A Short, Interesting History Of The "Milk And Cookies" Tradition
Start writing a post
Entertainment

A Short, Interesting History Of The "Milk And Cookies" Tradition

You could be drinking Guinness in Ireland or eating mince meat pies in Australia instead.

4577
A Short, Interesting History Of The "Milk And Cookies" Tradition

As some children prepare for St. Nick's arrival, many will perch cookies and a glass of milk on the hearth, while others will simply leave Santa's goodies on an end table. Either way, most parents are excited to have an excuse to snack on sweets late into the evening as they wrap gifts. However, this is an American tradition, and other countries have their own version. Here are some interesting facts about the "milk and cookies" Christmas tradition.

According to History.com, the modern tradition can be traced back to the Great Depression in the 1930's. Parents wanted to teach their children the value of charity, so they baked chocolate chip cookies to place in stockings and poured a glass of milk for Santa, a typical childhood treat. So, for more than 80 years, children have been leaving cookies and milk out for the jolly man. "History" points out, however, that this tradition is a derivative of Norse mythology. Odin, a Norse god, rode upon Sleipner, his eight-legged horse. During the Yule season, children left carrots and other treats for the horse with the hope that Odin would recognize their altruism and give out gifts for the act.

According to an article in "The New Yorker," author Jon Michuad, notes that Toll House chocolate chip cookies were invented in the 1930's, and even though chocolate was in short supply and rationed sharply, women were encouraged to make chocolate chip cookies to send to their husbands or lovers overseas, as even the smallest dose of chocolate provided a sweet distraction from financial woes on the home front and nice reminders overseas. This train of thought evolved to meet the holidays.

Children around the world leave different treats for Santa. According to
"History," Irish children offer Santa Guiness and cookies, while children from Great Britain and Australia are known to give sherry and mince meat pies. Germany avoid foods all together by writing letters to the representation of the Christmas spirit, Christkind, decorated to catch its eye. The Swedes feed Santa hardy rice porridge.

I hope that the symbolism of milk and cookies, altruism, continues to resonate with children that prepare them and the adults that partake of these treats. You can also volunteer at a local soup kitchen or donate to Feed America to demonstrate the purpose of this symbolism in a more pertinent way. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to all!

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
Peter Truong

If you still have not figured out what you want to cook on Thanksgiving, baked macaroni and cheese is something worth considering. It is simple, affordable, and delicious. I have had many different types of baked mac and cheese and most are dry. I do not like a dry mac and cheese, it just does not seem appealing to me. If you like the creamy cheesy essence of mac and cheese, look no further, this recipe is for you.

Ingredients:

Keep Reading... Show less

As a first-year college student, I've been doing a lot of meeting and introducing myself to people, often with the classic format of "name, hometown, major".

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

This Simple 7-Step DIY Face Mask Combines Safety — And Sustainability

Instead of studying like I intended on doing today, I made a face mask for some reason and thought I'd share how I did.

67032

If you were looking for a simple way to make a mask, I am happy to share how I personally make them. I have a pretty small face in general, so I prefer having my homemade ones so they fit better. This is also a great alternative to just throwing away any clothes! Before starting, you will need to make sure you have fabric, thread, a needle, and pins; if you have a sewing machine, you obviously could use that instead of hand sewing it.

Keep Reading... Show less
Student Life

6 Ways To Handle The Stress Of Earning Your Degree From Your Childhood Bedroom

Oh so this was the room where I snuck cookies upstairs past my bedtime and stole R-Rated movies to watch when my parents were asleep and now I'm expected to earn my degree in this very same room?

36183
Photo by Aaron Burden on Unsplash

It's definitely not easy, but it's something so many kids are struggling with right now.

Keep Reading... Show less

November is such an underrated month. With all the excitement that comes with Halloween ending and the holiday season around the corner, some people skip over it and go straight to their Christmas playlist. For me though, November is the perfect time to compile a playlist of songs that bring on major nostalgia which I think is perfect for this time of year. If you're looking for something to get you in that thankful spirit before you head into the Christmas spirit or something to play while you enjoy Friendsgiving, here are some go-to songs to add to your November playlist.

Keep Reading... Show less

Taylor Swift is famous for her Easter eggs on social media that hint at what is coming next for her. Over the past few days, fans noticed a change in Swift's hair when she was accepting her win as Apple's songwriter of the year that was reminiscent of the "Red" era. Of course, this has caused widespread speculation that Swift has begun to re-record her masters.

Keep Reading... Show less

While joyful, the holiday season can also be stressful for many and that's A-O.K. Plus, with the added tension that is 2020, this year's holiday season is a lot, to put it simply.

This is your reminder to put yourself first and listen to what you're yearning for. Deep down, you know what you need to thrive and I know that you can get there.

Keep Reading... Show less
Swoon

25 'Open When' Topics And Ideas For That Special Someone In Your Life

Open When Letters are letters you can give to your special someone.

9794
Lauren McCally

Stuck on what to get the person you love the most?

And, well, let's be honest, is hard to shop for? Well then, why not send them some Open When Letters?

Keep Reading... Show less
Facebook Comments