In fact advent has come and nearly finishing the first part of advent today. Tomorrow starts with O Antiphons. We lit the first candle of advent and Annu made an advent wreath with some pines, hollies and cones which were collected over autumn.We tried to light candles in the evening as much we could.
Since advent is a time of preparation not celebration. It was kept to prepare ourselves by tidying their rooms, doing some good works and preparing cards.
I heard many families only start decorating Christmas tree a few days before Christmas only.
Some preparations during advent is to stop watching television and to encourage to do some good things and put an yellow straw for every good deed children do without prompting so that they can prepare a soft manger for Baby Jesus, however they don't get anything like jelly beans during lent. But just been acknowledged and to encourage doing virtues in the first time.
Many feasts fall on advent, it is a tradition to fill shoes on feast of St Nicholas on Dec 6, white decorations on immaculate conception, braids and Mexican food on Our lady of Guadulupe, can put Christmas lights and drive around many houses to see lights on St Lucy's day on 13 th and do some Christmas baking towards the Christmas week.
Since many catholic families got a practice of reading books for their children over the advent till epiphany and a little effort was made on it .
I thought of doing advent calendar and doing some nativity jigzaw with children, unfortunately I couldn't do many things. Many families have a tradition of playing nativity on Christmas day and make some christmas treats during Christmas week (deserts; popcorns, sugar cookies, cakes,florentines).
Jesse tree was the another tradition which were followed since we started our home schooling. This is the custom of decorating hristmas tree with the events leading to the birth of Jesus . This is named from the Isiah 11;1 which says "A shoot will rise up from Jesse...".Jesse tree is decorated with various ornaments telling the story of God from the Old Testament and continues with Abraham, Moses, covenants. and expecting the coming of the promised saviour......It will be decorating from tomorrow and lot of information on Jesse tree is in Loyola press.