Monday, December 1, 2008

The Jesse Tree (Our Christmas Kickoff)

We had a wonderful Christmas kickoff weekend.

I have been too stuffed with Turkey and pie to make it to the computer. Big D makes our Thanksgiving dinner every year and does a delicious job. This year he out did himself. Everything was so good that I didn’t mind eating it for the past four days.

You know the holidays have started when it is perfectly normal to eat pie for breakfast.

My side of the family had an early Christmas party on Saturday. My aunt hosted and it was a great way to kickoff Christmas and get everyone in the spirit. There was food, drinks, more food, games, and a lot of love and laughter.

Bid D, the kids, and I started off the Advent season on Sunday by cranking up the Christmas music and decorating our Christmas tree.

This is the first year that we are including a Jesse Tree into our Christmas tradition. On Sunday Big D blessed the tree, we said prayers, and the kids hung the first ornament. Having the Jesse Tree along with the traditional Christmas tree helps us to stay focused on what we are preparing for as we wait for Christmas to arrive.

The Jesse Tree is named from Isaiah 11:1: "A shoot will spring forth from the stump of Jesse, and a branch out of his roots." It is a vehicle to tell the Story of God in the Old Testament, and to connect the Advent Season with the faithfulness of God across 4,000 years of history. The Branch is a biblical sign of newness out of discouragement, which became a way to talk about the expected messiah (e.g., Jer 23:5). It is therefore an appropriate symbol of Jesus the Christ, who is the revelation of the grace and faithfulness of God.

You can find many ways to make a Jesse tree on the Internet. For the symbols of the Jesse tree, Prayers, and Bible readings, we used the site called Catholic Culture.

Here is our Jesse Tree with our first ornament, a leaf, to signify the branch that will shoot forth and bring to us the Messiah.

One of my favorite Christmas decorations is my nativity. A lady on ebay made these dolls and I was lucky to be the one to purchase them. They are so sweet and well made. I think this is a cute representation of the holy family.

I hope your Thanksgiving was a good one.

Lets open our hearts this Advent season and make a place for our Lord to enter.

Happy Christmas Kickoff

God bless

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