Monday, December 1, 2008

Decking the Halls and Shopping the Malls

That pretty much sums up how we spent Thanksgiving weekend!!!

Tiffany, Ashlyn and Hannah did the get-up-in-the-middle-of-the-night-and-hit-the-mall shopping thing on Friday. But not me!!! I had to get my "beauty sleep!"

On Saturday, we got out the tree and decorations, and with Tiffany in charge, managed to transform it into a work of art! If it weren't for Tiffany, it seriously might never happen! She is our expert holiday coordinator and in charge of Christmas cheer!!

When I was growing up, my parents used to give my sister and me a new Christmas ornament every year, so that when we got married we would have our own collection of ornaments to take with us and use on our own trees. As a result, I have a nice collection of unique ornaments, some of which are pretty old! I have tried to continue that tradition with my own children; although, there were several years when I just couldn't seem to pull it off. Anyway, we have a tradition that each child gets out their own box of ornaments and puts them on the tree.

While we decorated the tree, we listened to Bing Crosby's White Christmas, munched on pieces of peppermint bark that Hannah had made, and drank hot chocolate! It just doesn't get much better than that!! :)

Matthew got out the Advent Calendar and tried to get in his mind how many days were left until Christmas.

I kept explaining it to him, but for some reason he had difficulty wrapping his mind around it until he got out his snap cubes and built the number -- two tens and five ones!! I just thought that was so cute!! We have all these fancy decorations that count down the days, and he just wants to remove one snap cube each day until Christmas!!! That is a great illustration of how a 6 year old boy's mind works!!! :)

Sunday night, we started our observance of Advent. We set up the Advent Wreath and lit the first purple candle. We will light the appropriate candle each night between now and Christmas, while reading one chapter from our exciting Advent storybook. We just LOVE the Jotham's Journey Advent story series! We have read all three books and are cycling through them again. This year we are reading Bartholomew's Passage. These books give you a totally different perspective of the Nativity Story, making it all come to life in a dramatic way! They are full of action and adventure, with every chapter leaving you in suspense! The children always beg for us to keep reading, while the adults have been seen peeking ahead! :)

When his work schedule permits, Alan reads the Advent story and devotional. When he isn't available, I read it. Now that our schedule is so much busier, with basketball games and other events, there will be nights we aren't able to find time for our Advent reading. When that happens, we just double up another night, but our fun observance of Advent has become a foundational part of our family's celebration of Christmas.

Here is a picture of our Christmas tree, all decorated for the Christmas season, and then a picture of our fireplace and mantle with our twelve little stockings, all ready for me to fill with fun little odds and ends.

1 comment:

Mama Ant said...

That is pretty. We got our tree up as well.

Oh, I answered the tag yesterday.

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