December's bingo set is now available in the shop. Click here to go to the listing.
There was no way to get around the fact that December is all about Christmas, whether you celebrate it or not. Everyone encounters Christmas traditions, decor, and music just by leaving their house in December. This set attempts to balance out many aspects of December, but of course there are several Christmasy references. And there are SO many Christmas events around the country that I didn't attempt to choose any specific festivals this time around, but many pictures can still apply.
31 Days - Pretty self-explanatory, but it's always a nice reminder which months have which quantity of days.
Advent - Many Christians and non-Christians celebrate the weeks leading up to Christmas even without trying. That's what Advent calendars are about, right? :) As a kid, my sisters and I attended Saturday events at church and then at the Sunday service the next candle on the wreath would be lit. Christmas was so magical back then!
Baking - There are sooooo many delicious cookie recipes out there.
Cabin - It's kind of Hallmarky, but I know many people do have cabins and some spend the holidays there. I think I would!
Cardinal - They're the bird darling of winter/Christmas, even though they can be enjoyed year round for some.
Christmas - For better or worse, the main focus of December.
Christmas Lights - Probably my favorite type of Christmas decoration. I love seeing the houses lit up around town.
Cold Moon - Not the most original full moon name, but at least it's easy to know the reason for it.
Decem - December used to be the 10th month of the year before the Gregorian calendar came into effect, which is how it got its name. "Decem" is the Latin word for ten.
Eggnog - I suppose this could also apply to October and November, since stores are stocking it soooo early. But for me it's a December treat. I hope the trend of having special holiday things available for more months of the year reverses someday. Everything becomes less special when you don't have to wait for it.
Gingerbread House - A fun activity for kids and at various parties. I just wish they actually tasted good in the end, but even with quality ingredients they get all old and stale if you want to display the house for a bit. This is another thing that has started taking over other holidays. (I sound like Scrooge, but I'm just stating facts. 😁)
Hanukkah - Technically, Hanukkah can begin in November, but it's usually in December. This year (2023) It begins on December 7.
Hibernation - I like to choose some aspects of nature in each month, and hibernation is something that usually begins in December. The interesting thing (or maybe not) is that very few animals in the US truly hibernate. Even with bears it's apparently debatable, but I featured a bear anyway.
Holiday Market - This got a mention in November, too, but sometimes things are in more than one month! I know for some people they are a big part of the season.
Holly - One of December's birth flowers.
Ice Skating - Even though this goes on during many months of the year, I think many prioritize it during the holidays.
Kwanzaa - This is a holiday I knew basically nothing about until I created this set, which is one of the reasons I enjoy my work! I get to learn all sorts of stuff. Kwanzaa begins December 26 and lasts 7 days.
Leafless Tree - A signature sign of winter.
Movie Theater - I threw this in there because I know lots of people go to the theater during the holidays when new movies are being released.
Music - So many of the activities and traditions of December involve music, and specifically Christmas music takes center stage. There are more live musicians in places like malls, restaurants, and airports to create a merry atmosphere.
Nativity Scene - Something many of us display this time of year. While creating a Nativity word find last year, I did some research and learned more about the circumstances when Jesus was born, and it's interesting how many aspects of the traditional nativity scene/birth story we accept when they are not very accurate. Definitely read up on this--it was very enlightening.
New Year’s Eve - NYE just slips in for December, but the day after will definitely get a spot on January's set.
Nutcracker Ballet - I used to attend the Nutcracker for a class field trip when I was a kid. I think I've seen it about 6 times now, but it's been quite awhile. I know it's a tradition for many.
Paperwhite - One of December's birth flowers. (It was tough to find art for this because for some reason many artists paint another type of narcissus instead. I like paperwhites and wanted the picture to be accurate. 💮)
Poinsettia - This is sometimes thought of as December's birth flower, but it's not. Still, I felt it deserved a mention since they're so popular as gifts and you see them all over stores in December.
Saint Lucy’s Day - This holiday is a new one to me, but it seemed like enough people celebrate that it deserved a mention. I can't seem to get over the part about Lucia wearing a wreath of candles on her head...how did she not burn her hair?
Saint Nicholas Day - Another saint day that I was unfamiliar with before, but I've heard bits and pieces over the years. It's like a warm up for Santa. ;)
Scarf - You know I like to include some sort of month-appropriate clothing, so scarf won this time. I'm saving some others for January and February.
Seasonal Produce - Some of the many fruits and veggies that are ripening in December.
Shopping - Shopping got a mention with Black Friday for November, but I felt like it deserved another for December.
Sports - Some of the more popular pro sports to watch in December.
Travel - Lots of people travel during the holidays, which is why I avoid it then. And because it's soooo expensive. I guess money should've been one of the pics!
Turquoise, Tanzanite, Zircon - December has three birthstones. Not sure why it couldn't stop at one. I think turquoise is the main one, though.
Winter Solstice - Obviously winter begins for the Northern Hemisphere in December.
Wrapping Presents - Whether you celebrate Christmas, Hanukkah, or Kwanzaa, yule 😁 probably be wrapping some gifts in December.
Yule Log - I'm not even sure I've seen a Yule log, but I know some people incorporate it into their celebrations and I wanted to cover as many bases as possible. Do you burn a Yule log or make a Yule cake?
Did I miss anything? Of course! There are so many things that occur each month, but I try to choose a variety of popular events and symbols that make this month special. It’s tough deciding what to feature. While creating them, I'm often limited by the available art (or my ability to create it) as well as the desire for some balance and consistency. I know that some important symbols and events get missed, and of course each person has a different experience, but I hope I have touched on at least a few meaningful aspects of the season for many Americans (and beyond).