31 Reasons to Celebrate in December

Food Holidays, Family Outings and More Reasons to Smile This Month

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From Hanukkah to Christmas to New Year's Eve, there are plenty of reasons to celebrate in December—but why not add a few more fun events to the family calendar? From National Cupcake Day, to Repeal Day and everything in between, here are 31 ways to make your December a little bit brighter. 

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    December 1 – National Pie Day

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    Most of us don’t really need a reason to eat a pie, but if you do, celebrating a national holiday seems like an excellent one. From classic cherry or apple, to the ever-polarizing mincemeat, to more inventive crusty creations, today’s the day to indulge in your favorite kind of pie (Or make some space in the freezer and finish up all those leftover Thanksgiving pies)! 

  • 02 of 31
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    Your dog celebrates you every single day, so why not give him a special day of his own? Created to educate potential pet parents to the plight of mixed breed dogs (otherwise known as mutts) in animal shelters, National Mutt Day is meant to—you guessed it—celebrate all of the weird and wonderful mixed breed dogs in our lives. Plus, it’s the perfect excuse to whip up a peanut butter and dog biscuit cake for your very good boy

  • 03 of 31

    December 3 – Let’s Hug Day

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    These days, it’s extra important to spread the love. Get those warm and fuzzy feelings, and send some good vibes out into the universe, by giving someone you love a hug today. Maybe you can even get your easily embarrassed teenager to give you a quick, one-armed squeeze.  

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    December 4 – National Kitten Day

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    Cat person or dog person, man, woman or child, there’s no denying it: Kittens are pretty stinkin’ cute… even if they relentlessly push the items off of every single surface in your house. If you have a kitty, buy her a new toy in honor of her very special day. And if you don’t have a kitty, sit back, relax and simply bask in the cuteness of some sweet kitten photos

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  • 05 of 31

    December 5 – Repeal Day

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    Repeal Day, or the day Prohibition was officially repealed in the United States, can only be celebrated in one way: by enjoying your favorite beer, wine or cocktail at the local (legal!) watering hole. And if you end up celebrating Repeal Day a little too hard, check out this list of hangover remedies. You’re welcome. 

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    December 6 – National Microwave Oven Day

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    Fancy stand-mixers. Sous vide cookers. Some kitchen appliances get all the glitz and glory. But no appliance revolutionized the kitchen—or made heating up leftovers so dang simple—like the humble microwave oven. Pop some popcorn or whip up a microwavable mug cake in appreciation.

  • 07 of 31
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    When was the last time you wrote a letter… on paper? Today, ditch your smartphone and reach out to a faraway friend or family member with some good, old-fashioned snail mail. (Bonus points if you make the card yourself!) 

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    December 8 – National Brownie Day

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    As if we really need a national holiday to appreciate brownies! Whether you prefer basic, cake-like brownies, ooey gooey fudge brownies or brownies topped with bacon (yes, really) there’s no wrong way to celebrate this delicious, chocolatey holiday. 

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  • 09 of 31

    December 9 – Gingerbread Decorating Day

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    No matter its shape—man, woman, house or otherwise—no other sweet treat symbolizes the holiday season like gingerbread. Although the term “gingerbread” has been around since medieval England (it initially referred to preserved ginger), it became the dessert we all know sometime during the 15th century. Whether you eat it or simply decorate it, make today’s family activity decorating a traditional gingerbread house. 

  • 10 of 31
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    Before the craft beer movement produced some super inventive brews, the humble lager quenched thirsty bar goers and tailgaters all around the world for 800 years (and counting!). Although there are seven different types of lagers—the most popular being a Pilsner—they’re all characterized by their drinkability and low alcohol by volume. Today, raise your glass to a beer that’s packed with history—and flavor. 

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    Similar to Cyber Monday, “Green Monday” is a term coined by the online auction site eBay to describe its highest sales day in the month of the December. It’s believed that there are so many online purchases on Green Monday because it’s two weeks ahead of Christmas—so if you’re scrambling for some last minute holiday gifts, today’s your day to shop. 

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    December 12 – The First Day of Hanukkah

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    It’s the first day of Hanukkah—Hanukkah Sameach! From blessings on the Menorah to a traditional family dinner to playing with the dreidel, there are so many wonderful ways to celebrate the Festival of Lights.  

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  • 13 of 31

    December 13 – Ice Cream Day

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    For some of us, “Ice Cream Day” just means any regular Tuesday. But if crushing a pint of ice cream isn’t part of your weekly routine, today’s the day to indulge in your favorite frosty treat, whether its homemade, smushed between cookies or dairy-free

  • 14 of 31
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    Roasting chestnuts is synonymous with the holiday season—there’s even a classic holiday song about it! But, um, what are you actually supposed to do with the chestnuts once they’re roasted? Add them to stuffing, your favorite holiday desserts and even soup for a rich, nutty flavor.

