Thursday, December 15, 2011

Mistletoe Madness Blog Hop: The Magic of Stories

Stories are an important part of our society and culture. We find stories in the books we read, movies we watch, painting we study, music we listen to, even in the news of the day and the liturgy of our religion. You can see its impact on the people in every culture whether being listened to or told and even re-told. Storytellers have shaped our society and our ways of thinking. Their stories are used to entertain, teach, and pass on knowledge and wisdom. Stories define our values, desires, dreams, as well as our prejudices and hatreds.

No one knows when story telling began. All we know is that it is an ancient well respected art and played an important part is society. We can only guess what promoted the first story. Perhaps a hunter came back from the hunt and told of his heroic deeds or was it to explain why he came back from the hunt empty handed? Did a mother try to calm a child’s fears or doubts? Did a Shaman or tribal leader tell of an important event? The storyteller held an important position in these early societies. They were typically the priest, judge or ruler. People found their stories interesting and listened to them. Storytelling days were considered important.

Before man learned to write, he had to rely on his memory to learn anything. For this he had to be a good listener. With the importance of the story established, the listeners paid close attention. These stories were not only told amongst themselves but, when people traveled they shared their stories with others in faraway lands when they traveled. And when they returned home, they brought back exciting new stories of exotic places and people.

The oldest surviving story is believed to be the epic tale of Gilgamesh. This story tells of the deeds of the famous Sumerian king. The earliest known record of storytelling was found in the Egypt. Cheops’ scribes recorded the stories told by Cheops’ sons who told their father stories to entertain him.

There are all kinds of stories myths, legends, fairy tales, trickster stories, fables, ghost tales, hero stories, and epic adventures, and that over time these stories were told, and retold. Passed down from one generation to the next, these stories reflect the wisdom and knowledge of early people. Stories were often used to explain the supernatural or unexplainable, confusing events and disasters. It was common for people to believe in the stories of gods that bound them to a common heritage and belief.

Most historians and psychologists believe that storytelling is one of the many things that define and bind our humanity. Humans are perhaps the only animals that create and tell stories.

The giveaway for the Mistletoe Madness Blog Hop: Leave me a comment telling me your favorite story.  One person randomly selected on December 23rd will win a $10 Amazon gift card.

Links to the other stops on the blog hop are on the right. Visit Blog Hop Central from December 16th to the 23rd for a chance to win prizes including the Grand Prize ** a Nook Color ** pre-loaded with books from our sponsor authors. Here is a direct link to the Grand Prize entry form. Happy Holidays and good luck everyone.


  1. Probably too simple but my favorite story has always been The Three Little Pigs. I remember hearing this from my grandfather when I was young and still tell it to my grandkids.

    Of course it must be accompanied with the physical tugging of toes while saying the " This little pig when to market, this little pig stayed at home, etc,"

    Thanks for the giveaway and have a very happy and relaxing Christmas season.

    Carol T
    buddytho {at} gmail DOT com

  2. @buddytho

    The stories I heard when I was little are somehow my favorite. I hope your grandchildren enjoy the stories.

    Thanks for stopping by and good luck on the blog hop.

    Have a great holiday.

    ... Ruth

  3. I love storie sin general but the one from antiquity a bit more. I was facinated when we translated the story of antlantys in Latin class

    thanks you for this giveaway

    all the best


  4. More stories than the actual written word, but the stories that my parents and relatives would tell of events from their own life. These are stories that you will find nowhere else and truly they mean more than any documented fiction.

    Merry Christmas and thanks for joining the hop!


  5. I love old fairy think that this same stories have been told for generations!!

    melissaseclecticbookshelf (at) gmail (dot) com

    ♥ Melissa @ Melissa's Eclectic Bookshelf

  6. I love the story of Cinderella. When I was younger it was all about finding the perfect prince charming. When I got older I realized the it is about finding that perfect man. It was about overcoming odds. Even if you have people that are not always nice to you that good stuff still happens. That goodness prevails in the end. My favorite story as a kid, and now it is also my daughters favorite story.
    Thanks for the great giveaway and being involved in this fun hop. Have a happy holidays.

  7. How fun! Love the blog hop. My favorite story, appropriate for this time of year, is 'Twas the Night Before Christmas. When I was little, there was a musical version I used to play all year long on my record player. Would love to find it again. Thanks Ruth. On to the next.

  8. I also enjoy the old fairy tales, so much history is evident in their telling.

  9. Have always enjoyed the fairy tales, but my favorite story of all time is the Gift of Magi.
    Thanks for the great bloghop

    skpetal at hotmail dot com

  10. My dad read The night before christmas to us every year on christmas eve. Then my husband read it to our kids. After all these years, I have it memorized.

    I remember studying Giglamesh in college.

  11. I love the epic of Gilgalmesh! It's a fine example of how many ancient themes still resonate with us today.

    One of my favorite stories is "The Little Prince." I'm working on my French so I can read it in its native language.

  12. I love Little Red Riding Hood, but Hansel and Gretel gave me goosebumps. Another I remember from growing up is one my dad told us as kids.

  13. My favorite story when I was growing up was Peter Pan. I still love it.

  14. I love so many stories, I couldn't pick. But something I did single out, was the opening for the Disney Show, where they sang, "When you wish upon a star...makes no difference who you are..." I loved the song, believed the words and most anything Walt Disney shared with us. It's one of my best memories:)

  15. My favorite story growing up was Little Red Riding Hood .Happy Holidays

  16. I still love Charlie Brown's Christmas

  17. My favorite story is The Nutcracker! I have loved it for as long as I can remember.

    celjla212 at aol dot com

  18. Wow interesting concept of when story telling first begin. Actually i believe the first story telling begin with the serpent (Lilith - LOL) telling Eve about the friut from the tree of life. Can you imagine Eve and Adam explaining this to their children and on down. Or maybe the fallen angels when they came to earth and mated with the female humans. Can you just imagine.

