Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Christkindl, Countdowns and other Traditions........

Well, well, fast this Advent is going. Tomorrow is the Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe and I was worried I would not have anything interesting to share with you all here that is different from other years.

However although I have plenty to share time  to do that seems to be in short supply. So I am only now sharing a tradition that I may have talked about in passing   that we do each year but really never explained.
That of  'The Christkindl....'

Each year at the start of advent, usually on St Andrew's feast day we not only start our St Andrew Novena but we also draw our Christkindl from a bowl.
We have been doing this for many years  and started this I guess 14 years ago when introduced to it by a friend who had a European background.  Although I am sure that this friend must have had a copy of  'Around the Year with the Trapp Family' as some of the other traditions we started seem to be from that book. Incidentally I printed mine about the same time, from here as it is out of print

We each put our names into the bowl and draw out the name of another person for whom we become ' The Christkindl.'
We have older people sometimes join up with little one, for example Trahaearn and I are a team, or have 'older reminders' for those younger children who may need just that little helping hand.

So what do we do?
We write little notes to our selected person, do special things for them like their assigned jobs or spending time with that person, pray for them and let them know, make small gifts for the person ( paper, glitter, old cards, etc all work well) and leave them on their bed for them to find. If we have small gifts of lollies or gold coins these can be given too.

As it  can be difficult to be anonymous  it is not uncommon for a smaller child to get an older one to write something so as to disguise who the note may be from.'

At the end of Advent and after Christmas morning and all the excitement we tell each other who our Christkindl was, along with the Saint we had been reading and learning about

Of course just like the Trapp family we also have differing  reactions during this period and when we drew the names this year I heard expressed such sentiments as" I hope I get a good Christkindl this year, not like last year' and ' I want a good Christkindle like ...... had before'

One of the other traditions that we do is to choose a saint to read about during Advent and try to emulate. WE cover the book so no one else can see the book and then we see if people can guess who our saint is after Christmas by telling about the saint. This sometimes works for us and sometimes not.

However reading the saint book or if necessary a missionary or great godly man or woman is of great spiritual value in this preparation period too.
We naturally have the placing of straw in the manger to build a soft bed for baby Jesus on Christmas morning and this is done by many small sacrifices and prayers as well as good deeds for others.

I must admit that this is one of my favourite traditions as it seems such a wonderful way to show our love for the Christ Child.

WE have been working on the few Advent countdowns we have in our home this year and some days are better than others with doing these. We do find that sometimes the little children are so tired by the end of the day that we can forget to do the countdown and need to catch up the next day.

Last but not least we have been reading Batholomew's Passage this year and it is interesting to hear the little peoples reactions to a story that has been read over many years along with Tabitha's Travels and Jotham's Journey.

We have not started our other read alouds yet but hope to after the next two feast days.
Oh and by the way the Christmas Rose Novena starts tomorrow too.

I pray your lent has been a productive one so far in preparing your hearts for the coming of our Saviour on Christmas Day.

Blessings to you and your homes,

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