We're expecting our own nativity around here any day, and it's pretty much all I can think about.
Today was spent cleaning my house: folding laundry, vacuuming, mopping the floor, cleaning the bathrooms, watering plants.
I love a clean house.
Mr. C. was out in the yard chainsawing fallen limbs from a snow storm a few weeks back. The boys were happily helping him all afternoon: hauling wood, playing in a makeshift clubhouse he'd built them this morning in the yard while they were yet sleeping. I am reminded quite often that he's a great dad.
Little Miss mostly followed me around and chatted throughout the afternoon. Then we went out to walk for a half hour after I'd put dinner in the oven. Isaiah went with us. We walked our neighborhood streets and looked at the Christmas lights and chatted with each other. It was peaceful and calm and I couldn't help but say aloud,
"I love this time of year."
Last year, at the beginning of December, we started this tradition.
This year we're doing it again, but also adding something else into the mix.
Which necessitated my project of the last few weeks.
Made the pockets.
Covered each one with different Christmas papers.
Cut out squares for numbering 1 thru 24.
Glued on the numbers and hole punched each pocket.
Strung them together with raffia.
Strung it up underneath the holiday mantle.
Selected advent readings for each day -- beginning with Christ being chosen as the Savior in the preexistence.
Tucked the readings inside.
Viola: the finished product!
The truly sweet part is what happens as we do this.
The natural questions that result, the testimonies that are borne, the spirit that is so strong in a room aglow with soft lights and warm, listening hearts.
It truly is magical.
After our scriptural reading, we read the first chapter from Dickens' book.
And you know what?
I remembered why this quiet evening ritual was my favorite part of December last year.
So happy to be doing it again.