Sunday, December 03, 2006

Advent Thoughts and Surprises.....

Today is the first Sunday of Advent! Instead of "Silly Quiz Sunday", for the next 4 Sundays I am going to feature fun and/or religious (my apologies, Birdman) Christmas links. At my house, we love Advent calendars...also known as "countdown" calendars, and this year we are featuring the latest "candy countdown" from Starbucks. My 6 year old is having a great time opening a little drawer each day, taking out the piece of candy, and then turning the drawer around to build the colorful picture. We've done a Santa door hanger with daily pockets to take a treat out of, or paper links on a chain, which you can tear one off each day.

Here are some links for Advent calendars. The first one is a website you can go to and click each day for a poem or a surprise:

Click HERE to try it!

The next is from Jan Brett. It's a paper Advent countdown you can print out and make yourself. Click HERE to download the pages.

I received a wonderful care package/Christmas surprise in the mail the other day, from one of my new Blogger friends...someone who visits this page regularly. She had seen my post last Monday about my financial woes, and sent me some things to cheer me up. In the package was a DVD of "The Polar Express", a package of Jiffy Pop popcorn, some beautiful snowflake ornaments for the kids, a fun ornament for me, and other goodies. What a great surprise! I was touched and amazed, and the kids were delighted. We've already watched the movie, eaten the popcorn, and the ornaments will be on our tree this very day. Thank you again (you know who you are). It improved my mood and Christmas spirit immensely.

Another holiday surprise: last night Baron and I had planned to attend my faculty Christmas party together. When he arrived to pick me up, I was surprised with a beautiful bouquet of pink roses (my favorite) "just because". He knew he had scored major points by the delighted look on my face, and all the love and kisses he received as a "thank you". We had a great time at my teacher-friend Jamie's house, although I think Baron was surprised at how rowdy teachers can be when they cut loose! The "white elephant" gift exchange got a little out-of-hand, even though Baron ended with a decent gift. He played a competitive game of darts with one of my co-teachers and we watched the Rutgers/W.Virginia game, while filling our bellies with all kinds of good food. It was especially special for me, because it was the first time any one had accompanied me to this annual event. I never had anyone special enough to take before!

After church today, my kids and I headed over to the church's annual Children's Advent Party. My oldest son, Joseph, and his friend Katie were playing the parts of Joseph and Mary and reading a children's version of the Christmas story. There was a pancake breakfast, Christmas trees decorated by the school children being raffled (I hope I win the teddy bear one done by my son's 1st grade), pictures with Santa, and Advent crafts. We had good family fun and headed home full of pancakes, arms loaded with handmade goodies. What a great way to start the Advent season.

Have a great week, all!

First Week of Advent
Sunday Romans 13:11-14
Monday 1 Corinthians 1:3-9
Tuesday Mark 13:33-37
Wednesday John 1:1-5
Thursday John 1:6-9
Friday Jeremiah 33:14-16
Saturday Isaiah 60:19-22


Tense Teacher said...

What a great day! And I loved the comment about teachers cutting loose... Isn't it the truth?! Good thing our students have no idea.

MIA said...

Guess what, we are doing the starbucks advent too! it's really great every morning or night time treat. Baron=sweetheart. We are lucky. I can't even begin to list all the things Chris does. Like I said before, it's like Christams everyday!

Anonymous said...

Wow, thanks for sharing. That is great stuff to help get folks into the holiday spirit.

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
EC said...

Wow, I'm a bad Catholic! I didn't even know it was the first day of advent...

Bad Catholic, bad! *slapping my wrist for effect*

captain corky said...

Sounds like you had a great weekend! It was very nice of your friend to send you that care package too.

Redneck Nerdboy! said...

That was a very nice thing for your bloggerfriend to do. Snaps for her! :D

KaraMia said...

It's a tradition in my house to have the candy advent calendars. My son would be very sad without it...

Hang in there, I know it's hard this time of year. I'm right there with you. Thank God for friends!

Anonymous said...

I will be here with Christmas bells on every day!
Nothing wrong with a difference of opinion between blog pals!
I loved doing advent calendars when I was young. =)

FindingHeart said...

Every year we tried the advent calendar, it would get lost in the shuffle. Maybe I'll try it with candy... not a bad idea. :)

Oh, and teacher party memories: the chocolate body part candies, the teacher who annually gets too drunk, same teacher 'falling' into the pool and swimming in her underwear, the almost-retired teachers who were being encouraged to smoke a joint by the younger teachers... Ah, memories. :)

Anonymous said...

I plan to do the Advent reading for this week. Thanks for sharing. :)