Many of you reading are from a broad range of faiths (or no faith). And a subset of you have various ways of regarding Jesus and the Bible–be it sacred or spiritual or support. My own family is Quaker and most people look at us as Bible-based, Jesus-following Buddhists (although they don’t generally know enough about Buddhism to know that we are more aligned with Christianity than Buddhism).
I had the opportunity to do a guest blog for a friend of mine on her series about Advent. I chose to write about “Life After Christmas” and how we can carry Jesus with us into the New Year. It’s a topic I feel very strongly about:
Our family tries very hard to walk the path of Jesus as a lifestyle. We try to carry Christ with us in each step. I am blessed to have a husband who walks with me in this journey and when one of us hesitates to offer love or service, the other is quick to redirect with a gentle “What would you want someone to do if we were in those shoes?”. I had a shirt at one point that said “Live in a way such that people who know you but don’t know Jesus will know Jesus because they know you”. And that’s what we did.
For the rest, you’ll have to click on over to Claire’s blog, Radically Broken and read my post “The Love of Ignorance”. While you’re there, you might as well check out the prior days of December with a cup of tea and an afternoon to think deeply on some of the topics and let them help you mold your coming year. As for myself–I’ll be posting more here soon enough!
Well, we managed to land in our garage at home at about 11:45pm Christmas Eve. Papa was up until about 4am putting out the already-wrapped gifts and trying to fight the effects of the coffee he drank to keep him up while driving.
The children were up promptly at 6am and it went a little something like this… Continue reading Christmas Morning
I should have looked ahead when, on Day 1, I decided to change the “activity” to “Remembrance” because here we are on Day 24 and it is a long-held traditional day of remembrance in many ethnicities and cultures and in many ways.
I don’t think we can remember too much. So I will keep it here as well. Generally, we light candles on this day for those who have passed. Papa’s family used to have a rather overwhelming 7-course dinner of mostly seafood for many years on Christmas Eve and in remembrance of that, I usually find him some octopus salad to eat with our own dinner.
This year, we will be hoping to make it home to our beds before midnight. We won’t rush, but we will try our best.
Let me know how you usually spend Christmas Eve or Nochabuena or whatever your family calls this day. In fact, let me know what you call this day!
There are mostly Nordic, Iceland and Scottish traditions around cleaning at this time–either right before Christmas or right before New Year’s. I chose right before Christmas, and we would be spending the day cleaning so that we could enjoy it for Christmas. It’s supposed to be a cleaning of all things–including the body and mind.
Normally, all of my other holiday preparations are already done and this day is purposefully left open for cleaning a bit deeper than usual. It doesn’t matter to me that we won’t have company for the holiday–this is for me and my family. We all relax better in the uncluttered and unkempt. If I’ve fallen off track with meditating, I will do that. I’m likely to also take a bath and if I feel the need (and can find a place that’s open!) get a haircut. It’s a day to get the laundry caught up and put away, too.
This year, this day will be spent seeing a medical specialist for BigGuy, and so cleaning will have to wait. The appointment will be several hours long and hopefully it won’t include drawing blood because that’s never fun for my BigGuy.
Do a little extra cleaning for yourself today. Maybe just one room that you get all the way down to dusting the baseboards. Let me know how you feel sitting in that room later. ❤
I ache today. Usually, the Solstice is a really special day for us: it’s the day we get our Christmas tree. This year we are on the road and late today we should be headed to New Orleans. But let me tell you about today because it is beautiful… Continue reading Day 22: Winter Solstice (or Yule)
Some years, today is swapped with the 22nd and this would be the Winter Solstice (or “Yule”). But this year the Solstice falls on the 22nd and so today is Children’s Day. This is really more a Shambala Buddhist custom that often includes giving gifts to children. After all, Christmas Day is not a holiday for them. Here is a good account of how one American Buddhist parent recalls Children’s Day growing up.
In our house… Continue reading Day 21: Children’s Day
As you read this, I’m hoping we are en route to Baton Rouge, LA. But we would be otherwise “getting physical”. This means do something WITH your kids that requires physical effort. Maybe you make forts to crawl through in one of your rooms with blankets and towels. Maybe you play with Playdoh. Maybe you build with blocks. Are you noticing that I’m only listing off indoor activities?
Okayokayokay… if you really want to go outside, then go outside. If you have snow, build a snowman. If you have rain, stomp in the puddles. If you have sunshine, play catch or tag or whatever.
But put your body (or some part of it) into it today. Let me know what you did!
As you read this, we are en route to Memphis. But today’s task is to bake something together. Needless to say, that will not be happening for this family.
But I invite you to bake SOMEthing together today. And it’s a weekend day so YOU HAVE TIME! It doesn’t have to be something complicated, either: slice and bake cookies doctored up with some colored sugar or sprinkles are going to be a big hit here so don’t overthink it.
Let me know what you made!
We are mostly a household moved by music. Except Papa. Until just a few years ago he never even listened to the words. *gasp* Today, we will sing songs together. Which songs? Probably not the ones you will sing… Continue reading Day 18: Sing songs together
Talk about Divine Intervention: we have friends coming over! Our friends live in Spain most of the year and come over the U.S. for a few weeks or months for work. Tonight, they are coming over for dinner—yayyyy!!! So why does this activity fall on this day? Continue reading Day 17: Invite people over–kids pick the menu