Advent is a time of preparation, yet it feels like I need to be prepared for Advent, so we can fully prepare for the coming of Christ. So as much as I am preparing the house, pantry and fridge for Thanksgiving, I am also preparing my Advent plans so we can prepare our hearts for Christmas.
I'm thinking we need to keep it simple this year. I'm sure I say this every year. But really, trying to do too much or too many things just complicates and stresses. Simple, simple, simple. After all Jesus birth is the reason for Christmas and the reason for all of the celebrating. It should be done in a way that brings families closer together and closer to Him. I need to watch what kind of example I am to my children as Advent moves on. Where is my focus?
Every Advent for at least the last few years, I have made an Advent chain. Each link has something we will do or enjoy on that day. Alexa, especially, loves this tradition. I start by looking at local events that our church is putting on, and also community events. Another important thing is planning Skylar's birthday party, as it fall right in the middle of Advent and I'm careful not to look at is as "one more thing to check off my list". We truly need to focus on her that day. So I make an advent calendar, that I keep hidden in my planning notebook, of all the major events of the season. Then I fill in with some of our family traditions. And from there I add days for slowly decorating, an occasional favorite Christmas movie night, and baking/candy making days. Although it sounds like a lot, many things on the chain are things we need to do anyway. Such as wrapping gifts, putting up the tree, decorating outside, mailing the Christmas cards. There are really just a handful of things that take us away from the house for "events".
I wrote more about our Advent traditions here. Hope that your Advent plans are coming along nicely. Have a wonderful weekend!