Have you ever celebrated Christmas in July? If you have not already experienced it, you really should try it.

Fill your home with the magic of Christmas twice a year. To celebrate in July is a wonderful tradition among many communities, no matter where they are located. Originally started by immigrants in the late 19th Century, now faced with a summer Christmas, but still yearning to celebrate in winter.

Of course, that is not to say that Christmas In July is only celebrated in the southern hemisphere. These days it is very popular in the northern hemisphere as well. Many families in America, England, Europe, etc, are starting to experience this Christmas phenomena. Some have been celebrating the extra Christmas for some time.

It is a way of feeling the warmth and magic of Christmas more often, but still far enough apart to be special.

The traditional mid-year celebration is held on July 25, or on a weekend close to July 25. Some people use December 25 as a time for family, and then use July 25 as a time for special friends. Some families use both for a family Christmas, even exchanging gifts each time.

Celebrating an extra Christmas does not detract from the true meaning of the real Christmas. Everyone knows and observes the importance of December 25, but July 25 gives you that extra chance to share those magical feelings that only Christmas can bring.

There is an art to making July feel like Christmas - to really feel it like you do in December.

One of the magical aspects of Christmas is the many beautiful decorations used to adorn the Tree, to decorate the walls and windows, the table centerpiece, the staircase, the front door and the front yard. Even a grandparent can feel like a little child at this special time.

It is a time to give your treasured old decorations pride of place. One of my favorite pieces is a simple salt and pepper shaker set, in the design of Santa and Mother Christmas. They are a favorite at our dinner table whether it is December or July. It is almost as if they are part of the family now. Often a dinner guest will play with them creating a conversation for them and encouraging others to join in. It is a fantastic feeling to see others getting joy from something so special to you.

Another favorite is the candle centerpiece surrounded by dried flowers and twigs. Sometimes I wonder if it just gets in the way, but I just can't bear to part with it. It has journeyed through many family Christmases, since before my time. It is so special, it just has to be there. I tried a smaller, newer centerpiece one year and my family objected. They missed the tired, old candle and flowers. That's when I realized that it wasn't just special to me. Everyone held a special place for it in their hearts.

Sometimes the older, less fancy decorations can be much more meaningful than anything new and bright and sparkly.

So if you are a child at heart, or know someone who is, create a special magical Christmas for your loved ones to talk about for years to come. Add your special touches to the decor, to the table, and to their experience.

If you are interested, I could recommend vintage Christmas decorations as a wonderful and fulfilling collector's hobby. Just be warned that once you start, it is hard to know where to stop.