The Charlie Brown Advent Wreath

Tomorrow starts the Christian season of Advent.

And since I’m am forever making up for a childhood with no Advent wreaths, I was on a mission to pull mine together today.

For the first time ever, I went to our local florist and bought an oasis wreath to keep my greenery green.

And I learned this is what one does to prepare the oasis. (Good thing something in this house got a bath today.)

So later on this evening after the oasis was good and soaked, I remembered to make the darn wreath for Advent starts tomorrow.

Since this thing is like SpongeBob on steroids I decide to move this project out of doors.

Avert your eyes from the leaves.

The towel was for bring the drenched wreath back into the house. Just saying.

Things got a little heavy duty.

After I started arranging, things looked terrible.

I mean, these ladies come to Garden Club and whip out all this greenery and create magical things.

Mine just looked like a it was banished to the Land of Misfit Advent Wreaths.

This wasn’t turning out at all like I envisioned.

So I snipped from a boxwood to my left. Ran over and plucked from a magnolia at the end of the drive.

Dear Goodness.

But I toiled on.

 

What we have here is the makings of a Charlie Brown Advent Wreath.

This will never do.

Maybe what I needed was light.

So I carried the dripping SpongeBob in and started to work some more.

I toiled away.

Look what I also found at the florist this year. Very cool.

Honestly, I would have given up hours before if I didn’t have to post a picture of the finished project.

And finally I ended up with this  . . .

 

So can CHECK that off the list.

Now on to the next project.

How are your Christmas chores coming along?

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Musing on Letting Go. Advent Wreaths.

As much as Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday, Advent is my favorite part of Christmas.

Once again from the file of “We never did this as a child so my family is GOING to do this,” lighting the  candles on an Advent wreath was hit-or-miss growing up.

One year when I was six or seven in Sunday School, we made Advent wreaths.

They consisted of a six-inch square block of styrofoam, a few plastic holly springs and five birthday candles.

I LOVED IT.

Holding it betwixt my hands in church, I stared at all its little promise.

We never made them again. No styrofoam, no birthday candles, no holly. Year after year, I hoped we would make that silly little thing.

It never dawned on me that we could make our own.

Till I became an adult. We have one every year and have a devotion most every night. It’s probably the most our family sits down face-to-face — with nothing but a lighted candle and lighted Christmas tree between us — and talks.

I LOVE IT —->>> almost as much as that little block of styrofoam with teensy birthday candles.

*     *     *

This year our church held an Advent wreath making workshop.

This was wonderful…

a. Because more people in the world would now have the magic of an Advent wreath to share with their family.

b. Because I wouldn’t have to worry about making one.

but…

This caused me angst. I would have to let go of all my years of making up for no teeny wreaths with birthday candles. I vowed to stand back and let my children construct their own.

Together. (This was immediately unpopular, but I stood firm.)

First, there was Family Night Supper.

Nothing says church like a lot of food.

 

Then the wreath crafting began in earnest.

 

Miss Kathleen was helping her daughter.

 

Lots of adults helped.

That wasn’t the point. I needed to let go and let my children create something imperfect and let it become my perfect Advent wreath.

I let them handle the glue gun all by themselves.

 

They all worked away.

 

One time a child by me (not my own) really needed help. I stopped and thought…this is not my child, I am not trying to make this perfect.

So I helped her.  🙂

Kathryn Cardwell was responsible for all this Advent goodness. It's nice that organized people like her can do this for clueless-moms-working-through-Advent-wreath-issues.

 

Our wreath.

 

Tomorrow is the first Sunday in Advent.

We will light the first candle

from our perfect wreath.

Do you have Advent issues?

Issues or not…may the joy of a candle and conversation with loved ones make your holiday bright.

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Finding Advent with this Wednesday’s Inspiring Woman…Meg Ferrante.

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Musing on Peace.

“Mom…Come on.”

Eyelids closed at just the perfect I-can’t-believe-you’re-so-uncooperative-here angle.

It’s a little after eight in the morning and my son just came home from an overnight airsoft camp-out in woods.

“Did you and Dad try to call?”

No.

“I lost my phone in the woods. You’ve got to get me a phone for Christmas.”

I’m done shopping this year. Spending money stressed me out big time. We had a budget for the children. Our eldest (the phone loser) said he just wanted cash.

Now he wants a phone. 

There is never any peace.

Katie Anderson led the Woman of Faith study on Peace this Sunday.

Was wondering…

Is it possible to have peace with a unmade house?

Is peace possible when you never seem to accomplish enough on the to do list? Or the things you accomplish aren’t the ones you really should have?

Is it possible to have peace and drink three pots of coffee throughout the day?

Is is possible to have peace and check your bank balance hourly?

Is peace possible with three children, two cats and one strong-as-a-bull dog in a pear tree? I wish there was a pear tree out there to stick them.

Some scriptures Katie offered.

Peace described. Psalm 29:11

What is Peace. Gal 5:22

Three things to do to pursue Peace. Psalm 34:14

What do we need to do to have Peace. Phil 4:6

So another day closer to celebrating the birth of the Prince of Peace.

How are you doing?

And even though Jake lost his phone ~ he had a front row seat for the lunar eclipse. I was comatose.

 

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Musing on holiday burnout.

Under a week till Christmas.

The kids are home. I’m home too.

There’s nowhere else to flee.

Burned out bulbs.

I’ve probably thrown away (or stepped on) the same amount. My son felt the little snow men a nice addition to the photo. He and his sister created those yesterday. They are always crafting. That’s why every material treasure in my house is

covered in paint and dried hot glue.

This is the time of the holiday season that I begin to burn out. An early swim helped, but any stress relieving benefits have long since worn off. I once again have a stiff neck and am saddled with a most attractive case of gogglitis.

