Saturday, December 18, 2010

Best Intentions

Our read aloud, prayer cards, Nolan's rosary and Advent candle (getting low).
I had the best intentions of blogging more this Advent season. Time has a way of getting the best of us. Our lives have been full and busy. Here we are a week before Christmas. I decided to give the boys a few extra days off school this year. I've never done that before but we are just shy of 90 days of school (which is half way finished) so I think we have plenty of wiggle room to take a well deserved break. To be honest, I think I'm more excited about the extra time than are the boys!
More on the mantle. The boys like to rearrange the nativity each day. Sometimes it gets pretty wild.
I wanted to share a little of what we've been doing. This year I changed our Advent tradition just a little bit. For many years now, I've had Advent boxes for the boys to open. Each box contains one piece of their nativity. There's plenty of days that also include a little candy. We also usually read The Jesse Tree each day and for many years put up the homemade ornaments the boys created many years ago.
Here is Mary peeking in her basket at a little kitty. Can't you just imagine her really doing this 2000 years ago?
This year I made advent houses that adorn our mantle. I'm really pleased with how much better they look than the boxes did. They don't hide the contents quite as well, though. The boys don't seem to mind. This year I also bought the boys each an advent candle. This is our second year doing this and it is a BIG hit. You know how boys love fire. I changed up our reading this year a little. If the day included a saint's feast, I read the boys a story about that particular saint. If the day did not, I read a story from our St. Nicholas book. Starting on the 16th, I began reading One Wintery Night. I've had this book since the boys were toddlers but sort of forgot about it. It is a longer picture book with beautiful illustrations and tells the story of Christmas from Creation to the Cross.
More of the mantle. St. Nicholas made by Nathan so many years ago and his candle. The snowmen were gifts from my nieces and sister-in law over the years.
I feel fortunate that my boys still love a simple story read to them. They love all of these little traditions that we include in our day. I didn't grow up with the Liturgical Year and as a family we didn't really have many traditions. Perhaps that is why I love them so much now. I would love to hear about your traditions. Leave me a comment or send me a link. And have a wonderful Saturday.

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