Countdown to Christmas
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Date: 26 November, 2004

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'This Christmas be radical and buy nothing'

Suzanne Elvidge presents surefish’s very own Advent Calendar.

21 November 2004
Stir-Up Sunday — we’ve missed this, but it’s not too late to make your Christmas puddings

28 November 2004
First Sunday in Advent — have you made your Advent wreath?

1 December
First window on your Advent calendar — just time to rush to the Co-op and buy a Divine fair-trade chocolate one

2 December
Time to think about posting cards and parcels — the Royal Mail website has all the dates

3 December
Arrange a Christingle service and support the Children’s Society

4 December
Are you travelling over Christmas? Why not go by train and avoid the traffic — check timetables and ticket availability online

5 December
Second Sunday of Advent

6 December
Feast of Nicholas, Bishop of Myra, c.342

7 December
The beginning of Hanukkah

8 December
Starting to think about stocking fillers — what about a pound coin key ring? No more fiddling about at shopping trolley parks

9 December
Come to the end of the tether with tinsel? Why not get away

10 December
This Christmas be radical and buy nothing

11 December
But… if you are going to buy something, make it count

12 December
Third Sunday of Advent

13 December
Got a spare moment, a computer and a printer? Make a Christmas card for someone special

14 December
Last day to post parcels in the UK tomorrow. For those last minute gifts, look at Oxfam’s 2004 range — the website has a shop finder

15 December
Probably time to plan the Christmas dinner — how to cook the turkey

16 December
…how not to cook the turkey

17 December
…and what to feed those pesky non-meat eaters like me

18 December
Finding the nights long? As we move towards the longest night Dec 21 cope with all the darkness by reading about Seasonal Affective Disorder and but a daylight lamp to cheer yourself up

19 December
Fourth Sunday of Advent - when I was a kid, this is traditionally when we opened our box of Christmas biscuits

20 December
Tomorrow is the last day for posting first class Christmas cards in the UK. Not written them? Send a surefish/Christian Aid e-card

21 December
Feast of St Thomas, Apostle - today is his former feast day - it’s now celebrated on 3 July

22 December
Practice those carols ready for Christmas day

23 December
It’s nearly here. While you are planning quite how the large turkey will go into the small oven, and how to arrange the seating plan so Auntie Betsy is nowhere near Auntie Connie, look at how Christmas works

24 December
Christmas Eve — start tracking Santa online

25 December
Christmas Day — the birth of Jesus

26 December
Boxing Day — so what’s that all about?

5 January
Twelfth Night — the eve of the final day of Christmas

6 January
Twelfth Day — time to take the decorations down. Did your true love give you everything you expected?

Happy Christmas.