A foundational backbone for financially challenged families to keep the wolf of Child Protective Services away from their doors and children is access to affordable child care – 24/7 regardless of holidays.
Not as often celebrated in the United States, today is Boxing Day – a holiday celebrated after Christmas Day. Originating as a day to remember, by gifting, those people who support our everyday lives. In the 1800s, the rich in Britain used to “box up” gifts for people, especially their servants and helpers, and present these gifts to them on the day after Christmas, thus earning the day its name, “Boxing Day”.
In addition, during that time, churches used to collect money from their congregations throughout the year in a box, and then “un-box” the money after Christmas Day and hand it out to the poor as alms and charity. Thus, the day after Christmas got this identity. Daycare may not be a charity but it is a kind of charity for all those people who must continue to work throughout the holidays. Nurses, store clerks, law enforcement (by the way, most of these people are NOT highly paid) etc.
An interesting point to note about Boxing Day is that it coincides with St Stephen’s Day, a day that honors the death of a Christian martyr. One of my favorite Christmas carols is Good King Wenceslas which tells a story of a Bohemian king who goes on a journey, braving harsh winter weather, to give alms to a poor peasant on the Feast of Stephen (December 26). Blogger’s note – my husband’s name is Stephen and that is probably the whole reason I became enamored with this song. Anyway, during the journey, the king’s page is about to give up the struggle against the cold weather, but is enabled to continue by following the king’s footprints, step for step, through the deep snow. The legend is based on the life of the historical Saint Wenceslaus I, Duke of Bohemia (907–935). Good King Wenceslas has a rich history, appealing medieval feel, and bone-chilling winter imagery.