Our Christmas here has become a darling mish-mash of German and American traditions all wrapped into my favorite season of the year (despite the weather):
- We enjoy an Advent wreath with candles and we look forward to each Sunday leading up to Christmas when we get to light first one, then two, then three and finally all candles.
- Finnley is excited that he gets his own home-made Advent calendar every year finding treats every one of those 24 days until Christmas in a small bag every morning.
- On the 5th of December we polish our shoes and place them on the porch so St Nikolaus can come and fill them with treat and small presents if we've been good and with coals in case we have been naughty.
- We serve a hearty Chicken soup for lunch on the 24th (my family's tradition) and pizza for dinner on the same day (hubby's family tradition)
- We give a first round of presents on the evening of the 24th (my family's tradition) and find Santa's bounty underneath the tree in the morning of the 25th (hubby's family tradition)
Here at the Gibbons' homestead, Christmas Crafts always start with the Advent wreath. I have long given up keeping a fresh pine wreath alive in this mild weather and use a faux wreath but it looks alright. New white candles, sprays of Ilex and red berries, candy canes for whimsy and green and white ribbon are my staples - nothing beats the classics! I tentatively added a few pine cones but they were too dark, too brown and 'vanished' from sight amidst the dark greenery. Craft paint to the rescue!
A light drizzling of white acrylic paint to simulate snow and voila - much prettier and more visible pine cones! Easy-peasy.
And here they are, in their full glory, as part of our pretty Advent wreath!