Old Sweetwater

Old Sweetwater

Friday, December 18, 2009


I did not grow up with Advent.  i "discovered" it one year at a Christian bookstore when i was looking for a way to cope with Christmas after a close relative had done something that ruined the Christmas spirit for our extended family.    That year i learned when participating in Advent, you spend the time before December 25 solemnly waiting and preparing for the celebration of Christ's birth.   My focus was changed from a person (with faults) to the Person of Jesus (faultless).    i fasted.   i cried.   i focused.   i forgave.   That year we set up a nativity and added each figure - saving baby Jesus until Christmas morn.   We didn't buy a live tree until December 24 and then celebrated into January.   It ended up being the most spiritual and fulfilling Christmas i could have imagined.  It saved my sanity.   Has anyone been there? 

Wouldn't this Etsy knitted hat would be so warm as you choose a live tree on Christmas Eve?


Karen said...

What a beautiful story. Thank you.
Merry Christmas!
Hugs and blessings to you and your family,
Ladybug Creek

katie said...

Beautiful post, so happy you were and are able to focus on the reason for the season.

Danielle and Clint said...

It's amazing that something so small can bring you back to reality. I was taught Advent by my grandmother. She had made a clay nativity scene that I use to play with every Christmas Eve, telling the story. Now I own that nativity scene and it always brings me back to the meaning.

kimsound studios said...

Nean, I love the soft glow... it so warm :)

Scientific Housewife said...

Great post! I haven't personally experience Advent but it sounds lovely.

Life At Camellia Cottage said...

Oh, I so understand you! One year at Thanksgiving my brother had done the unthinkable, and the drama, anger and hurt was so thick that my sweet hubby spent money we didn't have to take me to a first class hotel for Thanksgiving weekend, just so I could avoid the drama! (Is it any wonder I love him so???)

I hate 'drama', you know, the kind where no one can just love one another and not jab and poke and make fun and mistreat one another. Where old hurts have festered and become ammunition for hurting everyone around. That kind of oozing, bloody stuff. Anyway.

This year my dad passed away, and we haven't had Christmas together as a family in a number of years. I mean all of us, Mama, brother, nephews, hubby and me. And it's Mama's greatest wish to have Christmas at her house, and be good. I always try to be good, but she knows that at the first hint of the drama, hubby and I are grabbing our food and coming home, our 'drama free zone'.

Last year we chose to stay home for a drama free Christmas, and it was wonderful. Only time will tell what this year's festivities hold!

I hope you have a wonderful Christmas! Becky

Pondside said...

What you've written is so true. In today's world we think of Advent as one big shopping/partying/decorating extravaganza. We seem to forget what the preparation is all about - it's as though the preparation is the celebration, and people are quick to strip the house by January 1st. We don't decorate the tree until the 24th, and leave everything up through January 6th or longer.
Lovely post - thanks!

Suz said...

I grew up with Advent..
it is a time of preparation
of retelling the story
preparing our hearts
for the greatest gift
I love the advent wreath
I have one my dad made

Primitiques 'n Poetry said...

Thank you for sharing your beautiful story. And yes. I am loving that hat! ~Mindy

Tracey said...

I am Catholic, so we have always spent Christmas celebrating Advent. Your story is very touching and I am so glad that you found comfort during a difficult time by focusing on the beautiful season of Advent!!

Blessings to you Janean ~

:) Tracey

The Gough Inn said...

Merry Christmas -- I am slowing down and taking it simple this Christmas time and remembering new friends such as yourself... love you blog --

Feelings said...

What a wonderful tree, I love it!!!

Thank you for always sharing your storys , they are really wonderful to read...

I must say, it´s a different kind of way to celebrate advent, in a good way.

I´m wrapping presents at this moment, but desided to take a break.

Hope you´ll have wonderful weekend.


Olivia and Me said...

Hello and thank you for stopping by my blog.

After spending some time in your blog, I have become a follower.

Your heart leads the path you walk on an sharing your path helps me to stay focused.

Merry Christmas and blessed be a joyful season!


Emom said...

Oh thank you! and thank you for your comments...you must have experienced something similar to my last few days...smiles.

Julie@beingRUBY said...

Hi Janean
Thanks for stopping by.....my work life has been hectic and now i have stopped I'm going to try and catch up on visiting other blogs.. and enjoy xmas!!!

I'm sure I have seen your lovely blog many 'moons' ago... but must of lost the directions... he he.. I'm going to follow now so I can come back and view all these lovely xmas posts... which I am sure will give me back my xmas spirit....Julie

PS I think I have no chance of getting a tree until just before xmas so I will follow your lead and enjoy it during January!


Thank you for sharing a sweet and very meaningful post. Such a warm and reflective season. ~ Angela

SisterBrendy said...

Janeen, how I needed to hear your words on my last blog post! Although I've shared that story with a few people over the years, I felt kind of naked laying my feelings out there like that. I've not even told my family about it being on my blog.....wonder why?But I'm soooo grateful for your feedback and God must have sent you to my blog, knowing that my spirit needed lifted by your encouraging words. I felt like he was guiding me to write it, so hopefully it may end up helping someone...in some way. I LOVE your blog! Without knowing about Advent, I think that is what my soul has been doing all on it's own this year. It's been a very reflective Christmas season for me and I have found myself thinking much about the reason for the season! I'll be back often!

Susie from Bienvenue said...

Oh my sweet friend...I have been there! You just stay focused on the reason for the season just like you did..thanks for sharing~

Pansy Cottage Girl said...

Hello~ so nice to meet you. Thank you for your sweet comments on my blog. I new I liked you when I read the subtitle to your blog "a place to breathe". Boy do I neeed to do that! Have a blessed day. I'll be back to visit.

Amy said...

HI Janean, thanks for stopping by my blog! I know my little man will HATE me when he gets older for all the exploiting I do of him on my blog haha.

Your post was beautiful and so uplifting. Isn't wonderful to know the true meaning of the season!

May God bless you and your family this Christmas!

Amy Miraflor

Debra @ Common Ground said...

Hi Janean, what a wonderful heartfelt post. We should all do this, celebrate Advent. Maybe we wouldn't all be so stressed and crazy this time of year.
Hugs and blessings, so glad I found you this year!(Maybe I ought to thank Miss Bruseke!)