Celebrating Advent

Gaudete-Sunday5Five years ago, I moved from Central Illinois to Denver for my job.  This means that each year I look forward to travel around Christmastime, in order to allow me to spend the holidays with my extended family.  This means we get to live with my parents for a few weeks, and that can makes it challenging to have our own family traditions.

Last year, we discussed some things we might be able to do for Advent.

The biggest thing that we did was to celebrate St. Nicholas‘s feast day.  On the eve of the feast day, we said some special prayers, put a small statue of the bishop Saint Nicholas on our family altar, and read my daughter (who is two and a half) a children’s story about the bishop of Myra.  We also had our daughter put out her shoe, she was happy to receive a small gift on his feast day.

On Saint Nicholas’s actual feast day, we had a leisurely evening together as a family and said some prayers for Saint Nicholas’s intercession.  We also had an extended family meal and made some special punch for the occasion, which our daughter loved.

We also added the Magnificat Advent Companion to our prayer rotation and a small, portable Advent wreath so we could count the weeks until we celebrate Christ’s birth.  We also spent much of the month of December with friends and family, focusing on having a relaxing, enjoyable and festive season.  There are plenty of other websites that have provided a myriad of Advent observances, these are just the ones that worked best for our family this year.

If you have a special Advent observance, share it in the comment box.  We’d love to hear what other families do to celebrate this very special time of year.

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