Advent Preparations & A Jesse Tree Ornament Swap!

by | Oct 8, 2013 | Advent and Christmas, Christmas Picture Books, Jesse Tree, Jesse Tree Ornament Swap, St. Nicholas | 23 comments

So, who else is thinking ahead and making plans for Advent and Christmas?  With my younger children out of town I have quite the list of little projects I am hoping to complete over the next week, including wrapping some of the Christmas gifts I had (thankfully) purchased throughout the year as well as wrapping up books for this year’s Advent & Christmas Book Baskets and St. Nicholas Day!  I’ll try and post a complete list sometime, but my new picks for this year do include those pictured in the basket above:  Bambinelli Sunday (a newly published book by Amy Welborn), Kersti and Saint Nicholas (written by Hilda van Stockum, originally published in 1940 and reprinted in 2010!), and The Dolls’ Christmas (OOP, I finally found an inexpensive used copy earlier this year!)

I am also going to be making some little “Angel” ornaments for a Jesse Tree Swap which Karen generously offered to host this morning on Facebook!   We will still use our original well loved felt Jesse Tree, along with our beautiful set of Jesse Tree Treasures Ornaments, but I am very excited to add a handmade set to our collection as well!  If you are interested in joining the swap go sign up now!  


  1. Nicole Bradica

    I started planning two weeks ago:) With a new babe due during Lent, I am getting all our liturgical plans in order to make it easier. Thank you so much for your posts! I am getting GREAT ideas. God Bless. Continued prayers for your family during these challenging, yet blessed, times.

  2. Marie

    How did I not know about Kersti and Saint Nicholas being reprinted? We love Hilda van Stockum and will have to add that to our collection. Thank you! You always have the BEST book recommendations and I can't wait to see the rest of your plans for this year so I can (steal them lol) make our plans. No pressure! :o)

  3. Katie V.

    I second that – love your wonderful ideas! Oohhh, seeing 'The Dolls Christmas' made me nostalgic – my mom loved Tasha Tudor and we had that book in our home growing up. I peeked at it on Amazon…but figured it isnt quite suited to three boys! 😉

  4. Katie V.

    And..Ive been wanting to order Francie on the Run and The Mitchells, also by Hilda Van Stockum!

  5. Josette

    I was eagerly awaiting this post! 🙂

  6. Jacqui

    Thanks for the reminder =) I'd like to start planning early too (for once!)

  7. 9peasMom

    I love Tasha Tudor and some of her books always end up wrapped for Christmas. The Dolls Christmas has always been so expensive, I was delighted to see a less expensive copy that you linked to!

  8. Jessica Gordon

    Congratulations on the new baby! So exciting! Thank you for the prayers! 🙂

  9. Jessica Gordon

    It looks like such a sweet book. I didn't even get past the dedication before loving it:
    "To my three little daughters, the real authors of this book, and to St. Nicholas with apologies"

    I will try and start woking on my other posts soon. lol 🙂

  10. Jessica Gordon

    We have those too and have been planning to read them! Hopefully soon!

  11. Krista

    I've been looking over "Christmas Mosaic" by Cay Gibson for some book ideas/study guides/activities, etc. There are some great finds in her book (despite some being hard to find or OOP). I'm looking forward to YOUR book list for this year and seeing what else is new for your Christmas book basket this year!

  12. Jessica Gordon

    Christmas Mosaic is excellent! I will be hosting a giveaway for an autographed copy when I post this year's book baskets 😉

  13. Amy Welborn

    Wow! Thanks for including our book in your basket!

  14. rolando

    I made a Jesse Tree inspired by this blog and I'd like to show you how this turned out.

  15. Krista

    Neat! I've had a lot of fun looking it over! I got it last year a bit too late by the time it arrived and so it's been waiting for this year to get brought back out. There are SO MANY great Christmas books out there these days. I do not get books that pertain to "Santa Claus" or any of that particular "belief system" as I want my daughter to learn about our wonderful Saint Nicholas, Advent and the story of the Christ Child that comes to us. That being said, I LOVE LOVE LOVE the tradition of the Christkind! We started that last year, too! God's angels are always hard at work, aren't they! 🙂

  16. Katie V.

    Hi Jessica,
    I think I asked you this before but I can't remember your answer. Do your children really think it is St. Nicholas who leaves them the treats? I have been letting mine think it is St. Nick, however my oldest seems a little wary. Here in Colombia it is Baby Jesus who brings the Christmas gifts. Would you mind sharing?Thanks!

  17. Jessica Gordon

    Thanks for another great book, Amy! I pre-read it and can't wait to share it with my children. I'm sure they are going to enjoy it this Advent!

  18. Jessica Gordon

    I'd love to see pictures. You are welcome to email them to me anytime. 🙂

  19. Katie V.

    Oh Jessica! You shouldnt have! Thats so thoughtful of you! Thank you! That was helpful. My older sister said that when we were little my mom did not push Santa, but rather was quiet and let our imaginations work. And the main focus was Christ's birth. I love the idea of showing our children the miracles that can happen and keeping the wonder and excitement of Christmas. And how beautiful our Catholic faith is that we always have the contrasts of fast and feast. I also remember our mother making an effort to bring us to Mass more during Advent.. God bless!


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