Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Advent and Premature Decorating

I don't know what it's been over the past few weeks.  The seasons changing (which they are, complete with colorful leaves and crisp fall weather)?  Sickness working it's way through the house (and now on it's way out the door, knock on wood)?  Nearing the advanced stages of this pregnancy, our own little advent in this family?  Or maybe so many sad stories of violence both near and far?  I find myself ever so ready this year for the Advent season, for joyfully waiting for and celebrating the great miracle of God incarnate among us.

The other day I was sleepy and sick, resting in bed while Ben and the kiddos embarked upon weekend adventures.  I only have to be away from the fun for about thirty minutes before I start missing everyone, and when I crept downstairs, a full blown dance party was underway in our living room, with everyone from Zosia down to Clara and Dorothy shaking their stuff to Ben's eclectic dance mix.  Those little ones have some moves, you guys!  "Mommy loves this one," Ben said as he changed the track, and when he started the song I could only manage a smile for a second before I burst into tears, because isn't it all so beautiful and unlikely?  And Ben held me while I cried for the entirety of that song, because there are very few things so good and true that they only get better and better over the course of a lifetime, and this is one of them.  It is a good thing to cry about something like that.

On the home front, all of this has meant that I have embarked upon some utterly premature holiday decorating, which I blame in part on my nesting instincts and in part on my eagerness for it to just be Advent already.  We even took our family Christmas photo this morning, which I will obviously hide from you until it is appropriate to share, but I got a kick out of some of those out takes.  Twins in little gnome hats is among the cuter things I've seen this week.

We love Advent around here, and over the years I have realized that it takes surprisingly little work to create the space for a meaning filled advent.  Simple rituals: the lighting of an advent wreath, the singing of an Advent song or two (O Come O Come Emmanuel is our daily tune), and the reading of a few sacred words together alone can create the feeling of a sacred time that is somehow set apart (It's all about a wreath and a nativity, you guys!).  This year I'm hoping to join the church in the reading of one of the hours, maybe Night Prayer, just because that is the time of day when things simmer down around here.  The kids have already been asking about our advent celebrations, and it makes my heart so glad that they think of joyfully waiting for the arrival of Jesus rather than all the other stuff that can be so distracting this time of year.

Ben is out picking up some pretty awesome family from the airport as I write, and we brought home our Thanksgiving groceries this morning.  Thanksgiving is one of the best holidays around, if you ask me.  There is so much to be thankful for.  So much, you guys.  And then we just have a big party with all the best food to celebrate it, and a few days later we begin the Advent season.  I hope you find yourself in the midst of the spirit of gratitude these coming days.  Oh, and because I know I myself will be searching the blog for this turkey recipe within the next 24 hours, if you're still about to dash out to the store and haven't yet found a turkey recipe you love, try my mom's!  It's totally the best, even though it will never be as good as when she herself makes it.  Happy cooking!


Margo said...

I love "the Friendly Beasts" and I hardly hear it anymore! Love your soft heart - must listen to the whole thing but a baby is crying at my house, so later :)

Kerry said...

This is so beautiful! I'm feeling especially ready for advent this year too...looking forward to old and new traditions. Love those outtakes!!!

Adele said...

Margo, there's nothing quite like having a real baby in the house to get into the Advent spirit. :-)

Adele said...

Kerry, wishing you a blessed Advent, friend!