This is the beautiful week third week in Advent, in which so many facets of light shine through in different ways and traditions.
In the traditional Christian view of Advent, this is the week that the third candle in the Advent Wreath is lit and it usually is a pink candle, seen as a symbolism of joy and hope. What I love about this week is that to me it strikes at the heart of simplicity and minimalism. We don’t need a lot to be happy. This is the week to hike, play board games with your children, light candles for dinner and be grateful and full of love for all that we have in each other, not in material things. This can be a great week for adults to evaluate if the materialism of the season has gotten out of control. If it has, my solution would be to tuck away some of the gifts for the time of Christmastide (you can get gifts throughout Christmastide!), tuck some away for a future birthday or holiday, and to replace some of those material gifts with coupons for the gifts of time or service.
This third week is the week of the Animal kingdom in Waldorf circles. We celebrate the animals who are waiting for the Christ Child. Here is a back post with ideas for the fourth week of Advent and a few of my favorite things for the fourth week of Advent.
Thursday is Winter Solstice. I find it a lovely day to bake a sunny bread, just like in the book “Sun Bread”, to watch the sun rise, and to eat dinner by candlelight. I really enjoyed this post by Backwoods Mama about some other solstice ideas.
Looking ahead, the fourth week of Advent will be very short (Sunday) and then the next day is Christmas with the twelve days of Christmastide to follow. If you need ideas for the twelve days of Christmastide, which traditionally in Waldorf communities is a time of inner work and warm in person connection, try these posts:
2009- The Twelve Days of Christmas
2012- The Twelve Holy Nights: An Introspective Approach
2013- Celebrating Christmastide
Christmastide: Forest, Farm, Field, and Stream
I am also looking ahead to the wonderful cozy month of January, when things in the Deep South have always seemed slower for me due to weather. I have some ideas for celebrating coziness, gratitude, love, and service.
First of all, Epiphany: A Sweet Epiphany Celebration
January: Celebrating January
A Few of My Favorite Things for January
This year, I have a volunteer commitment one morning week through January and February, and on Martin Luther King Jr. Day of service on January 15, so I will be limiting some other things for these two months until my longer-term commitment is done. I am planning ahead for eight weeks of self-care and replenishment since we had a busy and tiring fall. You will be finding more of my plans as we go along!
Looking forward to Christmastide!
We lit the pink candle on our family Advent wreath tonight. Apparently, my 7-year-old is a bit confused between our traditional Christian observations of Advent and our Waldorf observations of Advent. I asked him if he knew why tonight’s candle was pink rather than purple. His hesitant response? “Because the animals are pink on the inside?”
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