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Did you know?
  • The original Rudolph did not have a red nose. In that day and age, red noses were seen as an indicator of chronic alcoholism and Montgomery Ward didn’t want him to look like a drunkard. To complete the original picture, he was almost named Reginald or Rollo.
  • The Christmas wreath was originally hung as a symbol of Jesus. The holly represents his crown of thorns and the red berries the blood he shed.
  • The three traditional colors of most Christmas decorations are red, green and gold. Red symbolizes the blood of Christ, green symbolized life and rebirth, and gold represents light, royalty and wealth.
  • Tinsel was invented in 1610 in Germany and was once made of real silver.
  • The oldest artificial Christmas trees date back to the late 1800s and were made of green raffia (think grass hula skirts) or dyed goose feathers. Next the Addis Brush Company used their machinery that wove toilet brushes to create pine-like branches for artificial Christmas trees that were less flammable and could hold heavier decorations.
  • ‘Jingle Bells’ – the popular Christmas song was composed by James Pierpont in Massachusetts, America. It was, however, written for thanksgiving and not Christmas.
  • Coca-Cola was the first company that used Santa Claus during the winter season for promotion.
  • Hallmark introduced their first Christmas cards in 1915.
  • The first recorded date of Christmas being celebrated on December 25th was in 336, during the time of the Roman Emperor Constantine. A few years later, Pope Julius I officially declared that the birth of Jesus would be celebrated on that day.
  • Santa Claus's sleigh is led by eight reindeer: Dasher, Dancer, Prancer, Vixen, Comet, Cupid, Dunder (variously spelled Donder and Donner), and Blixem (variously spelled Blixen and Blitzen), with Rudolph being a 20th-century inclusion.
  • Outdoor Christmas lights on homes evolved from decorating the traditional Christmas tree and house with candles during the Christmas season. Lighting the tree with small candles dates back to the 17th century and originated in Germany before spreading to Eastern Europe.
  • That big, jolly man in the red suit with a white beard didn’t always look that way. Prior to 1931, Santa was depicted as everything from a tall gaunt man to a spooky-looking elf. He has donned a bishop's robe and a Norse huntsman's animal skin. When Civil War cartoonist Thomas Nast drew Santa Claus for Harper's Weekly in 1862, Santa was a small elflike figure who supported the Union. Nast continued to draw Santa for 30 years, changing the color of his coat from tan to the red he’s known for today.
  • Christmas 2018 countdown has already begun. Will you be ready???
  • Why do we love Christmas? It's all about the traditions. In this chaotic world we can miss the "good old days." Christmas reminds us of that time.

Chuck

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Everything posted by Chuck

  1. The PlanetChristmas community self-moderates. What in the world does self-moderate mean???? I rely on everyone to follow our three fundamental rules: family friendly, positive and Christmas centric. Anyone should feel comfortable allowing their six year old child or 100 year old mother to wander around PlanetChristmas and the forums. If you see a post violating any of our three rules before I do, please send me a private message (at the upper right of this page underneath the buttons) or high priority email at [email protected] and I will address the issue. PlanetChristmas has zero tolerance for rule breakers. Violators will lose all rights with no notification. Your help is most appreciated.
  2. Chuck

