Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Celebrating Advent - Week Four

My hope for this short series of posts is to help/encourage/prove that celebrating Advent is doable even with little ones. One might argue it necessary to teach kids about seasons and times of preparation and times of celebration

Veni clavis Davidica!
Regna reclude coelica,
Fac iter Tutum superum,
Et claude vias Inferum.
Gaude, gaude, Emmanuel
nascetur per te, Israel. 

Okay now I'm totally back on track. Here's what's been going on:

Advent Week 1
Advent Week 2 
Advent Week 3 

Here's our weekly preparation schedule:

1. Daily - The Jesse Tree
2. Daily - O Come Emmanuel
3. Weekly - Act of Service/Charity - you get the point

1. The Jesse Tree - PEOPLE! DO A JESSE TREE. Even if you aren't Catholic and you want to do daily reading from the OT to get from Adam and Eve to Christ and you want to make it visually interesting for kids GET A JESSE TREE. Hands down best *new* Advent tradition we added this year.

This week's readings have included some pretty long passages which have been broken up over morning/lunch/dinner if necessary. Like ummm... THE ENITRE BOOK OF JONAH. Okay it was not that long but how about 4 chapters of Tobit? Anyhow, I peaked ahead we are getting into some of the prophecies of in Isaiah and short(er) little snippets.

2. Singing O Come Emmanuel - If I could just remember the second and third versus in Latin we'd be golden without the stinking sheet of paper with the words on it that I have not seen for at least 4 days... but #momfail. One day in future years hopefully the girls will put together the 'Key of David' and 'Rod of Jesse' and other part of the song dwith what we are reading about in the Jesse Tree. That's one of the reasons I love singing it (aside from the Latin is just really pretty) is the song has TONS of theology in it.

3. Act of Giving Back/Charity…

{while stopping for gas on the way to our destination}
R - We going back home?
Me - No we are going to the graveyard
R - Ohhhh mer-sea. That sounds alittle fun

The girls did well the during the Panikhida at both cemeteries...

Still brings a tear to my eye going here...

We even got a "Eeeeee-ternal memory" chime in from R when we sang 'Blessed repose and eternal memory'. It was cute. It lightened the mood. 

This was a repeat activity from last year and I think it is an important one. It is definitely not as fun as filling shoeboxes by any means. E is still trying to wrap her finger around the concept of death since we went to a funeral last year. Then we've recently been talking about a friend whose baby is in heaven and how he is there but his mama and papa and sister are alive (on earth). Oh the mind of a child. 

Any-who, on tap for this week is trying not to get overly excited about our tree

Seriously I have wanted one of these little babies forever and now we have a perfect reason to have one since come December 24 the bare bones, not overly festive Jesse Tree (and ornaments) will have to be replaced by a decked out Christmas tree (and corresponding ornaments). I'm sure these won't disappoint either. For now, our ridiculous tree is getting used to life outside the box in the corner of Lee's office. Now I just have to figure out how to run an extension cord from the kitchen table to a plug without getting tripped over a million times by three little girls!

Also, I'm up for ideas on a charitable act or service or something for this week. I'm thinking I might have the girls exchange names among them and get their presents but that is not really what I'm going for plus I might rig it so:

E has M
R has E
M has R

since have pretty good idea about 'suggestions' that will be put forth.

I don't know. I really don't want to drop the ball on the charity the last two weeks of Advent because we were slackers last year too. I'd love an activity that does not involve spending a bunch of money because we did that the first two weeks. Going to a soup kitchen or something like that would be ideal but bringing small kids is generally not an option unless one exists that is outside of the ordinary.

Baking cookies for firefighters and police officers? There was an episode of the Duggars when that did that so that might work...

IDEAS people... I need them please.

O come, Thou Key of David, come
And open wide our heav'nly home ;
Make safe the way that leads on high,
And close the path to misery.
Rejoice ! Rejoice ! Emmanuel
Shall come to thee, O Israel.


  1. My advent charity goal (I have yet to succeed!) is to donate clothes/books/toys and bake cookies for friends that are priests and seminarians. Would either of those work?!

    1. Well we gave St. Nicholas a bunch of toys already. Books usually only leave the house in the trash can because they have been chewed or torn up and clothes... I could do that. But I can only bear to go through the girls clothes once or twice a year because the closest of clothes is my (first world) stressor : )

      I probably need to meet some seminarians - one of the drawbacks of being 10 hours away from the cathedral is that we aren't around any... Ehem. We might bake next week. I cannot decide. I really want to and don't want to at the same time. We shall see!

    2. Oh yes I forgot you give St Nick donations! The seminarians/priests I bake for are just friends of ours, not necessarily ones in our diocese. You could maybe bake for elderly you may know? Or make a freezer meal for a new mom or soon to be new mom? Or someone else who may be havig a busy season? Like the pastor at your church (is that what you call him?) haha?

      I feel you about the books. The only ones that leave us NOT in the trash are just gifts that are so so so dumb. Haha

    3. Oh! Maybe ask the girls if there is anyone they want to bake for? Maybe having them decide will help them understand the idea of selfless gifting? Just a thought!

  2. We bake cookies for the neighbors, get something for a kid off the Walmart angel tree while we shop, and we don't do it but I just thought of writing a letter to a soldier or someone in a nursing home. Might just have to do that myself in the next week or so. :)