It’s middle of December and Christmas is coming soon, very soon. I’ve often thought about how this dark and dreary this month would be like if we didn’t have Christmas to look forward to? From old ages, long before we knew anything about Christianity there also was a celebration this time of year. It’s the time of year for the solstice and for 3 days our ancestors drank beer and sacrificed a pig to the gods to ensure the coming summer would be good. So December has always been a festive month in our part of the world, people was busy brewing and preparing food for the big party all of December.
I think we need this festive season for our sanity really, to prepare for and look forward to something this time of year is essential for us in the cold and darkness. Now that we’re not a bunch of heathens anymore we do like the rest of the Christian world and celebrate the birth of baby Jesus.
Advent is the beginning of the church year and in every home it’s advent candles. 4 candles, we lit one each Sunday. This year Christmas Eve is a Sunday so we lit the last candle then. We have a little verse we read when we lit each candle. The first candle is for joy, the second for hope, the third for longing and the fourth for peace. On the fourth Sunday we let all 4 candles burn down, we burn them for joy, for hope, for longing, but most of all for piece on earth. That is what our little verse is about. Traditionally the advent candles were purple, but now we use other colors too. Mine are white or beige, we like them to match our interior you know.
Something else which is a must have in advent is the advent star. Every home has at least one star in the window. It’s so important to have the star up by the 1st of December. I think there’s not many homes without a advent star or ten. We have six this year around the house. I remember one year i couldn’t find the advent stars, it was a major crisis.
Other than that we do like most of you do, we bake, cook and clean, and we run around finding Christmas gifts. It can be a very stressful time if you are a perfectionist. Luckily I’m not, and once a very wise woman told me that we’re not celebrating Christmas in the kitchen cabinets, so it really doesn’t matter if you had the time to clean them or not. Tradition says it should be 7 kind of Christmas cakes/cookies, but I’m not much of a baker. Anyway no one in my family really care about the traditional Christmas cakes, so if I spent a lot of time making cakes they would be what we call in and out cakes. You carry them in, no one eats, then you carry them out again, at last you feed the birds with them. Some years I make a ginger bread house though. Not sure if it will happen this year.
All photos from our home.
Next time I’ll tell you a little about how we celebrate Christmas.
Until next time