A Diary of our Current Meanderings, Thoughts, and Adventures...


Saturday, December 27, 2008

On the Third Day of Christmas...

On the third day of Christmas...we went to Grandma Knutsen's house. Did you think I forgot about the Advent and Christmas celebration? It has been with me and the story has been building but posting has been difficult because of the many activities of the season. Talk to me if you'd like to hear the full version. For now I'd like to put up a blurb about the celebration of the third day of Christmas.

From what I've read multiple myths have developed on the symbolism of the "three french hens". One that I'm particularly fond of focuses on what I consider the three-fold substance of the Christian faith: faith, hope, and love. These invisible gifts mean more to a broken world than any number of brown paper packages tied up with string (though I must admit that these are a few of my favorite things). From these spring peace, warmth, reconciliation, and perseverance to do what is good for the world despite the wrong that seems oft so strong.

In the spirit of this celebration I wish you faith in the good news of Jesus that light and goodness are spreading in the world; I wish you hope in his second coming when he will vanquish evil forever; I wish you love toward God and each other for tomorrow and every day in the years to come.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Advent has begun...

Here is some of the thoughts I've been collecting over Thanksgiving break. Most of what follows is not my own, but I'm sure the authors are more concerned with telling the story than with credit. I'd love to hear your thoughts...

Advent is marked by a spirit of expectation, of anticipation, of preparation, of longing. There is a yearning for deliverance from the evils of the world, first expressed by Israelite slaves in Egypt as they cried out from their bitter oppression. It is the cry of those who have experienced the tyranny of injustice in a world under the curse of sin, and yet who have hope of deliverance by a God who has heard the cries of oppressed slaves and brought deliverance (Rom 8:18-25).
The theme of readings and teachings during Advent is often to prepare for the Second Coming while commemorating the First Coming of Christ at Christmas. Preparation for his Second Coming includes penitence, watching, and praying.

O, Holy Spirit, blow on the embers of my soul and reignite your baptismal love in the fireplace of my being. May I become your fire in a cold, indifferent world. Impassion my spirit; enkindle my heart.

The Church Calendar starts with Advent. This is the beginning of the new year. Here is a version of the traditional progression. Each group is waiting for the Messiah. You could take these readings and celebrate right in your own home or with some friends. Light a candle every week for each group.

- Gold candle
- Is. 9:2-7
- Come Thou Long Expected Jesus (Charles Wesley)
- I heard the Bells on Christmas Day (Henry Longfellow)
- O Come, O Come Emmanuel

- White Candle
- Luke 2:8-14 / 1 Timothy 3:16
- It Came Upon a Midnight Clear
- Hark the Herald Angles Sing
- While Shepherds Watch Their Flock By Night
- Rarely do we give much thought as to what the Nativity meant to the angels. The phrase “was seen by angels” in 1 Timothy 3:16 invites us to view the whole of the Christmas story from the perspective of the angels.

- Green Candle
- Luke 2:15-20
- Angles from the Realms of Glory
- Go Tell It on the Mountain
- Angles We Have Heard On High
- How Great Our Joy (German Carol)
- Shepherds were on the lowest rung of society. But they exemplified how the Savior of the world would treat his people.

- Blue Candle
- Mathew 2:1-12
- Angles from the Realms of Glory
- We Three Kings
- The First Noel
- As With Gladness Men of Old

- Matthew 1:18-25 / Luke 1:26-38
- What Child is This?
- Away In a Manger
- Most people know who Joseph was in the Christmas story. But most don’t know him very well. What you might not know is that Christmas cost Joseph a great deal.
- From one generation to another, Mary has been known as the mother of God. What was God doing, and why did he choose Mary to do it?

- Red Candle
- Luke 2:25-32
- Joy To the World

What have you been coming up with? Tell me some stories about what you have done or what you plan to do this year.

Decking the Halls

Well, it's that time again...time to decorate for Christmas! Can you believe how fast the season has come upon us. We are in the beginning of the Advent season...the anticipation of Christ's birth...and now, his second coming. It's a wonderful time! We are nice and busy too...friends, family, baking, Christmas-movie watching, and just a little bit of shopping.

This past weekend, we decided it would be a good time to begin decorating the house. Our dear friend Britani, who was our roommate last summer, and who will soon be a permenant roommate of ours, was here--so the timing was just right. We had lots of fun dancing and decorating.

Here are some pictures for you to see. So tell us, what are some things you like to do around the Christmas season?

Organizing Bryce's millions of ornaments.

Brit and I working on fluffing out our tree. Unfortunately, yes, our tree is fake. We go out of town to Iowa every year at Christmastime for a couple of weeks, so it would be difficult to maintain a real tree...so fak-ie it is. :)

Bryce under the tree...looking coy and flirtacious.

This is for everyone that has been wanting to see a preggo pic of me! 4 1/2 months.

Our Tree!

We are always dancing..and I love it.

What in the world should we do with this pear???

Always, always, always singing.
We found the perfect place for "the pear".

Stocking on the staircase: Bryce, Kim, Brit and Poppy!
Poppy's stocking is my favorite...it's so cute and little.