Happy Boxing Day!!!

This Boxing Day post has become somewhat of an annual tradition here at Filosofa’s Word.  Occasionally I ponder doing a new one, but this one pretty much covers all the bases, so why re-invent the wheel?   So please join me in wishing all our friends in Canada, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa and the UK the very Happiest Boxing Day!!!

BoxingNo no no no no … not that kind of boxing!  Boxing Day is on December 26th, the day after Christmas, and it is a bank holiday in the UK and Canada.  A brief bit about the origins of Boxing Day …

There are a few competing stories for the origin of the name, and while none are definitive, the one that seems most commonly accepted is that the day after Christmas was when servants of the wealthy were given time off to visit their family, as they were needed to work on Christmas Day. Each servant would be given a box to take home with food, a bonus and gifts. In Britain, it was a custom for tradespeople to collect “Christmas boxes” of money or presents on the first weekday after Christmas as thanks for good service throughout the year.


Now, that said, last year our friend rawgod gave me his explanation of the Canadian celebration of Boxing Day, at least in his household as a child …

“Each year an xmas tree was brought to the house, often on xmas eve. All the decorations were brought out of storage, and hung to decorate the tree. In those days baubles were not made of plastic, but rather blown glass. They were very delicate, and much too easily broken, as my poor bum learned every year. Moving on, the tree was the centrepiece of our home xmas day, and the next day, we put all the unbroken decorations into their special boxes so they could survive to the next xmas. By suppertime everything was boxed, and stored–thus Boxing Day.”

And this is what my house looks like on this Boxing Day!boxing-day

So how do our friends up north and across the big pond celebrate Boxing Day?  I went ‘in search of …’ and came up with some fun things, though I strongly suspect that most people spend the day recuperating from Christmas.  Let’s look at a few …

There is an annual barrel rolling race in Grantchester, Cambridgeshire


Until 2004 when the UK imposed a ban on fox-hunting, it used to be a tradition on Boxing Day.  Last year, Colette commented that legal or not, fox-hunting …

“As for fox hunting (despite tradition, I hate it), it still occurs. Meets go out following scent trails by people sent up ahead. The hounds are supposed to follow that and eventually find the people. Horses follow. But the hounds very often find real foxes which they tear to shreds if found. I am opposed to this horrific practice. The whole industry (and it is a lucrative industry) is a travesty akin to Bear Baiting or Cock Fighting, both long outlawed in Britain.”

Boxing-Day-2.jpgI understand that sports are big on boxing day, with horse racing and football.  But remember that what they call ‘football’ is actually what we in the U.S. refer to as soccer.  I asked one of my friends across the pond once, when he mentioned ‘football’ if he was referring to the kind with an ovoid pigskin ball where large people try to kill one another, or the kind that is played with a geometric-patterned black & white ball.  I was informed in no uncertain terms that he was referring to ‘real’ football and that what we called football was but a cheap knock-off. I never made that mistake again!

soccerAnd then there is shopping.  One article I read compared Boxing Day shopping with Black Friday, the day after Thanksgiving, in the U.S.  Apparently all the stores have huge sales.  But my question here is … who has any money after Christmas?

shoppingAnd so, to our friends across the big pond, however you spend Boxing Day, I hope it is a fun and/or relaxing day for you!  Happy Boxing Day!!!


37 thoughts on “Happy Boxing Day!!!

  1. A belated Happy Boxing Day greeting to you, too! The traditional British version is the one I’ve always known, not those strange Canadian customs! I celebrated by watching proper football (not handegg) and my team won 3-0 so it was a perfect day – until the England cricket team came along to spoil it!

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    • Ha ha … “handegg” … I like that! I’ll never forget one time when I asked a UK friend if he was referring to football or soccer, and he said there was only ever one ‘football’ and it was NOT played with an ovoid pigskin! I learned! I’m glad you got to bask in the joy of a win for your team, albeit briefly. I gather you don’t care for cricket, eh?

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      • I’ve never understood how a game played by a battalion of terminators, only two of whom ever kick the ball, can be called ‘football.’ I’ll stick with the real thing! Actually, I love cricket: the problem is that the England team are utterly abysmal at present. The commenter from Australia who said that the Boxing Day test lasts for five days was being very generous to us: it didn’t even reach two and a half days!

