Canadians expect to spend more this Christmas shopping season

Many shifting back to in-store shopping, says new report from PwC Canada

Canadians expect to spend more this Christmas shopping seasonChristmas will soon be here and in many ways the shopping season has already begun. A new report says Canadians will spend an average of $1,563 this Christmas shopping season, a 3.7 per cent hike over the previous year. According to PwC Canada's 2018 Holiday Outlook report, eight out of 10 Canadians plan to spend…

The overwhelming imagery of the Crucifixion

The child that was me experienced the lead-up to Easter as foreboding rather than inspiring

The overwhelming imagery of the CrucifixionI was never big on Easter. As a Catholic schoolboy in 1950s Ireland, Easter played second fiddle to Christmas. In fact, the competition wasn’t even close. Christmas had several advantages. For one thing, school holidays were longer. Whereas Easter only delivered a week and a half, Christmas tacked on a further full week. The tone,…

’Twas the night before Christmas …

The lights will be artfully strung, the family heirloom decorations will be carefully hung, and the boys will murmur appropriate and truthful praise

’Twas the night before Christmas …It’s the week before Christmas and all through the forest it’s cold, wet and dark at 5 a.m. when I awaken. We’re going to bed at 9 p.m. in this part of the world because the sun sets at 4:30 p.m. and it’s pitch dark at 5:30. The leaves have definitively fallen from all of…

Silent Night, holy night, all is calm, all is bright

For 199 years, this beloved Christmas carol has resonated. More than 26,000 versions have been recorded and it enticed soldiers to lay down their arms

Silent Night, holy night, all is calm, all is brightSilent Night, which is probably the most famous Christmas carol of all, will be 199 years old this Christmas Eve. It was first performed at the parish church in the Austrian village of Oberndorf during midnight mass on Dec. 24, 1818. And, fittingly, the performers included the two men who’d written it. The words had…

Not feeling the holiday magic?

There are no perfect holidays. Accept your limitations and honour those activities that make you feel good when you do them

Not feeling the holiday magic?Not feeling it this season? Started getting stressed as soon as you saw the Christmas decorations go up the day after Halloween? I’m guessing that it’s not because you’re famous for being able to give the Grinch a run for his money. You can get by most of the time without people thinking your heart…

Give of yourself to get this Christmas

I don’t have a surplus of cash to donate during the Christmas season. Being a Salvation Army bell ringer is my way of giving back

Give of yourself to get this ChristmasI don’t have a surplus of cash to donate at Christmastime – or any time of year. I can’t afford to put a bill in the kettle every time I encounter a Salvation Army bell ringer. And yet, I’ve found a way to give to their worthy cause this Christmas. I donate my time. It…

Christmas gift ideas for TV and music lovers

The Gadget Guy offers you ideas from TV streaming boxes to wireless earphones to handheld mics to hi-fidelity earplugs

Christmas gift ideas for TV and music loversMusic- and TV-related gadgets are always safe bets for gifts, so here are a few of my top picks this Christmas season. Roku Express Is the family going to cut the cable cord this year? Or are you just looking for an easy way to stream HD video and high-quality digital audio? Consider putting a…

A Secret Santa challenge to one and all

Holiday gift-giving isn’t supposed to induce panic. Let's all scale back, reconnect, celebrate memories and build new traditions

A Secret Santa challenge to one and allThere was a moment, one Christmas morning not too long ago, when we realized we had overdone it. After opening our dozens of gifts, we couldn’t move from our seats around my sister’s living room. It had finally happened. We had too many gifts. It was an embarrassment of riches. As our children mature, they…

Christmas at home creating our own family traditions

The process of creating the new traditions of Christmas continues year by year

Christmas at home creating our own family traditionsVANCOUVER, B.C. Dec. 23, 2016/ Troy Media/ – For nine years now three generations of our family have been gathering at Skelhp House – our family home – in the coastal rainforest beside the mostly quiet waters of Jervis Inlet to celebrate Christmas. This time together is the most important we spend as a family each year…

What the truly tech-enabled Christmas of 2026 might look like

We will all get exactly what we want at Christmas in the tech-enabled world that awaits us a decade from now

What the truly tech-enabled Christmas of 2026 might look likeLONDON, U.K. Dec. 23, 2016/ Troy Media/ – We futurists generally spend our time looking at potential scenarios for big issues such as artificial intelligence and society, the changing role of money, the relationship between man and machine, the future of business, and the nature of tomorrow’s governments. So as a bit of light relief, I asked…