My oratories. One downstairs and one in the schoolroom.
The Saints of Advent. Our Blessed Lady, St. Juan Diego, St. Lucy, Good and Noble St. Joseph, kind St. Nicholas, and even wonderful, hospitable St. Andrew made it in this year.
The O Antiphons drawn for me by Creative Child a few years ago.
The feast of St. Nicholas. Always a happy day, even when everyone is all grown up. My children still love the surprise of a candy laden table in the early morning gleaming with candlelight.
This year I found a true "living book".
THE REAL ST. NICHOLAS.
I remember once reading in Karen Andreola's book, A Charlotte Mason Companion, that one should read books written by someone who is captivated by his subject matter. This is a loving and dedicated anthology of stories from around the world attesting to the aid and the kindness of St. Nicholas. The author's love for St. Nicholas is quite evident.
It is FUNNY and touching, and makes a person think about many things. Youngest Child is reading it for the first time this week...I am not sure where he fell through the cracks not having read this before..but I can hear him chuckling as he reads.
That feeling of transition a Mom gets when she has some children all grown, some semi-grown and off to college, and some still growing at home. It's a mixed up feeling - like a distracted hen who is trying to collect her scattered brood and just can't manage to get them all under her wing settled and safe.
And knowing that someday they will all be flown which is the whole purpose, I suppose. They are not ours, but God's. It's an odd feeling, letting go when for years you needed to be so close, so vigilant, so present all the time. And now they are flown, or longing to fly. How do we have children and hold them tightly and loosely at the same time? It's tricky! Perhaps Our Lady felt this way when she found Jesus in the Temple and knew that the Life of Nazareth was not what He was called to. Nazareth was her calling. And she remained faithful to this quiet, dutiful, simple existence until the end.