The wind is howling, snow pelting the windows…

Oh, what a blessing to be indoors…to have shelter from the elements, food in the pantry and fridge and an itch to exercise a little creativity…

And it’s a double blessing, when so many have paved the way for us!  As we’ve entered the spirit of the Advent Season and have a few other lovely feast days approaching, the children and I have been adding a few extra touches, here and there, to prepare.

We’re truly enjoying Family In Feast and Feria’s fabulous My Little Advent  booklet.  What a great way to start our morning devotionals, and it only took an internet connection, printer, pair of scissors and hole punch to assemble it!  Thanks, Jennifer, for your creativity and generosity!  And be sure to check out all of her wonderful ideas for celebrating the season…

And, of course, you must visit Jessica at Shower of Roses…what a compendium of creativity!  As a matter of fact, Jessica had a lovely idea for adorning the oh-so-beautiful Lindt Chocolate Santa and thereby transforming him into St. Nicholas!  I love this idea, but alas, with six at home, just can’t afford the cost of the individual Lindt candies (though, if you wish, it seems that Meijer and Target have the very best prices!) So…how to accomplish something similar?  Well…I found a packages of very small “Santas” for a dollar at Target…a little hot glue, some felt and a white pipecleaner crosier, and Voila!  Teeny, tiny St. Nick chocolates…the seven year old enjoyed helping with them, and at a dollar for 7, each child can have a handful!  Not perfectly rendered, but simple enough to accomplish:

And then there’s Charlotte at Waltzing Matilda…perhaps my favorite resource!  Charlotte takes the simplest materials, usually what we have on hand, and transforms them into artful creations.  She’s quick to remind us not to sweat the details, an important message when were caught up in whether we’re approaching an activity the “right” or “wrong” way!   And her mantle silhouette was so easy to accomplish, and the effect is quite stunning…and, once again, made with materials readily available.  I used a slightly different illustration, but it turned out beautifully…pictures of the decorated mantle, later!

And her Christ Candle?  Well…utilizing one of the vintage Hallmark Cards that I found at the thrift store, plus a few stick on gems gave us a lovely Christ Candle, much prettier than the plain white one from last year.  Just need to snip a few rubber bands that I used to hold the picture in place while the glue dries:

As the feast of St. Lucia is before us, we will once again pull out one of my favorite costume items, based on a lovely wreath created by Jen at As Cozy As Spring.  My girls love their non-flammable candle wreath…but should you lack the time to construct one, here is a delightful paper crown that any little girl would be proud to don…

A few pictures of St. Lucia over the past three years:

2007

2008


2009

Such a lovely tradition…

And, last but not least at all…a relatively new blog devoted to living the liturgical year.  Catholic Icing…Lacy has done an incredible job of assembling links and providing the rest of us with shortcuts and a host of sweet crafts.  A big thanks to all those crafty ladies out there…they make our celebrations all the more joyful through their generosity!

There’s still so much more…much to make and do…my suggestion to you:  pick just a few.  The Season is worth marking, worth celebrating…but don’t lose peace by trying to do too much.  Look at what you have on hand, and proceed…peacefully and joyfully!  Simplicity is the key…

God bless you on your Advent journey!