Friday, December 21, 2012

CHRISTmas, advent, and everything in between.

With this post, I’m participating in the Keeping Christ in Christmas Blog Carnival, hosted by Arma Dei:Equipping Catholic FamiliesRaising (& Teaching) Little Saints, Truly Rich Mom and the Catholic Bloggers Network. We'll be sharing different ways, tips, stories and real-life experiences that will help us focus on Jesus as the Reason for the Christmas season. Please scroll down to the end of the post to see the list of carnival entries. 

It's Christmas time, the most wonderful time of the year! Well Easter is at least equal to Christmas, maybe more exciting since that is when we were finally freed from original sin, but I digress since this post is about the CHRISTMAS season. It is a season that gets more exciting every year my children get older and begin to understand better what is happening. It is also a season the lasts about 6 weeks, something I (and I think many others) often forget. So I am trying my best to celebrate the WHOLE season.

We begin in advent. I don't have everything together yet because that is pretty much the story of my life..... late. This year we did manage to get a couple things put into action. Every night at diner we light our own family advent wreath and say an extra prayer that we got from an advent packet our parish put together. It was exciting last week to see that our 3 year old made the connection between the wreath at church and ours at home! At diner on Gaudete Sunday (the pink candle) he informed us that we get to light 3 candles now since they lit 3 candles at mass. We also chose the first day of advent to put up our Christmas tree with some lights. Throughout advent we use it as our Jessie tree. Each night we read a scripture passage following the line of Jessie from Adam all the way to Jesus and add an ornament to the tree that goes along with the passage. I made my own ornaments a number of years ago, but I am hoping to redo them and put together a tutorial here for next Christmas. 

Then on Christmas we will finish decorating the tree with other ornaments so that we can enjoy it through the Christmas season till the Epiphany. Finally this year we are doing "Santa" but with the focus more on Jesus. My oldest barely understands the concept of Santa bringing gift but when he broke his favorite toy sword and really wanted another one I took the opportunity to have him ask Jesus to have Saint Nicholas bring one for Christmas. Later when we saw one in the store and he was reminded of his longing for that sword I reminded him that he had asked Jesus for one and would have to wait till Christmas to see if he would get it. Being 3 years old and that it was close to nap time he did not care for that answer and had a bit of a melt down. However, when we got home he asked me to help him say a prayer to ask for the sword again. 

So far I am happy with how we are celebrating the season, but I am even more excited for next year when we have things a little better figured out and add more traditions to remind us what Christmas is about. I would like our family to build a comfortable manger for Jesus with our good deeds throughout advent; make a birthday cake either on Christmas or the Epiphany and sing for Jesus to remind us that it is his birthday we are celebrating; and incorporate some more charitable giving. It may be a little ambition so next year I need to get things together a little sooner I guess, but with my children as small as they are what we have now is working out wonderfully.

If you liked this or even if you didn't check out these other wonderful blog posts on keeping Christ in Christmas!

Homeschool Mosaics: Keeping Christ in Christmas
Joy: Keeping Christ in Christmas: Advent Interruptions
The Breadbox Letters: Interrupted by Glory
TwentyTuesdayAfternoons: Keeping Christ in Christmas/ The Season of Giving / A Wee Bit of Beach Holiday Angst
The Learning Basket: Staying With the Nativity Story
Tercets: Keeping Christ in Christmas
Rosary Mom: Keeping Christ in Christmas
Ate Maui: Hoping and Bringing Hope
Written By the Finger of God: 12 Traditions for Keeping Christ in Christmas
Dominique's Desk: Keeping Christ in Christmas
Felix at Fifty: What Jesus Wants for Christmas
Mommy Bares All: Birthday Cake for the Birthday Boy on Christmas Day
Between Now and Later: Keeping Christ in Christmas, I am trying...
Lique's Antics: Family Antics: Christmas Reflection
Life of Fortunate Chances: Our First Ever Christmas: Keeping Christ in Christmas
The Mommy Journey: Keeping Christ in Christmas
Roller Coaster Ride: How to Remind Your Kids of Jesus Christ This Christmas
Cymplified: Christ -Centered Christmas: Cymplified!
Mountain Grace: Keeping Christ in Christmas
Touring Kitty: Grown-up Christmas List
Mommy Chinkysoup for the Soul: A Very Special Christmas
City Girl, Country Home: Finding Jesus in a Flurry
Coffee Moments with Sam: Christmas Unwrapped: 5 Presents Our Kids Truly Deserve
Raising Lifelong Learners: Keeping Christ in Christmas
The Diary of a Sower: Keeping Christ in Christmas: Celebrating the Golden Days
Arma Dei: Equipping Catholic Families: Keeping Christ in Christmas
Raising (and Teaching) Little Saints: Keeping Christ in Christmas
Truly Rich Mom: The Greatest Gift of All This Christmas
Joy-Filled Family: CHRIST in Christmas
Blueberry 010: Keeping Christ in Christmas: Jesus is the Reason for the Season
Deeper Truth Blog: Keeping Christ in Christmas Carnival
Holy Ducklings: 10 Ways to Make Advent Special for Your Little Ducklings
Green Eggs and Moms: Keeping Christ in Christmas: Green Eggs & Moms Style!


  1. I like your idea of using your tree as your Jesse tree. We'll have to do that next year. Keep building rocks, I like your title.