image via mca
It's a great time to look for lists of community events and find fun things to do with friends and family this holiday season. I just went through and updated our holiday calendar with concerts in our local area for us to attend this month and it's nice to have things to look forward to each week.
To find events you can search for holiday event calendars on community, church or temple, city government, shopping center, your local newspaper and other websites. I would love to attend a Christmas lights boat parade this year and maybe try a Messiah Sing-a-long. I'm also planning in a few holiday movies for the family. We just bought Family Man and The Sound of Music at the thrift store last week.
I might even host a little something this year. Maybe a pancake breakfast, baked potato or soup or taco bar with a few friends. Each year I hope we can hit our favorite traditions and then try to add one or two new traditions into the mix.
One of the new traditions I wanted to incorporate this year is celebrating The Advent. Sunday was the first Sunday of of Advent and despite a few wild interruptions by a certain little person who could not sit still and needed to belt out Jingle Bells at the top of her lungs, I'd say it went well. I introduced The Advent concept and some of it's history and then we talked about Hope. We read a few scriptures and then sang O Come, O Come Emmanuel -- and of course, most importantly we lit our candle to welcome in the Light of Christ.
Since I was the only person who knew the song we practiced it a few times and by the end it was sounding pretty good once everyone got the tune down. Then we sang a few other favorites. I think our all time favorite is Angels We Have Heard On High, based on the wild enjoyment of everyone as they sang "Gloooo-o-o-o-o-ria" at the top of their lungs. Hopefully this year we'll have many nights of singing in the living room for a few minutes before bedtime. That is a favorite tradition in this home and does bring a calm and fresh spirit of Christmas into the house.
Over the weekend we decorated the mantle and I am still trying to figure out where we will put a small tree this year. My parents gave us their tree when the moved away last summer, so we just need to find a place where it will fit in the very compact living room. We are missing a good number of our ornaments & all our garlands and wreaths this year for the mantle, windows and front door. They didn't make it from storage. So, I spent part of the weekend making paper chains and hopefully we will make do with what we have this year. I'm all for keeping it simple anyway.
It's so nice to have The Man here this year. Last night I was trying to remember why I don't remember singing carols together last year and then remembered it was because he was not here but somewhere very far away. So we will especially enjoy this holiday season having him here with us. Hope your holiday plannings and celebrating are already in full force.