Thursday, 21 November 2013

DIY advent candle holder...

Where does the time go....we are almost in December already, and Advent time is almost upon us.
The word advent comes from the Latin "adventus", meaning arrival or coming...and that probably sums up, for most of us what this time is about, religious or not.
Of course this is traditionally is a Christian count-down to the celebration of the birth of Christ, but personally, and I'm sure there is a lot of people that will sentiment this, advent is a time spent preparing to embrace the spirit of Christmas, creating a cheerful and joyful atmosphere...

Advent time starts on the 4th Sunday before the 25th December, which marks the beginning of the church calendar. In many countries, including Norway, each Sunday of advent is marked by lighting a purple candle, purple because this colour symbolizes anticipation and preparation...
In Norway the lighting of each candle is accompanied by verses of the advent song , and is a wonderful ritual to get that glow of anticipation into children's eyes...

As we didn't own a candleholder suitable for the advent candles, I quickly whipped one up out of a piece of old driftwood that I brought back from Norway this summer:

 

I simply drilled 4 holes into the wood, just big enough to fit the candles into...

 

Then I added these numeric tags (IKEA) to each candle, using a bit of gold ribbon...



...simple...


Although Advent is a Christian celebration , a lot of the traditions associated with this time of the year is rooted in the old pagan rituals, especially in the Scandinavian countries:
In ancient times, what we now call Christmas was a mid winter sacrificial feast to celebrate the festival of light....and still to this date, bringing light into the darkness of winter is an essential part of Advent in Norway: People place 7-armed candelabras or hang lighted stars in their windows.
Where I come from, a small coastal village on the west coast of Norway, this is especially important, as fishermen would use these lights as guides home in the darkness..
I will do another post next week about adding some light into your winter d├ęcor.

So, for me, Advent is the time we all spend preparing for Christmas: Making decorations, wrapping presents baking cookies and cleaning the house.
In Norway it is tradition to bake 7 different sorts of cookies and there are also traditions such as St. Lucia day (13th December)...but more on this later...

Most importantly, Advent is a time to reflect on the humanity and compassion in this world...to fill your heart with joy and wonder, and get the childish glow of Christmas back in your vary eyes...

xxx
June
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