Archive for the ‘Advent’ Category

Busy day with the family so I will share a post from another wonderful Advent:

This is the third Sunday of Advent.  If you are using coloured candles, this is the pink week.  It is the Sunday of joy and rejoicing.   Rejoice in the Lord always. Again I say, rejoice; let your forbearance be known to all, for the Lord is near at hand; have no anxiety about anything, but in all things, by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be known to God. (Philippians 4:4-6).   This is the opening lines from the introit for this Sunday’s Mass.

The three candles move us from expectation, to longing, to rejoicing.  We can be confident that the grace we ask for will be given.  And soon we will be shouting with the angels, proclaiming the joy of Christ’s arrival.

Today’s Advent activity was to finish decorating in the house.  The garland and lights are up and our various angels are out.  Ella loved her stocking and was quite amazed with my German Christmas pyramid.

 My favourite Advent carol for today:

Read Full Post »

pretty, happy, funny, real

Pretty, Happy, Funny, Real this week is about my happy girl.

Ella and Daisy are very happy Daddy has started building Mt. Ella.

Daisy is loving the snow.

Guess who’s come for her annual Advent visit?

Ella’s little elf friend Merry has come for Advent.  She likes to play and she’s gathering ideas for Santa.  Ella doesn’t usually have much of a list for Santa, so Merry keeps her eyes open for the little things Ella likes.  Mostly she’s just some fun company, though elves do get into some mischief when no one is looking:

Last week we visited the Big Guy.  It’s so great to be able to go during the day mid-week.

Read Full Post »

Yesterday was the first Sunday of Advent.  It was a quiet day because Ella was having a sleepover at Grandma’s so they could go see Frozen (which is highly recommended by both Ella AND Grandma).  I took advantage of the quiet to get our Advent decorations, so I thought I’d take you on a short tour.

Ella’s nature table with the peg people nativity.  She really enjoys the Advent tree with its new decoration every day.

In the living room are my German pyramids.  The one on the right I have had for a long time.  The one on the left was a lovely surprise from my swap partner last year.  The countdown candle was from this year’s swap.

And as a total surprise, I actually won one of the door prizes at the Christkindlmarkt in Pembroke this year!

Ella’s Little People crèche set and some visitors.  I’ve given up trying to do the empty stable, Mary and Joseph travelling thing.  Ella likes to have everybody ‘in position’ right from the start.  Since I do it for her, that’s the way we do it.  It’s like always putting faces on ‘Waldorf’ based peg people.  She hates them without faces, so on go faces.

Read Full Post »

We’ve had really spotty internet the last few days, so I haven’t been able to share our Christmas tree adventure.

This year we went to a new tree farm.  There is a ridiculous lack of tree farms in the upper end of the Valley.  So we headed towards Ottawa and checked out the Cedar Hill Christmas Tree Farm.  Boy did we pick a great spot.

tree 11

Of course, Daddy couldn’t resist getting a picture of Momma and Ella.

tree 10

I’m a little taller than normal because my boots have heels.  But that really is how tall Ella is getting.

tree 8

We hopped on the wagon and headed out.  This year we wanted to try a Fraser fir.  I’ve heard they won’t drop needles and were nice and strong (I have heavy old ornaments).  The trees were gorgeous.  Nicely trimmed but didn’t look like bottle brushes -I hate that.

tree 7

Someone missed coffee break on the way down (bad Momma) and had a bit of a meltdown because we were taking too long.  But it made a cute picture.

tree 6

We finally found the perfect tree.  Luckily we had Daddy along, he’s perfect for measuring tree height.  Daddy stands tall and reaches up, that’s just about right for our 9 ft ceiling.

tree 5

Heading back to the pick up location.  Standing around waiting isn’t Ella’s cup of tea, so she and I walked back to the main building.  Daddy had a bit of a sad time waiting for the tractor.  He kept thinking Mom would step out from around  the trees.  Mom loved finding the perfect tree.

train 3

Meanwhile, Ella was having a grand time on the sledding hill.  This is her first time sliding down a decent hill.  Before she’s only had the snow pile in the yard. She had so much fun, but thought there should be a tow truck for the return trip up hill.

tree 9

Then we headed inside for some lunch and hot cocoa. Prices were reasonable and the food was delicious.  And the staff really friendly.  Daddy wanted to bring the whole building home for a house .  In fact it was bigger than our entire house!

tree 1

Ella would have been happy if we could have stayed all day.  She loves playing on these large ‘square’ bales.  They also had a regular play area.

tree 2

We had a great time.

