Thursday, January 6, 2011

The Gift of the Magi, Sto Lat?

I don't know why it is that we feel that the party is over when the Three Kings go home? Today, on the 6th of January we as children would still be having a "little Christmas". I don't remember the menu, but it was a celebration none the less.  We would have gone to mass and had "chalk" blessed, yes chalk, and then my mother would come home and make some kinda symbols over the entry ways.  I have all those blessed pieces of chalk, but I don't know the symbols, and I'm not sure the church celebrates today this same way.  The feast of the Three Kings, was called the Epiphany, if I remember.  My sister Alice always felt cheated, because you see, it's her birthday.  She wasn't born in a manger, but pretty close.  She was born at home, in my parents very small rental rooms.  They had no telephone, so my dad's friend ran all the way, in his pyjamas, to the hospital to get help.  By the time help arrived she was wailing.  So you see the celebration was not just for her, so when I had  begun  un -Christmasing on Tuesday the tree didn't come down .  You see when I un-Christmas, like many of the bloggers I read, I feel I need to reduce.  Not happening smoothly.  So far all that got done was a inventory of how many Christmas serving dishes I own.  They all got put away in "ONE" cupboard, instead of all over the place.  Last year 2009 I participated in the Christmas Theme  Reading Challenge, this is the book I read.  Magi, was an interesting look at the Trio. I'm now looking to buy The Gift of the Magi, by O. Henry. just for my book shelf.   So I'm off to think of something wonderful to buy Alice for her big birthday.  Happy Birthday Alice. 

I have to add a little something here, it bothered me so I looked up the marks we are suppose to make on the doorframes. After some prayers from the head of the household this is what is suppose to follow.
[Using chalk (hence, "Chalking the Door"), people are invited to

inscribe the lintel of the

home (the horizontal frame above the door) with the inscription

shown below. The letters

C M B come from the traditional (9th century) names for the "three

kings" -- Caspar,

Melchior & Balthazar. Some also suggest "Christus Mansionem

Benedicat" which means

"May Christ bless this dwelling!"]

[Each person is afforded a turn to make one or more of the marks:]

19 + C + M + B + 98


fredamans said...

Happy birthday to your sister Alice!

Anonymous said...

Well Irene, you did it again! I cried and then I started to dance. Thank you for the lovely, lovely greeting. I am thankful that I can still celebrate birthdays, but I want time to stand still now. Any advice from your fellow bloggers. Thanks again. Your loving sister, Alice.

Rosadimaggio63 said...

Hi Irene,
grazie del consiglio... ho modificato le impostazioni in bacheca....
Spero che presto tutto venga ripristinato per avere sempre i miei ultimi post aggiornati !
Buona serata e buon anno :)

Jeanne said...

These posts are always full of memories for me, growing up in a Polish home as well. Three Kings Day fell on my mother's birthday and we always put those marks on our door frame too. Wish I could remember what they looked like other than 'tally' marks to child me.

Nise' said...

Happy Birthday to Alice!

I remember having to go to church on Epiphany (I was raised Episcopalian). Not sure if they still hold services. That was soooo long ago!

bermudaonion said...

I've spent most of my life in the South, which is mostly Protestant and for us, everything Christmas had to be put away before the first of the year. Happy birthday to your sister!

Jenners said...

What a birth story your sister has!!! That is something.

And I don't think I've ever heard of the chalking of the door but it sounds neat.

National Pet Day...

This is our pet cat, he lived with us for 18 years, adopted from a shelter, best cat ever. RIP Keahan