Friday, December 11, 2015

Anna at her concert

     Anna had her Christmas band concert last night.  She's been playing for about a year and a half, and she is doing so well.  Here is a picture showing her intense concentration.  
     I'm not sure who the girl in braids is, but Samuel informed me that he intends to marry her one day.  Of course, he says that about a lot of girls.

Summer in Winter

     It has been so unseasonably warm lately.  It's been in the sixties all week, and today it got up to seventy.  I mowed the yard in a tank top... in December!  It doesn't really feel like Christmas, but hey, I'm not complaining.  I hate the cold.  In fact, it felt so nice today, that I decided to have a little bonfire. 
     We roasted sausages and watched the flames as it got dark.  Listening to the sounds of the chickens bedding down for the night, and noting the absence of night noises, as it is after all, December, and all the insects know that. 

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Oh Christmas Tree

     We got our Christmas tree this Saturday.  We always get it the first Saturday in December, although we usually end up decorating it a few days later.  This year we had to get a new stand, after not being able to find the stand that both Dave and I swore we bought last year.  Apparently we are both losing our minds, because there was no stand to be found anywhere. 
     After we finally got the tree put up, I realized we were down to only one strand of lights, so I had to get some of those before we could finally decorate.  I told the kids to do it a little differently this year.  We only put on the ornaments we really like, and the ornaments that no one was really crazy about, we would donate. 
     We all really enjoyed doing it this way.  After it was decorated it looked so pretty that the kids all begged to be allowed to sleep under it.  I usually let them do this at least once a year.  The patterns the lights make in the dark room are so magical, and the smell of the fir tree makes you feel all homey and safe. 

     After they finally fell asleep, I snuck in and took a couple of pictures.  Luckily the flash didn't wake them up.  Anna didn't want to sleep on the floor this year, because it's too hard.  I guess she's getting older.  It looks like Ginger Cat felt the same way.

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Jesse Tree Ornaments Days 21-25

     Today is the first of December and the day we finally get to start our Jesse Tree devotionals.  I did get all the ornaments made in time. (Barely.) Yay!  I finished them today, and got our branch up.  It hasn't stopped raining since we've gotten back from thanksgiving traveling, so I gave up on it stopping long enough for me to cut a branch and take pictures, and had to take the pictures for the last five ornaments in the rain.  Our advent wreath is still bare because I haven't felt like collecting wet greenery in the rain.  I am really getting tired of all this rain.   Anyway, here are the final ornaments, and our Jesse Tree awaiting it's first ornament.

Day 21: Return to the Land

     This is suppose to be a wall, and it is just a little piece of wood with rocks glued on to it.  Easy and simple to do, but I like the way it looks.

Day 22: The Star
     This is made with wire.  The same difficult jewelers wire I used for the grapes.  This time as I was trying to wrangle with it, it whipped around and stuck into my pinkie.  It really hurt, and I will probably never make another wire ornament in my life, but... It did turn out pretty.  This is Anna's favorite one.

Day 23: Light of the World
     Next year I am going to get a real metal clip-on candle holder, but I was trying to spend very little money on the ornaments this year, so this is my makeshift replacement.  It's a wooden candle holder glued on to a clothes pin.  Not ideal, but I didn't have to buy anything for it.

Day 24: Angels Proclaiming the Coming of Jesus
     Angels are so hard to depict.  I don't like to make angels look like women, since that's not very biblical, but I still want to make them look ethereal.  That's why I love wool roving angels.  If only it held up better to touching.

Day 25: The Birth of Jesus
      The final ornament of course, is baby Jesus.  The "manger" is crocheted, and the baby is felted. 

      That's it for the ornaments, and now for the tree it's self.  Finding a place to put a tree and 25 ornaments is a real challenge in my little home, where every bit of space is already being utilized.  I had to move our toad to Anna's room, and the potted plants to the dining room, where I am hopping the will not die from lack of light until January. 
       I chose to have a bare branch for the Jesse Tree.  I thought a little fir tree right next to our big Christmas tree would look a bit silly. I hung some glass icicles on the branch to pretty it up until it gets its ornaments.  The ornaments are in the numbered bags at the base of the branch.  The nativity scene is also on the table.  Unfortunately the TV dominates the whole scene, but oh well.  There's not  a lot I can do about that.