Christmas tree

Ella did a great job decorating the tree.  She had most of it done by the time I had all the special stuff unwrapped.  The tree isn’t really on a funny angle, our living room isn’t big enough for me to get a good picture.  Also, you can’t really see out silver star, but it’s there.  I’ve really got to get my wrapping done today.


Read Full Post »

Second Sunday of Advent

Ella’s sick and I have a migraine, so I will share this post from 2010:

Last week we lit the candle of Hope.  Today we light the candle of Peace or Grace as well.  We want the grace to hear the Promise and to invite God into all parts of our lives.


<iframe width=”560″ height=”315″ src=”http://www.youtube.com/embed/JEEd0uWnDGs&#8221; frameborder=”0″ allowfullscreen>


Read Full Post »

Merry the Elf Mischief

yarn along

Merry the Elf has been visiting our house for a few years now.  And there is one thing you can count on if you let an Elf hang around the house.  You never know what kind of mischief they will get into when no one is around…

Merry Mischief

Merry likes to play with the Calico family and sneak their cookies.

Merry Mischief 3

She’s even been caught on Daddy’s desk at the computer.  We think she must have sent Santa an email update.   But the worst was yet to come…

Merry Mischief 2

Merry got caught looking through Momma’s Christmas swap presents from her Ravelry group.  Well, apparently I have Ella well-trained about snooping in presents.  Ella was so upset at Merry in the presents that Ella actually wrote Santa a letter reporting on Merry’s bad behaviour.  She had the envelope all addressed and ready to go.  Ella and Daddy had a chat and she decided that maybe ‘tattling’ on Merry wouldn’t be the nice thing to do  🙂


Read Full Post »

Farm Girl Friday

For Farm Girl Friday I thought I’d share what we have been doing to celebrate Advent.

Every night we read a chapter from The Jesse Tree and the Advent Storybook.

And we also read a story book too.

Sunday we got out our Advent wreath and tree and set up Ella’s nature table for Christmas.

Dec 1

We read The Very Fairy Princess: A Fairy Merry Christmas.  Some days I find the nicest little books at No Frills. And yes, the book is by that Julie Andrews.

Monday was a very special day.  Ella’s elf friend Merry arrived!


I know there have been some rants out there about Elves visiting and how it’s not going to make children behave.  Well this isn’t why Merry comes to visit.  See that happy smile?  What you don’t see is the jumping up and down and happy shouting when she spotted Merry for the first time.  It’s just fun to have a mischievous elf around the house.  And you know what, ‘remember Merry’s watching’ does help rein in the sillies.

Ella also set up her Christmas stable.  As usual, Ella supplemented with her other LP animals.  She has so much fun with her stable set.  She’s going to wear out the battery playing the song though  🙂


December 4th Daddy surprised us by getting the Christmas lights put up outside.  We also put our Christmas candle in the window.  I found my other German pyramid and got them lit too.


Ella was a little pokey getting ready for bed, so we just read the reading for today not the extra story book.

December 5 we hung up our door wreaths and our bunny angel made an appearance too.

door angel

We really enjoyed A Gift from Saint Nicholas, which we found at the library.  I was hoping for more of a biography, but this is a beautiful book with a good story.  Ella really liked it.  The illustrations remind me of Jan Brett.

December 6 we celebrated St. Nicholas day by baking St. Nick shaped speculatius (Kris Kringle) cookies with the cool cookie cutter I received the other day.  Ella really enjoyed our new book, The Legend of the Christmas Stocking.

Today Ella went skating and then for a sleep over at Grandma’s (it’s Knit Night for Momma).  Not sure what they will read tonight, but Grandma has quite the collection of books.

Read Full Post »



I don’t know how I forgot to do a Yarn Along post yesterday, but I’ve actually got something finished to share.

Yarn Along -5 Dec

See, when I change to a reasonable lace pattern I can get a shawl finished in a reasonable time  🙂

I’ve started some fingerless gloves for Ella’s dance teacher.  I just realized that next Wednesday is the last day before Christmas holidays, so I have to get busy.  I’m also making the gloves shorter.  Pamela is my height and doesn’t need gloves that long.