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        • Oh my … it makes me glad I never really got into sports, though I did used to play on the Honda softball team when I worked for Honda! I was a decent pitcher, a really good hitter, but I couldn’t run at all, so they always had a “pinch runner”, somebody to run the bases once I had hit the ball. Ahhhhh … the younger days … 👵

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  2. To begin, I sent my text before I looked at Word Press, just so you know. LuL.
    Now, I learned something about Boxing Day in Canada nowadays, 65 years after my old Boxing Day experiences, before my mother died.
    This is the DAY in Canada that most retailers makes their biggest profits IN THE WHOLE DAMN YEAR, and it has been that way since the turn of the century. I am not a shopper, certainly not a Boxing Day Shopper, so who knew.
    Before I answer your question above, I want you ask one of my own. With Boxing Day Sales pretty much equal to Black Friday Sales in the USA, the stores give 50% to 75% off on all their leftover xmas goods. HOW THE HELL CAN THEY BE MAKING THEIR BIGGEST PROFITS OF THE YEAR TODAY WHEN THEY SHOULD BE LOSING MONEY CONSIDERING THE HUGE MARKDOWNS? Now to answer that question. Pre xmas markups are so high as to boggle the mind of non-capitalists everywhere. The thing is, retailers know for the most part their customers are only going to buy enough presents for their loved ones to have something to open xmas morning. You know, the socks, pyjamas, ugly sweaters, a few cheap toys etc. What THEY are preparing is having huge mark-ups before xmas so when they give these great markdowns on Boxing Day, they are still making BIG PROFITS.
    Now, about your question, “Where does all this money come from?” It comes from gifting XMAS MONEY. Money is now the most common xmas present in Canada because the givers know people can buy for themselves what they want for a third the price they would be paying before xmas day if they actually bought the gifts then. We are, in Canada, nothing if not sharp shoppers, or at least we like to think we are. We are not going to pay the TOTALLY EXORBITANT PRE-XMAS PRICES when one day later we think we are paying greatly reduced prices. It is now a game between retailers and purchasers as to who is getting the better deals! Smart shoppers watch prices all year round, and they make sure on Boxing Day they are not overpaying for the goods they buy, while retailers are doing their damnedest to sell their goods on Boxing Day with a 5% or higher mark-up OVER USUAL despite the “Great Savings” they say they are giving.
    Boxing Day is no longer about boxing plastic ornaments. Even family heirlooms are more plastic than blown glass because over the years the glass ones have mostly been broken. No, Boxing Day is now a boxing match between prize-fighters, Smart shoppers vs. Greedy Retailers. And people wonder why Gail and I no longer celebrate Christmas, aside from the fact we are atheists. It is not just over-commervialized, but capitalism at its ugliest.
    And yet, people still get caught in it, because everyone else is doing it, and they want to be part of the crowd. THAT I will never understand. Be religious if you want to be, but be smart too.

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    • Actually, it was your text that reminded me it was even Boxing Day! Thank you!

      The day after Christmas is also the biggest retail day in this country most years, as everyone hurries out to catch the post-holiday sales and return unwanted Christmas gifts!

      We don’t typically take our tree and decorations down until after New Year’s, but this year we’re going to have to take the tree down tomorrow or Wednesday, for the branches are sagging badly and it is dropping pine needles everywhere! Yes, yes, I know your views on a cut tree, and in a way I agree with you, but at least this tree, that was already cut anyway, had a happy, loving home for 3 weeks!

      We do still celebrate Christmas as a secular, not a religious holiday. We love the lights, the spirit of the season, not just the day. Even the kitties seen to enjoy it! Holiday love ‘n hugs to you and Gail!


      • I can only say this one way, no meanness intended. If you buy a dead tree this year, they will kill a tree for you next year — whether you buy it or not.
        It is part of our culture, I know, but so apparently are school shootings. We heed to get rid of both.
        Once you get used to the idea, a fake tree serves as a symbol for a living tree. And it saves you from spending for a new tree year after year after year.

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        • We did have an artificial tree last year, as by the time we went ‘tree shopping’, there were none to be had, and I hated that tree! It didn’t even look real to me, had no happy scent to it, and I swore I would do without a tree if it happened again! However, in the future I think I will get a living tree with root base and have it planted somewhere after the holiday … do you consider that a reasonable compromise?


