The savoring of the greens

Posted on January 10, 2012 | 0 Comments

The putting away of Christmas is a thoughtful time - the extended family has returned to their respective homes and we settle down to embracing the work of 2012.  As the ornaments are removed and the tree finds a new home on the edge of the yard, we once again reminisce each ornament's history and receive pleasure in knowing that the tree returns to being shelter for the birds.  Somehow, even in retirement, we establish new traditions.  This year, for the first time, it was the family botanist who placed the greens, tucking them in here and there around our home.  They are so artfully placed it is difficult to want to remove them, even with the thought of saying goodbye to the holiday and enjoying the process of "sweeping clean" for the New Year.  

We were ever so pleased to have been researching Candlemas, and to have found a reference to the fact that Candlemas, February 2nd, is not only a Christian commemoration of the presentation of Jesus at the Temple, a festival of lights celebrating the half-way point between the winter solstice and the spring equinox (in particular the strengthening of the life-giving force of the sun), but also a designated day for the putting away of the greens of Christmas.  

And thus we shall wait.  We shall savor the continuing presence of the greens. We do admit that one of the happiest parts of Christmas is bringing the tree into the house--we often reflect as it happens that we don't actually need lights and decorations, that just having the tree inside is perfection, in fact one large perfection in a series of holiday perfections that make the season so meaningful.   Now we have something new to look forward to, adding this tradition plus a small celebration of Candlemas on February 2nd.  Life is good!


Posted in About Us

Three Kings Day - Epiphany - January 6 - Santons

Posted on January 06, 2012 | 0 Comments

Epiphany, the twelfth and final day of Christmas, the day of the Three Kings (the Wise Men or Magi - Caspar, Melchior, and Balthasar) rests on January 6th in the Western world.   It is on the twelfth day of Christmas that the Three Kings reach Jesus in Bethlehem.  January 6th commemorates the coming of the Magi and the presence of Christ in the world.

In the world of Santons, the coming of Mary and Joseph to the Stable, the arrival of Jesus, and then the arrival of the Three Kings are all celebrated.  The Carbonel Santons workshop offers distinct figures for the advent of Mary and Joseph in their Size #2, Elite Santons.


When the nativity is set-up in a family's home they first place Advent Mary and Joseph at a distinct distance from the stable and move them closer day by day.



 On Christmas Eve the Advent Set is put away and the Kneeling Mary and Joseph are placed in the creche.


Christmas morning, of course, the Christ Child arrives.



And then the three Kings commence their journey, beginning in a spot distant from the creche, and then as with Advent Mary and Joseph, move a little bit closer each day,  finally arriving in Bethlehem at the stable on January 6 to rejoice in Christ's birth.


Posted in Carbonel Santons, Provence Christmas

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