    Forum Guidelines

    The PlanetChristmas community self-moderates. What in the world does self-moderate mean???? I rely on everyone to follow our three fundamental rules: family friendly, positive and Christmas centric. Anyone should feel comfortable allowing their six year old child or 100 year old mother to wander around PlanetChristmas and the forums. If you see a post violating any of our three rules before I do, please send me a private message (at the upper right of this page underneath the buttons) or high priority email at [email protected] and I will address the issue. PlanetChristmas has zero tolerance for rule breakers. Violators will lose all rights with no notification. Your help is most appreciated.
  3. The PlanetChristmas community self-moderates. What in the world does self-moderate mean???? I rely on everyone to follow our three fundamental rules: family friendly, positive and Christmas centric. Anyone should feel comfortable allowing their six year old child or 100 year old mother to wander around PlanetChristmas and the forums. If you see a post violating any of our three rules before I do, please send me a private message (at the upper right of this page underneath the buttons) or high priority email at [email protected] and I will address the issue. PlanetChristmas has zero tolerance for rule breakers. Violators will lose all rights with no notification. Your help is most appreciated.
  4. The PlanetChristmas community self-moderates. What in the world does self-moderate mean???? I rely on everyone to follow our three fundamental rules: family friendly, positive and Christmas centric. Anyone should feel comfortable allowing their six year old child or 100 year old mother to wander around PlanetChristmas and the forums. If you see a post violating any of our three rules before I do, please send me a private message (at the upper right of this page underneath the buttons) or high priority email at [email protected] and I will address the issue. PlanetChristmas has zero tolerance for rule breakers. Violators will lose all rights with no notification. Your help is most appreciated.
  5. The PlanetChristmas community self-moderates. What in the world does self-moderate mean???? I rely on everyone to follow our three fundamental rules: family friendly, positive and Christmas centric. Anyone should feel comfortable allowing their six year old child or 100 year old mother to wander around PlanetChristmas and the forums. If you see a post violating any of our three rules before I do, please send me a private message (at the upper right of this page underneath the buttons) or high priority email at [email protected] and I will address the issue. PlanetChristmas has zero tolerance for rule breakers. Violators will lose all rights with no notification. Your help is most appreciated.
  6. The PlanetChristmas community self-moderates. What in the world does self-moderate mean???? I rely on everyone to follow our three fundamental rules: family friendly, positive and Christmas centric. Anyone should feel comfortable allowing their six year old child or 100 year old mother to wander around PlanetChristmas and the forums. If you see a post violating any of our three rules before I do, please send me a private message (at the upper right of this page underneath the buttons) or high priority email at [email protected] and I will address the issue. PlanetChristmas has zero tolerance for rule breakers. Violators will lose all rights with no notification. Your help is most appreciated.
  7. The PlanetChristmas community self-moderates. What in the world does self-moderate mean???? I rely on everyone to follow our three fundamental rules: family friendly, positive and Christmas centric. Anyone should feel comfortable allowing their six year old child or 100 year old mother to wander around PlanetChristmas and the forums. If you see a post violating any of our three rules before I do, please send me a private message (at the upper right of this page underneath the buttons) or high priority email at [email protected] and I will address the issue. PlanetChristmas has zero tolerance for rule breakers. Violators will lose all rights with no notification. Your help is most appreciated.
  8. Back in "the old days" we had a little used "spellcheck" button in the editor bar when creating PlanetChristmas posts. The button is missing right now but there are some very easy fixes. Using Internet Explorer and wish it had a spell checker so your PlanetChristmas posts could be error-free (at least with spelling)? There are a couple of options. ieSpell: www.iespell.com Speckie: www.speckie.com You have to click a button for ieSpell to work and it does a good job. Speckie checks your work in real-time and quickly adds the little squiggly line under the suspect words. It works for me most of the time... but every now and then it seems to get confused (just like me.) Use a spellchecker and impress your friends.
  9. In anticipation of another busy Christmas season, the PlanetChristmas forums are going through one last major upgrade... and we're right in the middle of it. In this case, the main engine (by Invision Power) has been updated and it's a bit like swapping out the dashboard in your car while driving down the road... every piece of information is there... but some things have moved and there's all kinds of new buttons to push. I'll admit to being a bit overwhelmed. Please hang in there as I slowly make tweaks, get things kinda like they were while also allowing for new features. Some of the immediate changes are in your profile (look at the top right of this screen, click the down arrow next to your login name and goto "My Settings".) In the good old days you coud have a profile photo and a different avatar photo. In this new world, you have only one photo but during the upgrade process avatars were not migrated to your profile photo... that's a lot of words to say you might see a broken image link next to your posts. Simply go into your profile settings, click "Change your photo..." and follow your nose. The text editor for creating messages is different than what we're used to. It's actually an industry standard (CKEditor). Buttons are different and some are missing right now (think spell check.) Again, don't worry because the fix is on the way. There's a gazillion new features. Hover your cursor over message descriptions and watch details pop-up. The list is endless. In my mind the new 2011 forums are a cross between the computer bulletin boards of the old days and the social media sites of nowadays. The challenge is us old folks have trouble keeping up. Now that I think about it, there are times when I miss 8-track tapes More to come. Please stay tuned.
  10. The staff is starting to piece together the next PlanetChristmas magazine and we're looking for Christmas Expo attendees willing to write articles about their experiences at the event. Tell us what you learned / experienced / did in Gatlinburg and feel free to share some of your high resolution pictures. Never written an article for a magazine? It's easy. Don't worry about the number of words but focus on the content. Tell your story in a way you're proud of. If needed, our editors will clean up spelling and grammar issues to make sure you look great. Please submit your article to [email protected] Thanks! p.s. we do reserve the right to edit your article based on space available in the magazine.
  11. No shirts this time for three reasons. 1. I always get stuck with the odd sizes no one wants (think super small or XXXXXXXXL) so they end up as really expensive rags around the house. 2. The more vendors give to sponsor shirts the less discount they can give when selling their wares. 3. My wife has banned me from bringing home anymore shirts from tradeshows Bottom line: happy wife = happy life
  12. The Cat5 couplers work great. Been using them for years to connect light controllers where the data cable isn't quite long enough. Use a bit of common sense and keep couplers out of damp areas. p.s. Stay away from the really cheap couplers, though. You get what you pay for holds true.and the last thing anyone needs is an intermittent coupler during your big reveal.
  13. Feel like a little bit of real time chatting? We've just added it. Not exactly the most high tech addition in the world... in fact it brings back memories of telephone party lines from the old days (when several homes shared the same telephone line and anyone could pick up to listen in on the conversation.) Look for "Chat" in the menu bar above just below the PlanetChristmas logo. Talk to you soon!
  14. Chuck

