Boxing Day started as a gift giving tradition that originated in 19th Century England during the reign of Queen Victoria. It is celebrated on December 26th the day after Christmas and is a national holiday in the UK and other parts of the world.
Boxing Days original purpose was for the gentry and business people to give gifts on the day after Christmas to their servants and others who provided service to their homes or business. There were also boxes placed in churches where people would put in items to be handed out to those in need on the day after Christmas. The use of boxes for the above two traditions is where the name Boxing Day is thought to have originated.
The tradition of Boxing Day is still carried on today and is used as an extension to the Christmas holiday. Family meals and gatherings are held. For example you might go to one set of in-laws house on Christmas Day and to the other set of in-laws home on Boxing Day, This can help alleviate the stress of trying to see everyone in one day so it might help you to incorporate this idea into your Christmas traditions.
Sports events such as soccer and horse racing are a large part of the Boxing Day celebrations. Many Fox Hunts also take place but they are not allowed to hunt a real fox any longer because of the inhumane aspects of the sport. This is a good sign of how we are becoming more sensitive to the acts of cruelty that are placed on animals in the name of sport. We should all decry any such activity that we feel is inhumane in order to help protect innocent animals.
Stores start after Christmas sales on Boxing Day . Making it one of the biggest shopping days in the UK. Just like our English counterparts we have after Christmas shopping sales here in the US. While out on this shopping spree why not pick up some canned food and sale clothing to donate to a local charity. This action would help to keep up one of the old traditions of Boxing Day because you would be helping those in need.
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