Friday, December 2, 2011

Seven Quick Takes Friday (24)

Thanks to Jen for hosting over at  Christmas traditions edition.

So I have to confess that I have been listening to Christmas music since before Thanksgiving.  Alicia has a cute little kids Christmas CD that has her name in it, telling her about the real meaning of Christmas.  Of course, it started making some odd noises, so I ripped it and then burned it, now the songs are all out of order.  May have to re-recreate the CD for her.  Can I also just say that I watched the CMA Country Special on Thursday night and I love that the musicians will actually wear crosses (some of the ladies might do better to dress a little more modestly) and sign REAL Christmas songs.  You know, ones that aren't afraid to mention Jesus...  Rudolph and Frosty are ok, but traditional carols are the ones that mean the most.  When listening to my daughter's CD this year it took me by surprise that I was finally struck by the line, "Long lay the world, in sin and error pining, til he appeared and the soul felt it's worth."  HOW BEAUTIFUL!!!  And how true!

We went to the Christmas parade in Derry the Saturday after Thanksgiving.  Had a great time with the girls, hubby and my mother in law.  We also met up with hubby's niece and her daughter and nephew and his son.  His nephew's daughter was in the parade for her school's band.  Beautiful weather - I wore short sleeves...  Glad that the people marching in the parade were not afraid to actually say "Merry Christmas!"  That's the spirit!

This year our traditional day after Thanksgiving putting up the Christmas tree was delayed to the Sunday after Thanksgiving.  Our "fake" tree is one that we won from our church back when we first moved into our home back in 2006.  We have put up our family tree in my parents' house this year and it takes up a good amount of room.  Alicia helped to assemble the tree and helped put on a few ornaments while Hannah took a nap.  Hannah has enjoyed looking at the tree though.  She now looks out the window and says tree so I think she's confused by the tree being inside.  I do love sitting by the tree at night with the lights off for a few silent moments with a glass of egg nog.

We have an Advent wreath that I have never been very good about using, but this year it is out on my parent's dining room table and I read from a book every night at the dinner table.  I am pretty sure Alicia doesn't get it, since it's advanced, but maybe next Advent I will find a more kid friendly daily advent book.  I've really enjoyed doing this as a family.  I think it helps that hubby is finally on a day shift, so the tradition is a new one that I am pretty happy about.
We have a Little People Nativity that we got for Alicia for her second Christmas.  She and Hannah are having fun playing with the animals and the other figures too.  Still mostly into the animals though, but I like having religious toys that they can play with.  Little ones mostly understand the toys and presents, so it's difficult to find things to fit in that make it more about the true meaning of the season for them.  Maybe someday they will play more with Mary, Joseph and Jesus.  But we have books that we read about Christmas.  Maybe we will try to get to the live nativity.  I have to take the time to figure out where and when it is around here.  I think they do it in Windham.

Driving around to look at Christmas lights is another holiday favorite.  There are a few houses that have a TON of lights around here.  Alicia was cute about it last year and this year with her talking so much, it should be really cute to see what she says.  We may take a trip to the Enchanted Christmas Village sometime during the week if we get the chance.  Not sure about timing of it all, but I would like to bring the girls this year.  Lots of lights in there that we could walk around to see.  We went a few years ago, before we had Hannah, and enjoyed it but the lines were long.  Hannah is a bit more active than Alicia, so I think she'd have a hard time waiting in the lines.

The Christmas season should truly be marked by the beauty of God sending his Son to us in such simplicity.  Jesus came into this world as a helpless newborn, totally dependent on Mary and Joseph.  Jesus was born into a humble family, in a stable, placed in a manger.  He wasn't born in a palace, he wasn't raised by rich, well-to-do parents.  He didn't come down from Heaven blazing in almighty light to show who He was.  He came to us simply, humbly, knowing that we all too often do not feel or know our own worth.  All God wants from us is an open heart to receive Him.  God wants us to feel His love.  May we use this Christmas season to open ourselves to the gift of Jesus and remember that HE is the reason for the season!

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