This year, since I don’t know if I will be home or in the hospital, I have tried to keep our plans fairly simple (read: can be done whether or not I am home). Other than a couple of things that will have to be done on the particular day, I am all set for this year. Here’s what I have planned for our family:
Since the symbol for wisdom is a book, this year I purchased a craft kit from Oriental trading for the children to make Christmas Bookmarks. Since we generally add a new Catholic Prayer Book or Catechism to our collection this day as well, this year we’ll be giving the children A Catholic Child’s Picture Dictionary which was originally published in 1956 but has recently been reprinted. I was flipping through it the other day, before wrapping it up, and it looks wonderful!
The past couple years, we have emphasized the word “house” in this Antiphon, and have made our Gingerbread houses this evening. This year, I found a darling little village of houses made by Wilton which I purchased for the children instead. (I’ve seen it at both Wal Mart and Michaels for less than $10! If you use a coupon at Michaels, it would only be $5-6!) This way they will each get to decorate their own. Isn’t it cute!
I was so happy when I received an email from a visitor letting me know that the main provider of Poinsettia’s was removed from Life Decision’s boycott list! Yay!! So, this year we will go back to purchasing our Poinsettia today and we will also read The Legend of the Poinsettia. (Speaking of which, have any of you read The Miracle of the First Poinsettia? It’s not available at my library right now and looks good too!)
For dinner we will have Hearty Beef Stew, which is full of root vegetables. I even have it in the freezer, all ready to go into the crock pot, in case the baby has been born! And for dessert, maybe Carrot Cake.
Since this is initially a monastic tradition, and on this night, the monk in charge of the wine cellar would provide a special bottle of wine. We will also be having some special drinks with dinner. Costco has a great package of delicious fruit spritzers which I picked up.
For dessert I’m hoping to make “O Dayspring Ice Cream” inspired by a Blue Bunny recipe:
After the kids are in there pajamas, we will surprise them with a trip to town to see some of the Christmas lights! This is always such fun, and we all look forward to this little outing!
There are lots of crown cakes to choose from over at Catholic Cuisine, but I think it would be fun to bake and decorate some of our Christmas sugar cookies as crowns!!
Needless to say, baking cookies, on December 22nd, probably won’t happen this year, so I also purchased the King of the Golden City on CD. I’d been looking for an excuse to buy it anyways! 😉 We do have the lovely cassettes by Simonetta, and the book and study guide from CHC, but I was so excited to see that Pro Multis Media has produced it as an audio dramatization with a talented cast of children actors! (It is also available from Catholic Child.) I can’t wait to listen to it!
This is the last of the O Antiphons… Tomorrow will be Christmas Eve! The treat for today is going to be another new Nativity Set for the kids to play with during the Christmas season. I purchased two this year, one which I gave them on the first Sunday of Advent (saving baby Jesus for Christmas of course) and one for this day. I just ran across another children’s nativity set I love… I’m trying really hard to refrain from purchasing it as well!
You can also listen to the O Antiphons beautifully chanted in Latin here.
I am also considering purchasing An Advent Processions Based on the Great O Antiphons . Have any of you heard it before? Would you recommend it?