The Care Center, a local Christian relief agency, provides food and gifts for over 300 families at Christmas.
We did our part in helping with deliveries.
Of all of Christmas memories that our boys have, we hope that this is one of the strongest: Realizing that others have great need and doing our part to meet it, not just at Christmas, but all year long.
Baking, baking, baking! It's amazing what comes out of fresh butter and eggs. So far I've made peanut butter kiss cookies, Russian teacakes and rolled out sugar cookies. Last year, we got the dough all ready and could only find the Easter cut outs. So we had Christmas cookies shaped like bunnies and butterflies. :)
Our church pageant is a highlight of the advent season. Little angels wandering all over the stage, shepherds tripping up the stairs, rough-and-tumble-boys turned into wise men, high schoolers in choir robes, and the congregation holding candles singing "Silent Night." I love it.
"Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace to men on whom his favor rests." (Luke 2:14)
Tradition has it that the first one to find the green pickle on the tree opens the first present. One year, the boys were looking and looking and looking, but Heiko had hid the pickle in a ficus tree across the room. A friend gave us this a few years ago, and the tradition has stuck.
This is our front porch with light just bursting out of the house. These streams of light were one fun thing I did with a new photo tool Picnik (free download). Our house is actually bursting with happiness, because Stephan just came home from college last night. :)
Instead of using ribbons, a strip of leftover fabric from Sophia's dress just makes this package.This one has a cute little cosmetic bag tucked on the front. Fabric strips are used just like ribbon. Works for me!
This vintage tablecloth was buried in a pile of old junk and had a huge hole in the middle. The weaving and colors were beautiful and I knew I could find a use for it somewhere. The tear was smack in the middle, so I cut a slit and made a beautiful tree skirt. An old crinoline petticoat underneath fluffs it up a bit.
Some years the gingerbread house looks better than others. But tradition is that the gummi bears fall out of the chimney and that we have some semblance of a manger scene (also made with bears). It can be eaten on Jan. 1, if there is any candy left from being picked at....
And the stockings were all hung by the chimney with care. I've told my husband that if we ever have a fire, we need to grab 1) the children, and 2) the stockings. The boys like them, but complain that Stephan's is bigger than everyone else's.....
Moravian stars were originally assembled by caretakers of missionary children to help ease the separation from their parents. The tradition started 150 years ago in Herrnhut, a small town near Dresden, Germany. I love putting it together each year and letting it shine through a window. We also seem to poke our heads on it a lot.
Today is St. Nikolaustag. Tradition is that St. Nikolaus visits the children on the evening of the 5th. Shoes (which have hopefully been cleaned) are filled with either sweets or sticks, depending on behavior. I have this romantic view of red, shiny boots filled with candy and sweets, but this is what we have:
I love these wooden pyramids. I hunted these down at flea markets in Germany over the years. The fans are burned after years of age (and using the wrong candles), but they have so much character.Every year when they come out of their boxes, I have to glue little heads and arms back on. I like to imagine who curled these "branches", painted on sweet faces and lovingly attached wings. One of our favorite things is lighting the candles and watching them all spin around and around and around and around....
Aren't these gorgeous?? A girlfriend gave them to me... I thought they were from a museum in Russia or something. But she gave away her secret (they are from Michaels, a great craft store in the US). I bought some more and hung them a various lengths from the chandelier. I love Christmastime because I can look at them all the time. :)
My name is Kay. I am married and mother to three boys that are all taller than me. Making things brings a smile to my face and hopefully to yours too! Check out my etsy shop at www.prettywithribbons.etsy.com