    Go Go Dancers

    Nice! Is the dog part of the wireframes
  15. The PlanetChristmas forum upgrade happened late last night and everything went smoothly. For awhile there were two identical forums running. The old forum was taken off line and the new brought on-line... then the trouble started. We had a heck of a time getting some internet DNS issues worked out but things are coming back to life. The first thing you should notice is, well, nothing. The forum is identical to yesterday but behind the scenes it's running on a newer/bigger/faster server somewhere in the Internet cloud. Please send me an email if you see any oddities. [email protected]
  16. We've been experiencing some delays in the PlanetChristmas forums the last few months. We are hosted on a computer in a well air conditioned datacenter somewhere in Texas but there are times when we need more horsepower than is available. Irritating. I've explored alternatives, including shifting our forums to a "facebook like" format and letting some of you play with a test version. The public reaction was positive. The private emails to me were... well... not-so-positive. Facebook has its place but the consensus is the PlanetChristmas forums don't fit the facebook format. Alrighty. I can take a hint. Our forums use Invision Power Board as the engine. We've been on version 3.1.4 from the beginning and version 3.2 will be released soon. I've been playing with the beta for months and have been most impressed. The ironic thing is this new version is adding some "facebook like" features. The overall look and feel of the system is the same but there's a boatload of new features that really polish the product. We're destined for version 3.2. In anticipation of new/bigger/better/faster software and another busy Christmas season, we're moving to a new/bigger/better/faster host in another well air conditioned datacenter. This host specializes in Invision Power Board so the servers are tweaked for better performance. During this transition, there might be a few hours when the forums are "frozen in time" but this should be during a very slow time of the day. Thanks so much for being part of PlanetChristmas. Your job is to put smiles on faces and make lifelong memories with your decorations. My job is to make you successful.
  17. Three rules: we're positive, family friendly and Christmas Centric. There are plenty of other places on the internet to handle non-Christmas items.
  18. We're looking for a computer geek that will be in charge of the back-office at Christmas Expo. What in the world does that mean? We need someone that can get to the convention center early in the mornings (7:30am EDT), fire up the computers/printers for registration and make sure registration runs smoothly. It will be busy most mornings but calm down a few hours later so you can enjoy Christmas Expo. It would be advantages to be a computer geek because computers tend to act up at the worst possible times. What's this job pay? You'll receive a really nice PlanetChristmas cap and a free pass to wander around into any class at Christmas Expo. I might even buy a lunch or two for you. Then there's the thanks you'll receive from the entire PlanetChristmas community. Interested? Shoot me an email at [email protected] . See ya at the end of June!
  19. Sharp eyes... kinda. We're having to do some major juggling to accommodate the larger-than-anticipated crowds. The advanced sessions in classroom 1 will be intense. In classroom 2, the sessions are easier. To keep things interesting we're going to have a random session open to the public... meaning anyone can attend that session without cost. See ya at the end of the month!
  20. You know that irritating channel thehotel TV defaults to when you first turn it on? Seems in Gatlinburg it’sa “special” channel most of the hotels subscribe to and guess who’s on it formuch of June? Christmas Expo! Checkout the commercial: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UsrlpSMkCGU Recognize the voice? ThinkDemented Elf.
  21. I remember trying out for the chorus in 6th grade. I also remember the teacher saying in the nicest way I should pursue the tambourine. I can take a hint so I don't sing... not even in the shower and it's for the good of mankind. But... There appears to be plenty of people rather gifted at singing so we're setting up a stage at Christmas Expo we cleverly call "Christmas Karaoke" where anyone can get up in front of a crowd and let us know how Jingle Bells is supposed to sound. This will be fun! Here's the challenge. I have no idea how Karaoke works. I just assumed I could load something on a laptop, plug it into our sound system, add a microphone and watch the magic happen. I've spent the last half hour educating myself on the internet and now I'm more confused than ever. If you have some Karaoke experience, I sure would like to hear from you. Please shoot my an email at [email protected] See ya at the end of June!
  22. We have managed to get too many teachers wanting to teach too much in too little time so the schedule is being juggled daily to fit as much in as possible. Keep an eye on the website and it will eventually catch up with the absolute latest.
  23. It worked! The odd times got your attention. It's an old trick. Start a meeting at 9:00 and people will drift in late because the time is so "forgetable.". Start the meeting at 9:02 and they remember.
  24. At past events we were able to set the final education schedule months in advance. Not so in 2011. Right when we say we're done making changes another great instructor pops up and wants to teach. We're not good at saying no, so the schedule stays in flux. Watch for an update near the end of this month.
  25. Find vendor info at http://www.christmasexpo.com/Vendors.htm#Interested_ near the bottom of the page.
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