Friday, February 13, 2015

Candlemas and St Brigid Celebrations

As it happens most years for us the start of our formal learning after the Summer break happens around the time of the feast days of Candlemas and St Brigid.
This year proved to be no different for us except we had an interesting start with our Vellvin being lain up after a fall from a car and her injuries resulting from that.

This made our  start to the new year of formal learning  a little more complicated due to the trips to hospital and doctor appointments, x-rays etc as well as her care impeding our ability to follow any schedule at all to start with.

We seem to have come around though and although I haven't in the past year especially had much chance to actually share the feast days we have celebrated I am hoping to do so this year.
For we have continued to do this I just have not had time to document them.
 So we celebrated both Candlemas/The Presentation of Our Lord and St Brigid together, and not on either of those feast days but a day or two late.

Naturally we had to have a St Brigid Day display and we used our background and candle from pat years as well as our cows from various children.
 I knew we were going to have candles, of course we usually do, but this year I wanted to try them floating in water with the doves that symbolise the gifts that Mary and Joseph offered at the presentation of Jesus in the Temple around the bowl of lighted candles.
I really was happy with the result and the children loved them.
 Traditionally we do lots of colouring and word searches as I read aloud from our books and this year was no exception.
I did find a couple of new pages that I loved, but can't find the link to now sorry.
 Candlemas colouring are much harder to find but I was happy with these ones.

All the work is placed in the children's lesson books as a token of what we have learned for the days.
We consider Faith based learning a number one priority and so will 'ditch' the prepared daily plan in favour of Feast Day activities.
 I printed out this blessing for copy work. Although it is really hard to pick just one Irish blessing as they are all so wonderful.
 Naturally I could not find our copy of Brigid's Cloak this year but did read from St Brigid and the Cow's and Saint's Lives and Illuminations (St Brigid is a featured saint in this lovely book)
 After this we moved on to Candle making.
This year instead of making a whole heap of rolled candles for what ever purpose.
I proposed we each make one candle and use that as a special Birthday Candle to be lit in our Birthday Ring for each of us.
 Of course we read from the  New Catholic Picture Bible and then took turns rolling our candle and cutting out small decorations to put on the candles.
So we each have an individual and unique candle for our birthday celebrations.
 It is so lovely to see how the children really love to be part of the craft making for these days and we just love making candles.
 The small decorations we cut out with fondant cutters I had bought a little while ago. I think they were about $5 at K-mart :)
 For dinner we had a traditional soup/stew meal that we tend t eat regularly but always on St Brigid or St Patrick day.
It must be the Irish blood in us!!!!
 This feast day would not be complete without Irish Soda bread again a staple in our home and a recipe we love to use on a regular basis for our Irish Saints.
Last but not least we had a candle cake for sweets as the finale for  this double  Feast Day.
I am thankful for the help of our children always for these feast day celebrations.

Long gone are the days when I had only little children and I did all the preparations myself. These days I have lots of older helpers to prepare food and crafts if I need it, and really I think that is how it should be.

As they get older they can take a more active part in living our Liturgical Year and thus truly make celebrations of Feast Days a memory that now becomes a reality of living!

Blessings to you and your homes,

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