The race to December 25th has begun. This year, I choose not to join the race. I choose to slow myself down with a few carefully placed “Advent Speed Bumps” on my road to Bethlehem. I choose to wait with bated breath, to linger with friends, to savor the flavors, to bask in the candlelight, to listen deeply in the silent night. I invite you to do the same. Consider a few of these Advent Speed Bumps that might help you to slow down and keep Christ’s peace at the heart of your journey toward Christmas.
Light candles: ‘Tis the season of dwindling daylight. Light up the darkness with candles anywhere and everywhere – you can even use the battery kind if you are worried about safety. Have a candlelight breakfast, light advent candles all week long, take a picture of a candle and use it as a screen saver on your phone or computer. Fill your day with the warm glow of candlelight.
Procrastinate: Give yourself permission to send your yearly greetings AFTER Christmas. Groundhogs Day, Valentine’s Day or even Easter greetings can be a lovely surprise to family & friends. This “new tradition” can help you to savor the process without the pressure of a self-imposed deadline.
Give alternative Christmas gifts: Rather than spending hours on-line or in-line, consider giving a charitable gift in honor of someone you love. Research a cause or topic that is meaningful to that person and make a donation in their name.
Read Christmas stories: Whether you have young children or not, pull out some favorite Christmas storybooks and read them aloud. Read slowly, gaze at the beautiful illustrations and reclaim a bit of childhood wonder along the way.