My mom set out the village every year, the ceramic kind, houses with twinkling lights and skaters that twirled around on the miniature ice rink. I have parts of that set now and the kids like arranging it every year.
The first day of Advent was building our Lego Village. I love this new take on the traditional Christmas village and with kids into Legos, it's more our style right now. Last year we bought Winter Village and Bakery and this year we added the Winter Market. Jake is the one that builds them, the boys help but with over 1,000 pieces they tend to lose interest. I just love watching it all come together.
Last year's video tour:
This year's video tour (it was my idea to have the line for Santa):
Another item on the Advent calendar- going to see Santa!
With all this merriment going on, my house looks like it got ransacked by elves. Somehow I will get the energy and motivation to clean. Maybe Elvis, our Elf on the Shelf will help me out.
I was inspired by reading the Art of Simple's post on An easy, no-frills Advent calendar. We have lots of traditions in my family and I liked the idea of designating a day for each one but allowing some flexibility as well.
I wrote everything I could think of on a list, asking the kids for their input.
I bought my materials from Micheal's- tiny clothespin clips, ribbon, 6 x 6 white cardstock, and scrapbook paper, double stick tape, and small post-it notes.
Here's my version:
Amelia helped me write this one:
This is great because we can customize it every year based on what is going on with our family. Things that made our list this year:
Holiday movies like The Santa Clause, Elf, Home Alone, and more
Christmas play- Coleman plays the Roman Guard and Carter plays a cow
Looking at Christmas lights
Read Christmas story in Bible
New things to try like making foil ornaments
We started early and decorated the house
and already visited Zoolights!
The kids are looking forward to today which says "Build Lego Winter Village"! Looking forward to all our traditions this Christmas season.
From the ultimate Christmas movie, White Christmas: May your days be merry and bright, And may all your Christmases be white... okay, well if you're from the desert like us, you can pretend there's snow.
It has been a rough week here at the Breedlove household. Jake has chickenpox, all five of us have had a stomach bug, there's been a cracked iPad, a missing screw for my sewing machine, and the electric bill increased by $50 a month. I am worn down, physically and mentally and have yet to begin the Christmas celebrations. And yet, in the middle of all this, the tragedy of Newtown reminds me that I have so much. I have three beautiful children who make me laugh and who love to snuggle next to me on the couch. I have a husband who despite being itchy and sore, was able to stay home with each of the child as they had their turn at being sick. I have family who despite the sickies, a crabby limo driver, and the rain still managed to have a good time for our Christmas lights tradition. It's in those moments that God reminds me to 'be still' and focus on what I do have.
Today, there were some tears. Even though I know I have so much, I will always miss the one I don't have- my mom. I saw these flowers at the grocery store and instantly picked them up. They were beautiful and reminded me of my mom, she always loved flowers. And so they sit on my dining room table, brightening up the space, and reminding me to 'be still'. Even when one particular little person breaks one of the flowers and pushes it into the water. I'm sure they were only "helping" mommy arrange them. I take a breath, smile, and practice being still in the moment.