apple pie to mark the special day!
- Pears: Pears are associated with abundance, making them a fitting treat for the December solstice. Pears are also sweet, juicy, and full of fiber, making them a healthy option for the longest day of the year. Try baking pears in a crumble or dousing them in cinnamon and brown sugar for a festive dessert.
- Winter squash: Winter squashes are a hearty seasonal vegetable, full of Vitamin A, Vitamin C, and potassium. Squash is also versatile, making it a fitting dish for the December solstice. Enjoy roasted squash as a side dish, in a soup, or even in a dessert.
- Brussels sprouts: Brussels sprouts are a hearty winter vegetable, full of Vitamin C and iron. They are traditionally eaten at Christmas and make a great side dish to mark the longest day of the year. You can roast or sauté Brussels sprouts for a festive fall dish.
- Pumpkin pie: Pumpkin pie is a festive fall dessert that is the perfect dessert to mark the December solstice. It’s traditionally made with lots of spices, making it an ideal dish to mark the longest day of the year. Enjoy traditional pumpkin pie with whipped cream or try a vegan version.
With all the fun activities that come with the December solstice, it’s easy to forget to mark the occasion with special traditions and rituals. This day is the perfect time to get creative with special activities that mark the longest day of the year. Here are a few ideas for rituals and traditions to mark the December solstice.
- Watch the sunrise: The December solstice marks the longest day of the year, so the best place to watch the sunrise is near the equator. If you live in a place near the equator, try watching the sunrise with family and friends to mark the occasion. If you don’t live near the equator, you can still enjoy watching the sunrise with friends and family. Wake up before sunrise to watch the sun rise and celebrate the longest day of the year!
- Write a letter to the sun: Writing a letter to the sun is a great ritual to mark the longest day of the year. Let this be a chance to express gratitude for the light and to thank the sun for the warmth it brings. Mark the occasion with a ritual to remind yourself to be grateful and to celebrate the light during the darkest season.
- Decorate your home with lights: While it’s dark outside, decorate your home with lights to mark the longest day of the year. Let this be a chance to bring light inside and decorate for the holidays. There are endless ways to decorate your home with lights to mark the occasion, from string lights to candles and more.
Part of celebrating the December solstice is celebrating the season, and what better way to do that than with decorations, lights, and festive décor? Here are a few ideas on how to decorate your home to celebrate the longest day of the year.
- Make a winter wreath: Make a winter wreath using pinecones, berries, and other festive winter items. Try decorating it with lights to mark the longest day of the year.
- Deck the halls: Deck the halls with lights, decorations, and festive items to mark the longest day of the year. You can decorate your home inside and outside to mark the special day.
- Light candles: Light candles to mark the longest day of the year. Use candles to decorate your home and to create a cozy atmosphere during the longest night of the year.
Part of the December solstice celebrations is enjoying the long nights and connecting to the magic of the season. Take the time to slow down and enjoy the longest night of the year, and make it memorable with these December solstice crafts. You can make these crafts to decorate your home for the longest day of the year or to give as gifts to friends and loved ones.
- Make a solar-powered snowflake: Make a solar-powered snowflake to mark the longest day of the year. This is a great craft to do with kids and a great way to celebrate the season.
- Create a Solstice jar: Create a Solstice jar to mark the longest day of the year. Fill the jar with items that remind you of the season, such as pine cones, berries, and pictures.
Celebrate the December solstice with these fun ideas and thoughtful traditions. Decorate your home with lights, decorations, and festive items to mark the longest day of the year. Enjoy seasonal foods and make special treats, like pumpkin pie and Christmas cookies, that are perfect for the longest day of the year. Connect to the magic of the season with special crafts and activities, like making a solar-powered snowflake or creating a Solstice jar, to mark the longest day of the year.