I’ve been busy making my Advent ring today as it’s the first Sunday in Advent. It’s a tradition that goes back to my childhood which I’ve chosen to carry on with my family. When the children were little it marked the beginning of Christmas celebrations. We have a collection of Christmas books that would come out of storage, we’d light a candle, read some stories, sing some carols round the piano, and finish with the story of the Nativity. Of course there was the year when we got to the bit in the story and I said ‘What’s the baby called?’ James replied ‘Jesus’ to which Helen said ‘But I want to call it Rachel’ and she insisted it was Rachel for the rest of that Christmas!!
Now the children are 17 and 19, they’re clearly not interested in such traditions, so I’ve changed it slightly! I tried lighting the candles during Sunday tea but it seemed rushed, so this year I’m making it into a bit of me time!, I’m lighting it at 5pm when I like to sit down with a glass of sherry, maybe do a bit of hand-sewing…a quiet time!
My candlestick was a bargain on Otley market, I got the idea of sitting a wreath on it from a flower arranging class one of our WI ladies ran. I couldn’t get one small enough so I trimmed it a bit. I gathered the foliage from the garden, I like to use lots of different foliage, so there’s box, ivy, cupressus, eucalyptus, osmanthus (instead of holly) plus others whose names escape me! I usually try to put some herbs in such as rosemary and sage, to add a subtle scent, but my plants aren’t big enough this year. I remembered not to put choisya in as it smells like cats pee! I’ve added sedum and astrantia flowers for a bit of colour. As this arrangement has to last til Christmas, I don’t usually put decorations in yet, as leaves die off they can be replaced by pinecones, poppy heads and wired baubles. I spotted the lights in a florists in Otley yesterday, they give an extra bit of sparkle.
This afternoon I thought I’d start some Christmas sewing, I fell for the design on Candyfloss Ramparts, it just made me smile! I had my first attempt with a transfer pen, my test on some cotton worked beautifully, not so successful on felt! I resorted to the air-erasable pen to try and show the letters. I’m really pleased with Rudolf, the top letters aren’t bad, but the bottom ones are a bit wobbly! It’s all back stitch with two or three strands of embroidery thread so it didn’t take long at all, just got to get another frame to hang it in now 🙂