But I pledge to enjoy these last few days.To be a kind, soft-spoken, cookie-baking mother. To breath deeply and keep centered on the Spirit.

We covered peace yesterday with the Woman of Faith. Going to post thought’s on Katie Anderson’a message tomorrow.

I want to be at peace these last days before Christmas.

How are you doing?

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Musing on the Digital Nativity… and clever people.

Some one forwarded me this link saying they thought I “of all people” would appreciate this.  Made me a bit jealous because someone is so very clever to come up with this. But they probably aren’t a wife, mother, neurotic mess.

Okay…they might be..but they’re just more clever than someone who is a wife, mother, neurotic mess and loves the baby Jesus.

The story of how he came. It’s all about the baby you know. Whether 2000 years ago or today.

Take time to watch a bit this. Trust me….I don’t post  links to things that aren’t wonderful.

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Musing. How wise do you have to be to be a wiseman?

My child and I share something. 

We were once a magi in a Christmas Pageant.

In Methodist Kindergarten,  I walked out in a darkened room carrying a bitty box. I glanced over at the shadowy figures of my parents lining the Fellowship Hall. 

Later at home Mom asked, “Why on earth did we curl your hair if they just were going to throw it up in a turban?” 

Sorry Mom, that’s what the tall girl gets. Back rows of pictures, top riser in elementary chorus and wiseman status.

Sister. Anxiously awaiting performance.

A former Joseph and lamb. A lifer-shepherd (center). Don't know what Papa Jack was. But his other son has played Jesus and John. That must count for something.

My little wiseman. Looking for the star, no doubt.

A bunch of Auburn fans stopped by....

The wisemen's big moment. They are stumbling around in the audience.

When they turned the lights out...the three found their way back to the stage.

My wiseguy.....

When we got home someone had left gifts of collards, macaroni and cheese and cornbread on back steps. 

And I’m tell you. Smack me in the mouth.

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Musing on the Second Sunday in Advent ~ “Fear Not.”

There is a supernatural realm.

Sometimes its appearance is like that of bright ray of sunshine on a day full of clouds. You see it — but then clouds quickly return smothering any revelation.

We forget the sun is shining brightly above the layer of gloom.

This week the lovely and talented Karen Griffith taught the Women of Faith Class. The word that came to her was

Fear Not.

Okay. That’s two words, but I didn’t press the issue. When the Lord speaks to somebody, best to let it unfold. To spite any technicalities.

First words out of our pastor Grady Mosley’s mouth in his message early service this second Sunday of Advent….

Fear Not.

I’m not making this up.

About half way through class, it became apparent that the Fear Not message was speaking very directly to one person. One brave woman who experienced a great trauma this past week.

We all have lots to fear this days.

But we human folk always did.

It was a dark time 2000 years ago. For so many there was no money, no freedom from a tyrant’s rule but plenty of  suffering, disease and want.

“Fear not, for I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all people.” 

Good news of great joy.

Fear Not…For all people.

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Musing on the second day of Advent. Silence?… And Meg Ferrante’s cool Advent blog.

Here’s a link to great blog that Meg Ferrante is doing throughout the Advent season. Put it on your RSS feed.

 Finding Advent in the Ordinary. 

 I’ll share today’s post. Without Meg’s permision…but she’s cool. Don’t think she’ll sue me or anything. 

 Monday, November 29, 2010 

 If only a few moments a day… 

I wish upon all the gift of sacred silence.
— Fr. Tim Gallagher, St. Pius X Church, Conyers, Ga.
 
I read Fr. Gallagher’s word’s of wisdom. They made me try to find silence. Try to find peace.  

Lovely.

 Then I went to make a few cups of Dunkin Donut’s Hazelnut coffee. I splurge during the holidays.  

I couldn’t find the lid to the coffee crafe because I used the pot to pour water into the Christmas tree reservoir. All the water wouldn’t come out without removing the lid. 

No lid. No coffee. 

 I looked everywhere for the lid.  

No lid.   

I began to hyperventilate.  

My scalp started to do the creepy crawly thing it goes when I am so frustrated I am about to become unglued.  

There was no silence in my brain. Remember that commerical —  

This is your brain.

This is your brain on drugs… and the sizzling frying pan. 

 I had planned to swim. I was making coffee to take with me to the pool. As if you didn’t need anymore reason to think me unbalanced.  

 All I could fixate on was finding that infernal lid. 

 Till I thought of silence. I thought I don’t want to act like I’ve always done. I want to be free. 

 So I pulled myself out the door. 

 And silenced my brain at the pool.  

Happy Second day of Advent. 

  

 

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Musing on first night of Advent around here. Regifting.

Last night the family gathered in the red room.

That’s where we sit to talk of important things. Last night it was the first Sunday of Advent.

I was the last one to arrive.

The candle was already lighted. This was surprising since I had not heard screaming and yelling — as in a fight erupting over who would light the candle.

First off..Hubby said something biblical. We talked about it. Then I thought it would be fun to add

a question

this year.

Each night one person gets to think of “the question”. Last night’s question.

“What’s your most memorable Christmas gift ever?”

My teenager said his Playstation. This was such a surprise because for years I swore he would never get one.

The younger children both said the dog…

Husband going downstairs as a child to see a go-cart waiting.

And then me.

I can never think of my favorite gift.

What in the heck’s my problem?

This question always gets me. And funny thing is I can’t even come close to answering it. I guess might say the kitten hubby gave me  our second Christmas. Though it really was like our first Christmas. Since on our first Christmas, we’d been married seven days.

This question is bothering me almost as much as the dream I had last night. And one I had less than a week ago. I wonder if the root of the bothersome favorite gift question is the root of those bothersome dreams?

Other than that….Advent was great.

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