12.27.15: The Holiday Cocoon Show

Dec 25, 2015

Last winter researchers set off for Norway’s northern reaches where the sun barely rises above the horizon to find out how residents cope with the cold and darkness and discovered something remarkable. Today, we reveal the Norwegian secret to enjoying a harsh winter.

Then, how to build a new tradition. Let's face it, not everyone has a family holiday tradition, and for some, new life circumstances can render beloved customs obsolete. The Word of Mouth team has some ideas to spice up your holiday routine.

Plus, the family that owns the craft chain Hobby Lobby is opening a Museum of the Bible just blocks from the National Mall. It will be the first time their vast collection of biblical artifacts will be open to the public, but where exactly did these artifacts come from? On today’s show, a look into the provenance of the bible museum.

Listen to the full show. 

Surviving a Norwegian Winter

New Englanders tend to break down into two camps: the outdoor enthusiasts who long for winter’s white slopes and those of us who grumble about the dark and cold, turn up the heat, read, and watch Netflix. If you’re among the later, it might be time to take a page out of Norway’s playbook.

According to new research, Norwegians don’t seem to suffer from the same sorts of seasonal mood swings we do here in America’s Northeast. Laura Vanderkam is an author and contributor to Fast Company where she recently shared some Norwegian secrets to embracing the winter

Holiday Traditions Roundtable

The holidays are a time for good tidings, cheer, and tradition…presumably. Because, let's face it, not everyone has a family holiday tradition, and for some, new life circumstances - such as the birth of a child or the death of a loved one - can render those old beloved customs obsolete. If you're among those looking for something new to do this year, look no further...the Word of Mouth crew is here to offer up their tried and true holiday traditions

The Year NORAD Found Santa Claus

Ever wonder how the Christmas tradition of having NORAD track Santa Claus began? The children of Air Force Colonel Harry Shoup share the story of how their very serious dad inadvertently started tracking Santa's sleigh back in 1955, with StoryCorps

You can listen to this story again at StoryCorps.org

"Why I Hate Star Wars"

With all the box office records, product tie ins, and unavoidable enthusiasm for the franchise, Star Wars haters are up against the ropes this week. Brett Berk is one of them. Brett is author of The Gay Uncle’s Guide to Parenting, and he recently wrote an essay for The Drive called “Why I Hate Star Wars. We caught up with him to see what the backlash has been like and why he hates Star Wars

The Mental Effects of Space Travel

Sydney Brownstone is a staff writer at Fast Company’s Co-Exist, where she wrote about the often-ignored mental side of space travel. You can read her article here: "The Break-Off Effect."

Hobby Lobby's Bible Museum

In 2014, the Oklahoma based craft chain, Hobby Lobby won a Supreme Court case which allowed closely held corporations to refuse to cover contraception under employee health care benefits if it violated the owner of the company’s religious beliefs. The family which owns Hobby Lobby is now hard at work on another complex Washington project: opening a Museum of the Bible just blocks from the National Mall.

The museum will make the Green family’s vast and relatively new collection of biblical artifacts open to the public for the first time which also opens up questions about their origins.  Joel Baden and Candida Moss wrote about the museum-in-progress for The Atlantic. "Can Hobby Lobby Buy the Bible?"