One, if by land, two, if by sea / And I on the opposite shore will be / Ready to ride
Feeling a little like Paul Revere these days. I keep warning people–Advent is early this year! Get your candles! Make your plans! It’s coming. A very late Thanksgiving and a very early Advent this year means that Advent begins in November, before St. Andrew’s Day. Who even really knew that was possible?
If Advent is going to be a time of preparation, now is the time to give a little thought to how you will keep the season. Here are a few of our practices to get you thinking in the right direction.
Reading the stories of our redemptive history and coloring together is the anchor to our days during Advent. We use the Children’s Story Bible by Catherine Vos (it’s a three generation book in our family!) and let the stories speak for themselves.
Winter is the time for stories, and nothing is better than a basket full of storybooks and the morning free to read. We unwrap a book every day (from our stash and the library). Presents–and presence–from the beginning.
Keeping these feasts at the beginning of Advent really sets the tone for what is coming. Here are our St Andrew, St Nicolas, Virgin of Guadalupe, and St Lucy Day celebrations from past years. For our simple celebrations, I incorporate three elements–food, art, and story.
And all the rest…
Advent wreaths, cards, gifts, parties, handwork…not to mention church! Now is the time to think through these choices. So that the comfort and joy doesn’t become obligation and stress.