Today marks the shortest day and longest night occurring in the Northern Hemisphere. The WINTER SOLSTICE! We call it the first day of winter as do astronomers also. It happens in December 20, 21,22,or 23, although the 23rd is rare, not since 1903. The word, solstice, is derived from the Latin word "solstitium" which means the "sun stands still". On this day it moves so slowly it seems to stand still and also reaches its southernmost position over the Tropic of Capricorn. This day is cause for celebrations in many countries. Stonehenge in the United Kingdom is a popular place for people to gather in both summer and winter to watch the sun. In Ireland a large monument was built between 3000 BC and 2500 BC. It is believed to have been designed to capture the Solstice sun's rays. In 2012, December 21 was considered "doomsday" by some people, as the Mayan calendar ended that day. Now that you have had your history lesson, I will just say-I'm glad the days will be getting longer. I like more sunshine!