Sunday, November 28, 2010

Preparing for Advent

     We spent yesterday getting ready for Advent, by making our wreath and making some Advent treats. 
     This year for our Advent wreath I decided to try something a little different, and hopefully easier than I've done in the past.  I got this idea for my sister- to use a styrofoam wreath as the candle holders and also to stick the greenery into.  The only green styrofoam ring I could find was made out of a very tough material, and so I thought it would be best to drill the holes into it.  First, I marked out where I wanted the candles, and then used a 3/4 inch butterfly bit to drill the holes.
     After I drilled the candle holes, I used a small bit to drill randomly placed holes all around, drilled in at an angle.  These are to stick the greenery in.  Then Anna and I collected bits and pieces of greenery from around our yard.

     I used mostly Cyprus, as that is what we have the most of, and also it seemed to lay the best.  I had to poke a few more holes here and there to fill in all the bare spots, as well as more holes for the pine cones that we used to decorate it. 

     As a finishing touch, and also to hold the branches in more, I wrapped a thin white ribbon around it, and then stuck the candles in.  The 3/4 inch hole was perfect for the standard sized taper candles that we use.   I think the ring will be able to be reused year after year. 
     Sometimes I think I like celebrating Advent even better than Christmas.   There's no hype, or unrealistic expectations, just a time to remember that Jesus came once, and will be coming again.  I also like all the symbolism of Advent.  Protestants tend to get away from using any symbolism, and I think that's too bad.  The world is full of secular images, and if you aren't doing anything to contradict that, it can be hard to teach your children to live a life that is different than what the world promotes.
     In our house we do not make believe about Santa Clause, but instead we do things like celebrating Advent to make the Christmas season special.
     This is a very informative web site for learning more about Advent, and other religious holidays.   

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