From Chicken Soup for the Soul: Book of Christmas Virtues

Suitable for Flaming

The hearth is the natural gathering place for family celebrations, so why not implement the warm ritual of burning the Yule log? Don’t have a fireplace? Don’t let that keep you from participating. Select the method that works for your family.


Traipse to the woodpile and select the nicest log to burn this Christmas. Embellish it with sprigs of evergreen, holly leaves or mistletoe. Tie the bundle with a burnable holiday ribbon.


Drill a shallow hole in a short log and fill it with a scented candle. Decorate with seasonal ornaments, artificial snow or holiday ribbon.

Display your Yule log on the hearth, mantle or table until Christmas Eve. Then, with great ceremony, light or burn your log, sing “Deck the Halls,” (which mentions the Yule log), and enjoy the whimsy and wonder of gazing into the flames.

Ancient tradition claims that saving some cooled embers to start your Yule log fire the following year will bring good fortune and, perhaps, even miracles into your home.

More stories from our partners