First week of Advent. The world is hushed, awaiting the birth of the Christ Child.
Ok, it's not. It's crazy, rushed, and noisy, with lists and lines, and sales. There are plastic reindeer on green lawns, and piped 'Christmas' music everywhere you go. (If songs about chestnuts or lovers coming home can be considered Christmasy)
Still, a feeling of anticipation is building. The urge to prepare is growing stronger: to clean the house, bake cookies,to delve into quiet and prayer.
Every Advent/Christmas season has its own flavour. Some years we (the House of Nuts) go all out with the decorations, the festivities, and the food. In those years, our joy is exuberant, vital.
In other years, the preparation runs deeps and still, well below the surface. The joy is subdued, the mood more reflective.
This year is one of the latter. We are quiet and still in mood this Advent, preparing for a quiet and still Christmas.
I hope these next four weeks will bring moments of peace to you and your family as you make preparations for Christmas.