Posted by: christinelaennec | November 29, 2010

The start of Advent

It’s hard to believe, but yesterday was the first Sunday in Advent.  I particularly enjoyed going out in the evening, through the snow, to the church:   the short service ended with us all singing while holding lit candles in the dark sanctuary.  I love the season of Advent, the waiting – though not fasting in my case! – and preparation.  I love to contemplate the mind-blowing idea of divinity choosing to come to earth in the form of a tiny, helpless baby.

We don’t normally decorate for Christmas before December, but with our family schedules being fairly insane over the next few weeks, yesterday afternoon was the best time.  The Dafter always enjoys setting up her Playmobil nativity set, but this year she decided to do two nativities:  traditional and modern.

For 2010, two nativity scenes

In the traditional scene, the Dafter decided that Mary would have to be lying down, since she’d just had a baby:

The Three Wise Men come to visit Jesus in the manger (lying on the straw next to Mary, who is lying on a bench). An angel looks on from above.

In the modern nativity scene, Mary and Joseph seem to have found a room at the Travelodge, where they have visitors as well as lots of important baby gear (no flat-screen t.v. though):

Modern nativity: Mary is sitting comfortably, Jesus has a teddy bear, and the visitors include a dalmation and a labrador.

Today there was no school, because with stunning foresight the City Council had decreed today and tomorrow to be in-service days.  This was just as well, as we got another few inches of snow:

Let it snow... a simple but effective Christmas decoration made by the Dafter at school last year.

We’d planned for the Dafter and some friends who live about two miles away to play together today.  Did the snow deter us?  Not a bit!  One mother walked the girls here, and we walked them back!  I think we will all sleep well tonight.



  1. Yessss … we also had snow today !!!
    BTW may I ask what the word dafter means? I have looked for it but coulgn’t find it and I read the word so often here.
    Love the scenes that are created !!

    • Dear Carin,
      The answer to the Dafter riddle is on my About page – sorry to puzzle you! The word “daft” means slightly crazy, but in a nice way. In Scotland it’s often used affectionately: “Don’t be so daft!”. “Dafter” would be the comparative, meaning “more daft”. When my daughter was learning to read, she learned the word “laughter”. Then she pointed to the word “daughter” and very logically said, “and that says Dafter”. So that’s why I’ve nicknamed her The Dafter in this blog.

      I hope that makes sense! Thanks so much for reading. I’m so pleased you finally got some snow. There’s more falling here as I write.

  2. Thanks for explaining. Now I complete understand !!

  3. That’s really surprising that you’re writing about Advent:). Nice scenes:).

  4. I love your daughter’s Nativity scenes – they are just brilliant! I am very suprised she was at school today – I thought you were getting the brunt of it there (as usual) I have been feeling very mindful of Advent this year – it is indeed a ‘mind-blowing’ thought.
    Birthday blessings to your sister. What strength she has to come through such a time. xx

  5. Dear lidiako and Jacqui,
    Thanks for stopping by! I’m glad that you liked the Nativity scenes, Jacqui. Yes, we are a bit surprised that the school hasn’t closed, given that the snow there comes up to our knees. (And I was relieved you agree it’s a mind-blowing thought – I worry about sounding preachy or theologically certain, which I am not!) Thank you also very much for your “birthday blessings” for Sarah.

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