Monday, December 03, 2007

First Sunday In Advent 2007

On Saturday it was rainy so we decided to put off the outside lights until it was safer to send the boy up on the roof. Instead we put up the tabletop tree in the dining room and the children decorated it with my crystal and silver ornies. Bunnie was the artist, Bear was the engineer and between the two of them (and a tablecloth embroidered by my grandmother), my dining table is beyond gorgeous. The children put out the advent wreath on the kitchen table and opened day one on their calendar and then we stopped.

Now here is a fun secret that you may not know about teenagers. They are enthusiastic, but they tire quickly. What does this mean at Christmas time? It means you can either do everything yourself all at once or savor the season by letting them do just a bit at a time.

I've always been a "stay out from underfoot, I've got to get this finished before dinner/your father comes home/I've got to go to x, y or z" kind of gal. It's always been me spending most of a weekend getting everything transformed and then being tired and irritable when the children go in to finish the big tree. Every year I seem to collapse in an overwhelmed heap when it's time to finish and clean up after them.

This year at Bear's suggestion, we are going to take it slow and in small bites. This year we are going to be mindful and appreciative and let every moment of the season be a succulent morsel to enjoy and remember. Last night we lit the first candle of Advent and sat down to a spectacular dinner by the fire. I was not tired. I was not stressed. My home was tidy and peaceful. And I think we all felt like we were truly preparing for the coming of Christ.

I always tell my frantic friends and coworkers to delegate, let go and not try to control everything. I'm glad I finally took my own advice, because this was the best First Sunday in Advent I've had in years.