Everything that is Christmas in my home has a story…
When I was a little girl, I knew that after Thanksgiving Christmas coming, because our church would start lighting the Advent Candles. Traditionally, there are four candles in the Advent Wreath. The Catholic year is called the Liturgical Year. The two Holiest times of the year are Advent and Lent. Advent culminates with Christmas, and Lent with Easter. As the candles were lit each week at church, more and more Christmas songs were inserted into the Catholic mass, and by the fourth week of Advent, the story of Mary being approached by an angel of God and told that she was going to be the Mother of God (and despite popular opinion Catholics DO NOT worship Mary, she is just someone who is closer to God and intercedes on our behalf). Each wreath has three violet (note: not purple) candles and one pink candles. Each candle represents 1000 years, meaning that we waited 4000 years for our Savior. Violet is the liturgical color of the Advent season (the same as Lent), which represents penance. The Third Sunday of Advent is called Gaudete (Rejoice) Sunday. On this day we celebrate that our waiting for Christmas is almost over. Rose is a liturgical color that is used to signify joy, so we light the rose candle on the third Sunday of Advent. The first violet candle signifies Hope. The second violet candle signifies Preparation. The third candle is pink, and as stated earlier, signifies Joy. The final violet candle represents Love. After 17 years of being stationed in non-Catholic areas, I had a hard time finding an Advent wreath, I finally found one at Yankee Candle recently.
My mom and dad bought us a Nativity set our first year of marriage. Each year for the first five years, they added a piece. Baby Jesus doesn’t make an appearance until after Christmas Day when he comes to deliver gifts for the children.
I love Christmas lights. I always wanted to have a house featured in the newspaper because of the sheer number of lights. I think once my husband retires from the military, we will synchronize our house to music one of these days. Each year we add a new decoration. This year we added the candy canes. Ironically, our lights go up soon after Halloween, because it is one of the only Christmas gifts my son requests. Every year all he asks for for Christmas is lights up for about 1-2 months.
We got this little Siberian Husky when we went to McDonalds the first year we had Sadie, our Siberian Husky. Sadie loves our little Sibe. She will sometimes carry the ornament to her kennel, so when the husky goes missing, Sadie is always nearby.
This ornament my mom got when I was born. The little boy is my brother, John. The little girl is of course me.
We got this one in the German pavilion in EPCOT. This a popular German tradition. If you find the pickle (which usually it’s a real pickle NOT a glass one), you get to be the first person to open a gift. This pickle will be hidden come Christmas Day ;).
We got this ornament the first year with marriage from my brother-in-law in 1997.
In 2000, we got to go to Disney World for the turn of century. This ornament brings back the memories of 3 miles of fireworks, and singing “Let There Be Peace On Earth” after watching the Candlelight Processional and Illuminations.
My friend made this ornament for me. She does artwork with glass (The Big Orange House), and this was made from broken glass of wine bottles I provided for her to complete her artwork ;).
May the season fill you with Hope, Preparation, Joy, and Love.