          • Most definitely, though I would suggest you find one that can survive inside if you can. If you leave it outside for most of the year, you run the risk of certain bugslaying their eggs in the tree. Then, when you bring it inside, the eggs hatch because they think it is Spring, and your cats will be going crazy trying to catch all the little guys. (Been there, done that!) The other alternative is to shop carefully for a fake tree you can live with. It took us two years (Gail loves having a decorated tree for this time of year! ) but we found one. When we put it away we do not even takes the lights off it. They were put on to stay, and that saves alot of time putting it up and taking it down. The best time to shop for such a tree is right now, because the stores want to get rid of them. If your lucky you may even find one in the garbage behind the store, if you don’t mind shopping that way. But be sure the one you buy is one you can live with. Otherwise you are just throwing away your money.
            Back to thelive tree, make sure you put it in a big pot, so it can grow good roots, and water it faithfully. It will pretty much stop growing at some point, when it becomes root-bound. The good thing about a live tree, the cats will get used to it being around, and they will eventually stop trying to knock the decorations off. But be sure to cover the pot with something to prevent the cats trying to use it as a litter box, lol.

            All this, and you know, Jill, you can do what you want however you want. You don’t have to please me. But I will be delighted if you do!

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  3. As both Christmas Day and Boxing Day are public holidays that are Mondayised in Aotearoa New Zealand, today, Monday the 27th is a holiday where most businesses are closed. Tomorrow will also be a holiday, but most retail outlets will be open and having their Boxing Day sales, which typically last until New Year’s Eve. As far as I’m aware, there is no tradition attached to Boxing day here apart from it being a public holiday and retailers offering post Christmas bargains.

    With Christmas Day, Boxing Day, New Years Day and the day after New Year’s Day all being paid public holidays, many employees use up part of their annual leave on the three business days between Christmas and New Year to have an extended break, this year finishing work on Friday the 24th of December and returning to work on Wednesday the 5th of January – a total of eleven consecutive days of vacation, but using up only three days of annual leave. Also many non-retail businesses close during this period.

    Typically, Boxing day has been the day with the largest retail turnover – who can resist a sale bargain, but over recent years we’ve imported the US Black Friday sales (but not Thanksgiving) and this year they surpassed Boxing Day in retail sales volume.

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    • Years ago (before I retired in 2008) I worked for a publishing company and the entire week between Christmas and New Year’s, I was nearly the only person at work! Everybody took that week off! I preferred to work, rather than have to do cooking, packing decorations away, etc. at home 😉

      Even though here in the U.S., we don’t officially celebrate Boxing Day, for many it is a day to ‘box stuff up’, and it is typically the biggest retail day of the year, when everyone returns unwanted Christmas gifts! Happy Holidays to you and yours, my friend!

      Liked by 1 person

    • A walk to recover from Christmas sounds heavenly … and it has been warm enough, but I still get dizzy just walking to the kitchen, so I guess a nice long walk will have to wait a while.


  4. Boxing Day here? We lounge around, watch the Boxing Day test cricket match, which begins at the M(elbourne) C(ricket) G(round)….and goes for another four days! The Sydney to Hobart yacht race also takes off and many silly people are racing to the Boxing day sales. And so the Summer holidays begin. 😎

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    • I like your way of celebrating Boxing Day better than some others, like Carla!!! I can get into just lounging around, although the cricket match would likely put me to sleep! Normally I would be jealous when your summer is starting and our winter is, but this year winter has seemed more like spring with temps in the 60s (F) or 10° to 15° (C). Enjoy your summer!

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  5. This year is the first time I heard of Boxing Day. Our landlord and friend is British and he keeps bringing it up. I thought it was some Panamanian thing but now I know it is in his history. Who knew?

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  6. Pingback: HAPPY BOXING DAY. | Ramblings of an Occupy Liberal

  7. I am in Ontario, Jill and I agree with rawgod. That was the day we “boxed up” all the ornaments and decorations. If anything had to be returned after Christmas, we boxed it up as well to return to the store the next day as stores used to be closed on Boxing Day. I actually took down my tree and boxed up all my decorations today. Happy Holidays!

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    • Cat … d-d-did you say “Cat Appreciation Day”???? Oh my, I had no idea! Well, I appreciate the fact that I haven’t been shredded yet this weekend and they haven’t broken anything, so … okay, I appreciate Oliver, Pandi, Tiger, Boo, and Izzy! 😼😼😼😼😼 xx


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