Tonight we’re reading The Legend of the Christmas Stocking.  It’s about St. Nicholas.  We talked about today being St. Nicholas’ day and even made cookies.  But we don’t make a big deal about it.  I don’t want her to get confused between Nicholas and Santa Claus and give up on him.  I know it’s popular among the ‘homeschool crowd’ to be against Santa and I even have a friend say he was made up by Coke in the 1950’s (even though Clement Moore wrote “A Visit From St. Nicholas is 1822).  We like the magic of Santa and he lets me spoil Ella extra.

St. Nick cookies

Read Full Post »

Stir up, we beseech thee, O Lord, the wills of thy faithful people; that they, plenteously bringing forth the fruit of good works, may of thee be plenteously rewarded; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen. Today is ‘Stir up Sunday‘, the last Sunday of the Anglican year and the last Sunday before Advent.    It is also the Sunday that, traditionally, the Christmas pudding and Christmas cake are made.  That’s what we are busy doing today.  Ella is such a help at cutting all the fruit and nuts.

Christmas Plum Pudding
1/2 c butter                                       1/2 c sugar
1/4 c molasses                                  1 egg
1/2 c milk                                            1 c flour
1/2 c breadcrumbs                         1/2 tsp bk powder
1/2 tsp salt                                           1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg                                   1/2 c raisins
1/2 c currants                                     1/4 c walnuts
Grease and sugar your pudding mould (or bowl as I use).
Cut butter into the dry ingredients.  Add the chopped fruit and nuts.  Stir in the rest of the ingredients.

 Spoon into mould and cover with 2 layers of buttered tin foil.  Tie securely and don’t forget a handle.

 Steam over medium heat (water half-way up the mould) for 3 hours.

Invert and serve with caramel sauce.

Caramel Sauce
3 Tbsp butter                                         1 c brown sugar
3/4 c water                                             1/4 c milk
2 Tbsp cornstarch                               pinch of salt
Melt butter in a heavy saucepan.  Add brown sugar and stir until melted and bubbly.  Slowly add water and stir until dissolved.  Make a paste with the milk and cornstarch and salt.  Stir into hot mixture.  Reduce heat and cook until thick.  If too thick, thin with a little milk.

Read Full Post »


I know there is no official Farm Girl Friday this week, but I wanted to share our last week of Advent fun.



We continue to enjoy the mischief Merry gets into overnight.  It’s amazing how fast Ella finds Merry.

Saturday we made edible gifts for the birds.  Very easy, just coat large pine cones with peanut butter then roll the cones in bird seed.  We also found some extra goodies for the cats to keep them occupied while the birds enjoyed their treat.  We read Jingle Bells and Poky Little Puppy’s First Christmas.  More Little Golden Books from my childhood.


Sunday, our fourth Sunday of Advent.  The Sunday of the Angels.  After church we made a mouse angel from Christmas With the Mousekins.  We read Listen said the Donkey.



Monday we finished up our Christmas baking.  We need to get the tins filled and ready for delivery.  We read The Nutcraker and The Hat.



Tuesday we wrapped our presents and put them under the tree.  We read Santa’s Workshop and Leave it to Rudolph.


Wednesday, the Winter Solstice.  Ella will be happy to hear that the days are getting longer from now on  🙂  We made Winter Solstice chicken pie.  We read Bruno in the Snow and the winter book from our new Year at Brambly Hedge.


Thursday we delivered our cookie tins.  They were well received as always.  Now we can nibble on the leftovers.  We read Berenstain Bears Joy of Giving.


Friday we made paper snowflakes.  I tried some fancy patterns off the internet, but our paper is too thick.  I fear it’s the only snow we’re seeing this Christmas.  We read Christmas Trolls.


This will likely be my last post until sometime later in the Christmas Season.  This is what we hope to do and read for the next couple days.


Saturday, Ella hopes to come to midnight mass (‘midnight mouse’ -not sure where that came from) with Momma and Grandma for the first time.  Service starts at 11 pm, so I’m not sure.  We’ll real The Night Before Christmas and Madeline’s Christmas.  We’ll also finish off The Advent Story Book and The Jesse Tree.



Christmas Day!!  We’ll read The Christmas Story.


I must say a giant Thank You to my Mom who saved most of these great books from when I was a kid and salvaged a few from Dad’s old house too.  Without her our Christmas book list would have been much smaller!


Read Full Post »

« Newer Posts - Older Posts »