Tag Archives: advent

Happy Advent

Christmascard2013_4 Ah Christmas time, always my favorite time of year. My ex-officemate Claire was at a work lunch many moons ago, when she mentioned my name. “Hmmmmm” said a guy I have never met “Is that the girl who is crazy about Christmas?”. Yup. That’s me.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA Basically I love the baking, the decorating, the crafts, the lights, the tackiness. The crazy excitement, the movies. I love it all. I wouldn’t have it any other way. But at Ecclesia (our beloved church home) 2 weeks ago, I saw this video which moved me deeply:

(It actually moved me to tears, but I seem to have a broken my tear switch when pregnant and never quite mended it).

Look, I am not going to stop sending cards, stop getting presents, or do anything drastic. Yet. But this video was the first time that I really sat and thought about what Christmas should be to a Christian. The celebration of the birth of Christ. To me, that used to be about going to church throughout advent, going to Midnight Mass, and remembering why we have this festival (unless you are Wiccan or Pagan… totally different reasons then).

Loved coordinating this nativity in 2008

Slowly (and I can be slow) I am realising that it is about more than that. It is about celebrating the birth of Christ. Which surely can mean nothing less than enacting what he stood for: love, charity, selfless giving, equality. I am not ready, nor willing, to make drastic changes to my celebrations (which I suspect I should do), but I have promised that this advent there will be some small changes:

No debt. No debt at all. We celebrate Christmas within our means. No excuses.

Charity work. Active serving of others. Active giving to others. Enough serving of and giving to others that it is inconvenient to me. That it is at my expense.

Christmas celebrations must not get in the way of more important things: serving others, friends, family. That means: no stress! I will build Christmas traditions that enhance my family. Other Christmas traditions: shopping / baking / whatever, happen with my son, or with my friends. Most of them should only happen if they are actively enhancing my family and friendships and bringing love, positivity and peace to them. At the very least, none of them may occur at the expense of them (so no: “Wes, can you take Sam, I have to do such-and-such”).

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I am looking forward to this season! I think this is what Christmas has to be about. Unless you are not a Christian: when you get to enjoy it without these thoughts, just for the party. Awesome 🙂

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Happy Advent! The First Christmas Craft of the Season

Happy Advent

Happy Advent

Happy Advent 🙂 OK, this is more than a little belated, but now I have wrangled young Samuel into a routine (<—- I owe you a post on this) that involves proper naps during the day, and thus also happy awake times, I actually have some time to blog (at least until grant writing makes me crazy again). I still have to put up the Thanksgiving pictures. Oh well.

This year I have actually got my butt into gear and done Christmas properly. I am not sure why this year I managed it… perhaps ‘missing’ three Christmases by letting advent go un-noticed finally tipped me. Or maybe it is because now I have a house I love and am proud of. Or because there is so much going on juggling work and a newborn and a marriage that I have started to become a ‘planner’. Who knows? Anyone else find this? Hyper organized when a little one came along?

Anyway, We got a tree nice and early which Sam got to help decorate:

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Every year, Wes I buy each other an ornament.

Wes to me 2011:

'Our first Christmas 2011' ornament

‘Our first Christmas 2011’ ornament

Me to Wes 2011:

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And me to Wes 2012:

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And this year I got brave and made a bauble:

Handmade by Lekki

Handmade by Lekki

See? My crafting isn’t always just gluing bits of pre-cut wood together 😉

Then all the Christmas decorations came out:

Advent calendar

Advent calendar

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Including the all-time favourite (from many moons ago)

Old friends

Old friends

 

I got organised and actually wrote Christmas cards (We tried to make a family Christmas card… but failed [attempts at the top and bottom of this card], so people got a photo of Sam in the hospital instead [better luck next year…])

But I did a Christmas wreath using:

  • A Styrofoam wreath form
  • Felt
  • Small cardboard boxes
  • Spray paint
  • Hot glue
  • ribbon
  • baubles
  • Foam
  • Scissors

Step 1: Cover the wreath form in felt squares

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Step 2: Spray paint your cardboard boxes:

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Step 3: Decorate your painted boxes:

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Step 4: Glue decorated boxes to the felt, and fill in the gaps using baubles and stars cut free-hand from the foam

Homemade Christmas wreath

Voila. A cute decoration, and easy for kids to do too.

Happy Advent y’all:

Sam's Thanksgiving / Christmas outfit.

Sam’s Thanksgiving / Christmas outfit.