Hello fabuless fashionistas and welcome to December. The month for the holidays and all the merriment they bring. Everywhere you look there is tinsel, trees, lights, candy canes, all the things that make the season bright. And if you happen to look up perhaps you will see something else that will bring you good cheer…Mistletoe!
Kissing under the mistletoe is a longtime Christmas tradition, but have you ever wondered how this custom came about?
The history of mistletoe as a symbolic herb dates back thousands of years. The plant’s romantic overtones most likely started with the Celtic Druids of the 1st Century A.D.. Because mistletoe could blossom even during the harsh cold winter months the Druids saw mistletoe as a sacred symbol of life and vigor.
Another chapter in the folklore of this plant comes from Norse mythology. As this tale goes, when the god, Odin’s son, Baldur was prophesied to die, his mother, Frigg, the goddess of love went to all the animals and plants in the world to secure an oath that they would not harm him. But she neglected to consult with the lowly mistletoe. The scheming god, Loki then made an arrow from the plant and saw that it was used to kill the otherwise invulnerable Baldur. According to one version of the story the gods were able to resurrect Baldur from the dead. The goddess Frigg, was so elated she declared mistletoe a symbol of love and vowed to plant a kiss on all who passed beneath it.
The plant’s association with fertility and vitality continued through the Middle Ages. By the 18th Century it has become widely incorporated into Christmas celebrations. How mistletoe made the leap from sacred herb to holiday décor could be debated, but the kissing tradition seems to have first caught on among servants in England before spreading to the middle classes. As part of the custom men were allowed to steal a kiss from a woman standing under the mistletoe. Refusing a kiss was viewed as bad luck.
Yet another tradition had those merry makers plucking a single berry from the plant with each kiss and stopping once they were all gone.
So, since it “tis the season”, go ahead and take a look up. If you see some mistletoe hanging there you might want to make a stand, and wait for the one you want to share a Christmas kiss with!
P.S. If you have real mistletoe as part of your holiday décor, please keep it away from children and pets as it is toxic. Just a friendly reminder to help keep your holidays safe and happy!
Till next time be thrifty and stay fabuless.
Love from Teresa and Vicky