Candles for the winter holidays
As the glow of the summer and spring sun start to give way to the biting cold of fall and winter and the abundance of daylight dwindles, there is more and more cause for firelight and coming together. The Indian Festival of Lights, called Diwali, is a five-day Hindu festival in which oil lamps called diyas are lit and set about as decoration. Traditionally, diyas are clay lamps with cloth wicks, but you can easily find candle diyas, which are the modern alternative. In English, diya translates into light, so you can imagine how significant these lights are to Diwali.
The Indian Festival of Lights is not the only light-centric holiday in the cold season, though. There is also the Jewish Festival of lights, more commonly known as Hanukkah, which is universally associated with the Menorah. A Menorah is a nine-branched candle holder used during the eight days of Hanukkah. Starting from the right, one candle is lit for each night, except for the central ninth candle. The ninth candle is an auxiliary candle that is lit on the same night as the first candle and used to kindle the remaining seven candles. It is called the shamash and its branch is traditionally placed on a higher level that the other candles.
Besides these festivals of lights, the most celebrated American Winter holiday is also surrounded with light. That’s right! Christmas time is a time for elaborate displays of Christmas lights and lavishly decorated trees. While some prefer the quaint twinkling of soft white Christmas lights that imitate the snow, the extremes to which Christmas decorations can stretch are almost without measure. Multicolor flashing lights, dioramas reenacting famous biblical scenes, animated snowmen, and roofs adored with Santa and his reindeer are just some of the wild decorations that folks set up on their houses.
It’s not just the exteriors of homes that are set alight during the holidays, though. Folks can easily brighten their homes with festive lights strewn about their Christmas trees. Adding shimmering globular ornaments that catch the glint of the lights further enhances the holiday magic. While you cannot safely have candles adorn your tree, Christmastime is a great time to use candles to decorate your home. Red, white, and cream-colored candles will add a natural glow and warmth to your home that cannot be matched by plug-in lights.
With all the candle lighting to be done this winter, it is important to have reliable candle lighters at the ready. A standard Bic lighter will certainly get the job done, but if you are serious about candle usage in your home during the holiday season, you will want to invest in a long-tipped candle lighter. Refillable candle lighters are a great option because they are durable and difficult to lose due to their larger size. Zippo also offers adjustable flame lighters for any given situation, and you can even purchase candle lighters with flexible tips.
Written by Asher Briggs