I have wanted to do some celebrating on the Winter Solstice for a few years now. The Swedish word for Christmas is Jul which would be Yule in English.
Traditionally it has had nothing to do with Jesus and the church but it has been a celebration of the Solstice. The promise that light will return to us.
This is how sunrise/sunset happens in December. The decrease in the day is slowly grinding to a halt and around December 22nd the day is only 2 seconds shorter than the day before.
The solstice occur at 6:30 am and the next day is 6 seconds longer than Solstice Day.
Already in mid-January the days grow longer by 3 minutes a day.
I have looked around for a guide to how to celebrate it but found nothing that spoke to me. In Iran they celebrate Yalda on the Winter Solstice but their traditions all adhere to the local religion which I feel little connection to. So instead I have decided to make our own traditions.
I thought I'd make a saffron cake or a saffron wreath. The round yellow cake would be a reminder of the sun.
I know we'll need some lighting of candles and I have an idea to decorate a candle with suns and we'll light it every night until the Equinox in March or maybe even until the Summer Solstice in June.
I would give the girls something but I fear another gift exchange would be too much.