Monday, November 26, 2012

Holiday Preparations: Wooden Ornaments

Alas, it has been months since I've penned this blog last and for that, and for my overbooked schedule, I apologize.  Life is keeping us very busy and I don't have much time for elaborate, well planned posts.  But, what I love about December is that as part of our homeschooling year, I block out much of the month to focus on all of the wonderful festivals, baking, and traditions; and it's a time when we slow down, stray from more formal lessons, and focus more on creating memories by living in the moment.  So, I am hoping to write many posts over the month of December and would love to start by sharing some warm fuzzies that we treasure in our home. 

Like many of you, I prefer anything handmade.  It is hard to find natural, handmade in the local shops, so I often head over to etsy or track down obscure shops online where I can find those heartfelt goodies that make us feel cozy inside.  I was thrilled to find these handmade wooden ornaments from Germany at a local shop near our home last year.  There were so many cute ones that we had to narrow it down over and over again and I hope that we can snag a few more this year - adding to our little collection through the years.

The girls begged me to get out the old Christmas bins from the garage (no basements where I live) so they could begin decorating the tree and these were some of the first ornaments to go up...

Flying Santa

The Baker

Santa with his Walking Stick

Our Russian Soldier

Of course, the girls found the mini village my father had surprised us with the year I got married and the twins got sidetracked, but hey - any creative play is great by me!  December is a time to slow down, turn inward, and recharge the soul.  Kids definitely recharge through freeplay while we adults often recharge by ignoring the phone, dishes, and laundry and enjoy watching those little ones around us in all of their innocent, joyful splendor.  Childhood is a wonder to behold!

We are preparing our special holiday table, our Advent spiral, Advent wreath, and of course - we are excited about our first festival in Dec - Bishop Nicholas' Day!  This special tradition was made even more fun thanks to the amazingly beautiful and talented Christine Natale and her St. Nick stories - read one a day, beginning Dec 1st and get your kiddos into the spirit of giving and sharing... I have referenced Christine many times in my blog and there is a big reason why - she truly encompasses the Waldorf heart through her love of children and her foundational training and understanding.  I wanted to post the link to her stories now for anyone who plans to begin them December 1st!

You can read more about St. Nicholas here.  And I will be back with more photos as we prepare for this most wonderful time of year! 

Also, I have several comments that I've not answered yet - I hope to eventually get to them.  And I just saw that I have reached a wonderful milestone of 300 followers :) So in honor of that, guessed it...I am planning a special giveaway - so stay tuned!  Hugs to all of you!