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    December 15 – National Cupcake Day

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    Do you really need a national holiday to enjoy a cupcake or two? We didn’t think so. From classic cupcakes, to more decadent, inventive cupcakes, to dairy-free, vegan-friendly versions, there’s truly no wrong way to eat a cupcake.  

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    December 16 – National Chocolate-Covered-Anything Day

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    When it comes to eating, everyone has different tastes and opinions. But there are a few things we can all agree upon: Bacon is delicious, salty snacks are delicious and fresh berries are delicious. And when they’re covered in chocolate, they only get better. 

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  • 17 of 31

    December 17 – National Maple Syrup Day

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    Maple syrup is nature’s greatest gift to humans—and the perfect topping for pancakes, waffles and more. But do you know how it’s made? Here’s a science lesson for you: During the spring, warmer temperatures force sugar maple trees to turn their stored starches into sugar. When the sugar mixes with groundwater, sap–the main ingredient in maple syrup–is formed. It takes a whopping 40 gallons of sap to produce just one gallon of maple syrup!

  • 18 of 31
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    If you haven’t already baked ten dozen holiday cookies by now (or if you have and you’re not sick of it yet!) today’s the day to grab your cookie cutters and get baking. From classic gingerbread, sugar and butter cookies, to Christmas cookies from around the globe, there are innumerable ways to testing your baking chops today—and eat your bodyweight in some delicious holiday cookies.   

  • 19 of 31
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    Deck the halls with boughs of holly! Aside from Christmas trees, holly is the quintessential Christmas plant. It makes a beautiful addition to holiday wreaths and mantle décor, but don’t let your pets or children get a hold of it—the plants’ berries are toxic.

  • 20 of 31
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    Before your home is taken over by extended family visiting for the holidays, get some quality family time with your partner and kids by playing your favorite board games for a few hours. (Pssst—check out these pro tips for winning Monopoly and Scrabble!)

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  • 21 of 31
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    Why National Hamburger Day is in the middle of the winter beats us, but we can always use an excuse to indulge in a juicy hamburger! Prepped with a classic bun and American cheese or a glazed donut and bacon (yes, really), nothing beats a burger with french fries.

     

  • 22 of 31
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    The hours upon hours of baking and painstakingly decorating holiday cookies is about to pay off—it’s Cookie Exchange Day! Swap your sweets with friends, family or neighbors at a cookie trade party or gift them as a pre-Christmas treat. ‘Tis the season for giving, after all! 

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    December 23 - National Pfeffernüsse Day

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    Say hallo to your new favorite Christmas cookie! Pfeffernüsse are small, round, spiced cookies that are popular in Germany, Denmark and The Netherlands. Made with a few ingredients—flour, eggs, brown sugar, cloves, cinnamon and other fragrant spices—these cookies are super simple to make, but have tons of warm, spicy flavor. 

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    December 24 – Christmas Eve

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    What’s your family’s favorite Christmas Eve tradition? Whether you curl up on the couch with some popcorn and A Christmas Story, go caroling, feast with friends or just lay low at home, today’s a day to spend time with loved ones, nom on some Christmas cookies and prepare for tomorrow’s festivities. 

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  • 25 of 31

    December 25 – Christmas Day

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    It’s Christmas! Time for exchanging presents, hanging out with family, indulging in some delicious food and wearing your elastic waist eating pants with zero shame. See you on the couch at 3 PM. 

  • 26 of 31
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    Love ‘em or hate ‘em, candy canes are the Christmas candy. Story says that a choirmaster back in 1670 handed out the original candy canes to children to keep them quiet during Christmas mass. Now, candy canes are used for much more than quieting unruly kids—like prepping cocktailspopcorn and other sweet treats

  • 27 of 31
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    Not very crafty? It doesn’t matter! It’s virtually impossible to mess up a construction paper snowflake. But if you’re really, really not so artistic, this easy guide may come in handy. 

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    December 28 – National Card Playing Day

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    From poker, to bridge, to Old Maid, there are so many ways to show off your card sharkery today. 

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  • 29 of 31

    December 29 – Still Need To-Do Day

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    There are only three days left in the year, so you better start checking items off that to-do list! Spend a few hours knocking out the tasks you never seem to have time to do—like cleaning out the refrigerator or garage

  • 30 of 31
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    Yes, you read that right—today is Bacon Day. Believe it or not, it is possible to incorporate bacon into every single meal you eat today—from regular ol’ breakfast bacon, to delicious sandwiches, to caramel popcorn and even cocktails.  

     

  • 31 of 31

    December 31 – New Year’s Eve

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    The new year has arrived! Reflect on all the things you’ve accomplished over the last 12 months and look forward to achieving your new goals in the coming year—and celebrate with a good cocktail. (If you celebrate a little too hard, try one of these hangover cures.)