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5 Things You Need To Know Today: Dec. 12

Help NH singer-song writer Judy Pancoast's 'House on Christmas Street' get a million views on YouTube by Christmas!

1. It's got 47,000 twinkling lights. Are you and your kids fans of New Hampshire singer-song writer Judy Pancoast? The Grammy-nominated musician's "House on Christmas Street" is the perfect song to get you in the mood for the holidays. Check out her video on YouTube and share it with your friends. Pancoast is trying to get a million hits on the video by Christmas! See if you can help her make it happen.

2. Do you have a favorite holiday tradition? Growing up, my family always spent Christmas Eve readying for the holiday: Baking, finishing last minute Christmas surprises, going to the Christmas Eve mass at our church and then when we came home, we'd get to unwrap a couple of early gifts. One was always brand new pajamas and the other varied but was usually some sort of decoration for my sister and I as we got older (dolls or stuffed animals when we were younger) and for as many years as I can remember, my brother received a nutcracker (he started asking for them once as a young child and has quite the collection now). Christmas is less than two weeks away and Hannukah starts on Dec. 20. Both holidays are surely packed with long-standing family traditions and we'd love to hear about some of yours. Send stories of your favorite holiday traditions to carolyn.dube@patch.com. We'll compile responses to share in the days leading up to each holiday.

3. Do What You Love. Those are the words from Patch blogger Jennifer Breen. Breen talks about her love of writing that sustained her through college as she majored in Englished and tutored other students as a writing coach. She may have gotten away from writing for some years in her adult life, but Breen has found enjoyment in writing and reading again and encourages people to tap into their interests.

4. Light up your house, enlighten Merrimack's students. Patch's "Deck the House" contest is live and we want your submissions. Upload photos or videos of you house decked out for the holidays to our Deck The House contest page for the chance at winning $500 for your December electricity bill and the grand prize of $100,000 for the Merrimack School District. Get the details at deckthehouse.patch.com/contest/merrimack.

5. Weather man says. Today's forecast is calling for sunny skies and a high around 45. Tonight, skies will remain mostly clear with temperatures dipping to around 25 degrees. It's feeling like December more and more every day.

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