Sunday, December 02, 2007

First Sunday of Advent

Our preparations began a few days ago with digging out our purple altar cloth and advent wreath, and making candles. The candle making was new this year. I found a kit on ebay with pink and purple beeswax sheets.

Here's Maria using a blowdrier to warm the wax sheets...this makes them easier to roll....

...and also softens the wax enough to let her taper the ends.

This is by far our favorite part of Advent...our Jesse Tree ornaments. Here's the garland where the ornaments hang during Advent, each numbered one through twenty-five. So, technically, you use it during the first 25 days of December.

This is what the ornaments look like on the other side...for those who are unfamiliar, Jesse tree ornaments trace the lineage of Christ all the way back to Adam. So, each ornament has an image representing different bible stories and ancestors of can see, if you click on the picture, the dove with the olive branch for the story of Noah, tablet of 10 commandments for Moses, the stories of Abraham, Isaac, Samuel, etc., are all there, all the way up until the birth of Jesus there at the end. You can't tell from here, but those are little party favor bags like you find in the wedding section of craft stores. Inside the bags are three pieces of candy, one for each child. The last few days also have the O Antiphons in them with little "gold coins" (yellow cardstock circles) for each antiphon.

Each day during Advent, a child gets to take down a bag, pass around the candy, and hang the bag on the "tree" (dead branch from the back yard). We read the bible story related to the ornament while the kids have their small treat...a little taste of Christmas. By Christmas day, the garland is empty and the tree is full and pretty.

Then, per this Advent unit study, we read Merry Christmas Strega Nona. It's set in Italy, so Maria and I made spaghetti and meatballs, caesar salad, and garlic bread for dinner.


Cheryl said...

I really like your Advent wreath.

mel said...

Thanks! It's very can't actually *buy* an Advent wreath around here, and the first year I used one, being me, I waited too late to order one. I found a wreath frame at a craft store and just bought some garland and ribbon to wrap around it. :)

Kelly said...

I read this entry a few days ago and got called away before I could comment - but you are doing a GREAT job with Advent! I wish I was doing half of what you are!

mel said...

Thanks, we are having a good time with it this year...this year we've done more than we have in the past, but we are ditching most of our school work to make it happen, haha!

Lacy @ Catholic Icing said...

I love that you made your own advent candles! What a cute idea. I'm always on the hunt for good ideas! :-)