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A fairytale Christmas

Will strolled under an arch of fir branches and colorful Christmas balls as the narrow streets of the Christmas market in Odense, a beautiful Danish city, meandered before him. In the dark of the afternoon the Christmas market houses shone with a warm, enveloping light as the snow covered everything, the roofs, the trees and the streets. Will stopped in front of a very special little house, which sold Christmas balls, garlands and other souvenirs. One object in particular caught Will's attention, it was a glass ball with snow, the kind that you enjoy turning over and then admire the snowflakes dancing in the sphere. At the center of the glass ball was a majestic fir. The glass sphere had an inscription at the base, in honor of Hans Christian Andersen. But what did it ever mean? Seeing Will's questioning gaze, a man who was admiring the other exposed objects approached him and explained that that glass ball told of Andersen's Christmas story, a story that he thought many young people should read to learn something. A long time ago, in the forest, there lived a fir that spent all the time complaining. It wanted to be bigger than it was, so that the little birds could build their nest on its branches, he wanted to be used to build large ships with which to sail the seas or to make furniture in luxurious homes. One day, finally, the fir was cut and sold to a family as a Christmas tree. The fir was decorated and Christmas was celebrated around it. After the party, however, the fir was relegated in a corner of the house, where he lost its colors and its scent and finally realized how lucky he was when he lived in the forest, he had everything, air, life and health and did not understood that that was happiness until he had lost everything. Spring came, the children took the fir, removed the last decorations and used it to light a nice fireplace to warm up on one of the last rainy days before the summer. Of course, the moral of the story was clear, but it certainly could not refer to Will, ah, certainly not, our protagonist repeated to himself as he walked quickly away from the house, from the glass sphere and from the fir that had never enjoyed the little things. The next step of the journey, he was sure, would help him more in his pursuit of happiness.

Fir needle tonic

From Andersen's fable here is a cosmetic that smells of woods and fir. Pour a cup of water and a couple of sprigs of spruce into a saucepan. Bring everything to a boil, then remove from the heat and let it rest for fifteen minutes. Filter the tonic, add 2 tablespoons of witch hazel water and the tonic is ready! You can spray it on your face in the evening before going to sleep. Fir extracts have shown an anti-aging, anti-inflammatory and soothing action, useful against redness and erythema thanks to the presence of polyphenols with antioxidant action (Zorko et al, Pharmazie, 2018).
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