Faith, Family, Friends, Fellowship, Food, and Fun

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Advent Traditions

Advent, which comes from the Latin word for "arrival" or "coming," is a period of preparation for the birth of our Lord. Advent begins four Sundays before Christmas and is the start of the Christmas season, which lasts through the Baptism of Our Lord. The first Sunday of Advent also marks the beginning of the liturgical year, the Church's "New Year's Day," at which time we change the cycle of readings we are using at Mass.

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As we are preparing our homes and hearts for the beginning of Advent, I was wondering what your family does to celebrate Advent...what arts and crafts ideas you have...what stories you tell...what songs you teach your kids....what websites you love...anything Advent related really.

Please share your family traditions here! Just click on "comments". I look forward to your inspiration.

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Look for the picture of the advent wreath.


Texas Aggie in Florida said...

I wish I had something insightful to share, but we're pretty boring and I HATE Christmas. Bah Humbug!

However, this year in keeping with our Texas theme (cause you know our tree is all Texas ornaments) we decided to make breakfast tacos our traditional Christmas morning breakfast each year and fajitas our Christmas dinner. With shrimp. Cause you know, Cary's from the gulf coast, gotta get the seafood in!

We really don't do much to prepare for the season, although I've been thinking of getting Lisa Welchel's advent book. It sounds good.

Bah Humbug!

Stephanie said...

Breakfast tacos sound like a neat tradition. I saw on someone's blog where she makes a big batch, rolls them in foil and freezes them for her family's breakfast on the go.

Let me know about Lisa's book. I'll have to look for it the next time we're at the Christian store-we were just there last night.

Laura Brittain said...

At our church, the ladies do Advent by Candlelight (a time of fellowship, dessert, a speaker of some kind, and Christmas and Worship music). I have a calendar that the kids love each year that counts down the days till Christmas ... it has 25 little pockets and each pocket has a little character or something from the birth of Jesus and each day they get to put one on the felt barn and manger above it (it looks like a banner thing). Last year my sister-in-law and I did a Happy Birthday Jesus party with balloons, a felt board presentation of the Christmas story ... as I would tell them part of the story, I would let one of the kids come up and put what I was talking about on the felt board. At the party, we asked the kids (parents) to bring the amount of money they would normally spend on a birthday present to donate. Then we took the donations and gave them to a needy single mom who goes to our church (she didn't know we were going to do it and was so surprised and blessed). The year before that, I made cupcakes so each child and my husband and I got one with a candle on top and at Christmas Eve dinner, we sang Happy Birthday to Jesus and each blew out our candle for him. I really struggled with whether to do the Santa thing or not, but we decided to go ahead and do it, but Santa brings each child only three gifts (then my hubby and I give the kids one gift from "us"). We tell them that Jesus got three gifts from the wise men for his birthday, so Santa brings them three gifts, too, to honor Jesus and the three gifts he received. I have a Scripture calendar, too, that I read throughout the season. Christmas Eve we read the Christmas story out of Luke, too. My husband and I want everything we do surrounding Christmas to glorify Christ Jesus and the sacrifice He was born to make for us. Our Christmas tree has little crosses that hang on it and it has wired ribbon wrapped around it that says "silent Night, Holy Night." In the front yard we have Mary, Joseph and Baby Jesus (they all light up) and then in the tree above them, we have a big wooden cross wrapped with white Christmas lights hanging above them kind of like a star but to remind us every time we come home during the Christmas season why we celebrate the birth of the Christ child. Just a few thoughts. :o)

Stephanie said...

Wow Laura, love the ideas, especially about Santa bringing 3 gifts, how clever!I also like decorating the yard with things to remind us of our Savior's birth! So many creative ideas-thanks for sharing!