Sunday, November 28, 2010

First Sunday in Advent

 
Caroline looks forward to the first day of Advent for months because, as she says, it's candle lighting time! Advent wreath candles, that is, helping C count down those long-for-her weeks until Christmas.

Since our wreaths are made out of fir and dry out quickly, I usually wait until the very first day of Advent to buy one, visiting the local floral store and the fancier shops in the malls. This year we didn't find anything we perfectly liked, and I had just about decided to buy the most passable version and prune it to satisfaction when I remembered that some of our Czech friends make their own wreaths.

Sure enough, a little digging around in our local shop turned up ribbonless wreaths, candles to spec and all the decoration you might want. We picked up a tiny mushroom in honor of Eurolush, golden pine cones which reminded me of the South, and dried cinnamon and oranges for C who thought they smelled divine.

Just before dinner, we constructed our wreath - C shows you how. Her favorite addition, held in the wings till last, is the angel given to her by one of the ladies in a neighborhood store. It was a present given to her for a smile and a long question in Czech. For her it represents serendipity, for me it's a reminder that behind stern public faces there are soft hearts. Soft hearts and hands that make beautiful wreaths, then light their candles in our December dark.

16 comments:

Eleanor said...

Beautiful post, thanks Julia!!!

Of course, the minute I saw the mushroom I thought of Eurolush.

Lynn said...

Beautiful! I can smell the citrus and cinnamon from here...

Julia said...

Making the wreath was really a treat to do - especially when we found all the little trinkets to add to it. They are great reminders of friends and family all over the place, not to mention they smell good ;-). Thanks for the nice comments ya'll.

Barrett Bonden said...

"given to her for a smile and a long question in Czech." And there are those who say: Why bother learning a foreign language? - if you shout loud enough in English you'll get what you want. But you never get the gesture, the heartfelt response. I know C is required to know Czech but using it to delight one of the natives wasn't an obligatory part of the contract.

In our village in France I was having difficulty using my power drill on the garage which was 50 m away from the house. An elderly man, living opposite in reduced circumstances, volunteered the use of his extension lead. We chatted about one of my burning passions, the Tour de France, which turned out to be one of his. His eyes lit up and he asked me if I'd like to watch that afternoon's stage on his TV. We didn't talk in English. C's wreath reaches out, in both directions.

tuckova said...

Oh, WELL DONE! Both the post and the wreath. Your advent wreath is like a charm bracelet (remember those?)... a little reminder of everything. Very sweet.

Green Girl in Wisconsin said...

What a lovely thing--the candles and the fresh wreath. And what a funny coincidence that I was tromping about our property Sunday afternoon cutting things because I refuse to put any faux garland/fir/pine/berries in my house!

Lucie Taylor said...

You made me miss Czech. Your comment about stern faces and soft hearts brought little bit of tears into my eyes. Happy advent! Also, C looks very much like you.

Art Song said...

I love reading your posts! Such poetry in life, it is inspiring. Happy Holidays!

Art Song said...

And.....I barely know how to post comments so I'm not sure when or why "Art Song" was chosen for me but this is Cris in Chicago...by the way:)

Ellen said...

Lovely! See, you know you guys want me to wait on the tree til you arrive...

alice c said...

How lovely - and how grown up Miss C is these days!

Wishing you a wonderful Advent.

Theron said...

And here I thought maybe Eurolush was some European festival or something a Statesider like me wouldn't know about, lol.

You do make it all seem so wonderful. I have actually lived in Europe and know it's not always quite so romantic, but a write up of day like this makes me just a wee bit jealous!

ditdit said...

What a beautiful wreath you guys made!

Rouchswalwe said...

Ah, those hard exteriors house soft hearts more often than not, I've found. And the key is language. Happy Advent!

Lucy said...

How wonderful, I can quite smell it.

I do love Advent, C is right!

eurolush said...

Before I read the post...I spotted the spotted mushroom! Squeee!

Love the wreath! Caroline did such a great job decorating it! You must be very proud!

XX E