Mittens, we have all used them in our lives, some of us probably still do. They are our favorite things to use when making snowballs or making a snowman. They keep our hands warm from the cold and crunchy snow that we pick up and throw at each other, and are a good way to make sure our hands are colorful against the bright whiteness of the snowy ground. We are here today to learn about a day just for these little colorful, fuzzy, and soft hand covers, a day called Mitten Tree Day!
History of Mitten Tree Day
Created by school teachers as a way to have a fun Christmastime activity for the children to make while they were in school. Others would claim that the holiday was created because of a book with the title “The Mitten Tree” which was written by author Candace Christiansen, in the book the main character Sarah is bundling up to walk through the cold winter weather, and on her trek she sees a group of children placing their mittens on a small dead tree.
No matter where the origin for the holiday came from, children will always enjoy making little mitten trees. But what about mittens? Where do they come from? Well, Mitten is derived from the Old French word mitaine which was an old pet name for a cat, because back then mittens were made of animal fur. The earliest mittens known to man date back to around the year 1000 A.D. and originally were used as sheaths for gloves since mittens did not have any separate finger openings to allow finger mobility. They were believed to have been made out of wool due to the discovery of a woolen mitten found in the harbor area of Dorestad in the Netherlands, determined to be from the 8th or 9th century AD based on surrounding archaeological evidence.
How to celebrate Mitten Tree Day
In order to celebrate this holiday, the best thing to do is have a bunch of mittens ready, and set them on our Christmas tree, one per each branch until we either run out of branches to use for holding the mittens, or we run out of mittens to put on the branches of the tree. Then when we’re ready we can take our best set of mittens off the tree and head on out to enjoy the wintertime fun!