    My favorite story for the christmas season to tell my grandchildren will always be of Jesus Birth.

    Now when the holiday season ends, I love telling stories of the Three Little Pigs, Goldie Locks and the three bears, three little kitten who lost their mittens, those stories will always be my favorite. I love nursrey rymes and love putting emphases to the words and be in character while telling the story because it makes my grandkids smile and laugh.

    Merry Christmas
    Ronda Tutt

  19. In the spirit of the season I am sticking with A Christmas Carol - it has ghosties, good will, and a moral. Can't beat that. Thank you for participating in the Mistletoe Madness fun!

  20. my favorite story as a kid were grimm fairy tales.. they were slightly dark.. but i loved them none the less.

  21. My favorite story is about the day I was born. For some reason, in our location just east of Lake Michigan, the end of February almost always has a major snow storm. For most of the last 6 or 8 hours before I was born, my mom & dad had been taking turns shoveling in front of their truck trying to get the 3 1/2 blocks down the street they lived on, with the road drifting back shut behind them. Shortly after arriving home, mom's labor started. There was no way they could shovel their way back out with her in labor, so they called my grandfather who parked at the end of the road & walked in through the drifts to help dad get mom to his car. Mom was so tired, from shoveling all day, that she kept telling them that she just wanted to lay down in the snow & have the baby right there. It took a lot of tugging & carrying, but they got her to the hospital, where her water broke as she was taking off her boots. Her labor progressed so fast, that the doctor didn't get there until after I made my grand entrance.

    drainbamaged.gyzmo at

  22. My favorite christmas story is 'Twas the Night Before Christmas. Thank you for the chance to win =)

  23. I dont know that its possible to have one favorite story. At least not for me. But what has always fascinated me were the classic myths.

    bacchus76 at myself dot com

  24. Ah the art of the storyteller. For me its David Gemmell's Legend. Now this may seem strange but it was the first adult fantasy novel I read. It was a gift from my Dad when I was ill and its had a special place in my heart ever since. I love the fact its about love, honour and heroism and that despite the odds, force must be met with force at times.

    Christmas wise I think its The Night Before Christmas, I love the poetry and the images and when you have it read by someone special, its a moment that you'll treasure for life.

  25. Stories flame creativity in my children. They love making things up -sometimes silly, or outrageous and sweet too. It amazing me on how their young minds grasp the structure too. My favorite stories are the ones my Dad recalls - of his growing up and his ancestors. Memories can make a powerful story and can generate story least for me. Great blog post Ruth!

  26. My favorite story is Mr. Shipshape's Shoe Shop, a book we read as kids and one I look for to read every year when I am home!

    books4me67 at ymail dot com

  27. The Christmas Story from the Bible is so appropriate this time of year, and a good tale.

    Ho, Ho, Ho...

  28. Probably will be A Christmas Carol.
    Happy Holidays! Thanks!


  29. My favorite story is Beauty and the Beast.


  30. My favorite story was always either The Little Mermaid or Aladdin


  31. I loved A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens (I still have my copy). I even made my sister read it who ended up hating it-She must have bad taste.
    helldog3 at

  32. My favorite story is hard to choose. I love to hear the stories my family tells of relatives past and present.

  33. A Christmas Carol is my ultimate favorite story. I just never tire of it!
    Thank you so much for your generous giveaway, and for participating in this hop! I love finding new to me authors =)
    Happy Holidays!

    Gena Robertson

  34. My favorite story as an adult is Creek Mary's Blood by Dee Brown. My paternal grandmother was about 3/4 Cherokee Indian so I was always fascinated by Native American culture, particularly the Cherokee. She died before I was born, so I never got a chance to find out more from here. I also like Bury My Heart At Wounded Knee.

    seriousreader at live dot com

  35. My favorite stories are those that my nieces & nephews made up when they were younger. I have many that I will cherish.
    June M.
    manning_j2004 at yahoo dot com

  36. My favorite stories are the different variations of The Little Mermaid... happy endings and not so happy endings, the things we do for love and the fact is it doesn't always work out but it's always been a story I've loved.

  37. My favorite story is The Hero and the Crown, by Robin McKinley. I loved it as a child, and still do.

    Impudent Hatchlings -

  38. My favorite story has always been Cinderella. I just love it and always have since I was very young. Isn't it funny how some things stay with us after so many years? Thank you for taking part in the hop and for the wonderful giveaway. Merry Christmas :)


  39. My favorite story is beauty and the beast and its many many forms and versions

    meghan_L_P at hotmail dot com

  40. I love the princess stories. Especially Cinderella and Sleeping Beauty.

  41. my favorite is old fairy tales. i love beauty and the beast and mulan. two of my all time favorites. ;) thanks for the great giveaway! happy holidays!

  42. My favorite story is Alice's Adventures in Wonderland! Such a fascinating story!

    Thanks for the giveaway!


  43. My favorite story has always been Beauty and the Beast. I fell in love with reading years ago after reading this story, so it remains my favorite 30 years later.

    Merry Christmas!!!

  44. My favorite story when I was growing up was Aladdin.


  45. I remember Little Red Riding Hood when I was little as one of my favorites! Now still my favorite is beauty and the beast love that one!
    Happy Holidays to you!
    Latisha D

  46. Good Night Moon, read it to my two kids and we just loved that book.

    Happy Holidays to all!!

    thewildtwo {@} sbcglobal {DOT} net