Monday, December 8, 2008

Christmas is coming...

For the first time this year we are finally doing something we've wanted to do every year since Sofi was born. That is, celebrate Advent. We finally did it. We made a wreath, we researched the whole concept and all the various traditions surrounding it-- even ones in *gasp* different denominations! And it's really changed the whole Christmas experience for me in an amazing way.

Let me enlighten you. I am one of those people who goes hog-wild on a project, whips myself into a frenzy and then collapses from total exhaustion at the end. Moderation is just not one of my strong points. That is what I have J for. He has moderation. I have inspiration. So. Every Christmas, as soon as Thanksgiving is respectably behind us (like by one or two days), I start dragging out the Christmas Stuff. The lights, the wreaths, the greenery, the music, the movies, the food, planning parties, buying presents... And I go on this Christmas binge for, like, two weeks. So that puts us just barely into Dec, right? And then I totally burn out. I'm sick of it all! And it's still three more weeks till the actual day! Stupid, right?

But this year, because our whole celebration of Christmas is centered around Advent, all of a sudden, I find myself paced. Slowed down. Regulated. Wow! A whole new world has opened up to me. Now I have moderation forced upon me! And it is sweet, sweet. I find myself anticipating each new week as we light the next candle, read the next Scripture passage, contemplate a new aspect of Christ's gift to Man. Hope, Peace, Joy, Love. Each week we are adding something to our decorations. The tree is up, the lights are up, but no ornaments, nothing outside the house, no food, some presents are purchased, but none are wrapped. That will come, in time. I can wait. I'm enjoying the journey this year.

We. as a family, are walking slowly toward Bethlehem to Worship Christ, the Newborn King.

6 comments:

Jenny said...

This is completely unconnected, but have you seen this?
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2Fe11OlMiz8

Matt, Lauren & Noah Valentine said...

I'm inspired...and I'm going to copy you next year. Not sure if I'll even get decorations up this year...

Denise said...

This sounds like a much more paced, reflective, and overall enjoyable family experience toward approaching Christmas. I think it's great that it tied into your starting Advent.

We just got home from a fun Chicago trip, but it means we dont' have any Christmas decorations up, and the fall ones are still around. But I fully intend on doing this all with Jonathan leisurely. So what if our tree might be late getting up? We will enjoy the EXPREIENCE more than the end result. So today I'm burning my mulled cider candles because they're still lovely, and Christmas will come in its own time. Praise the Lord for every season!

Herb of Grace said...

You should definitely try it out, Lauren. Especially since Noah will be old enough next year to participate more :) First Christmases for babies are decidedly overated, imho.

Denise, just wait till you have your little ones participating, too! It's so much fun to start all these fun traditions for your OWN family, kwim?

Melanie J said...

I don't think I could tone down Christmas if I tried. I'm so in love with the season. But I really like the idea of layering even more Christ-centered approaches to commemorating the holiday.

Rebecca said...

That's great!

Interesting how I'm getting to know you already through this blog of yours... :)