A Note from the Fridge ...
Poetry Friday: Happy Birthday, Earlybird!

Lovely Light on St. Lucia's Day

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And just guess who these three little star boys might be?

If you read my blog last Advent, then you may recall that on the Feast of St. Lucia, we celebrated with orange buns and cone hats for the boys. This is a beautiful Swedish holiday ~ a lovely celebration of light at the darkest time of year. (You can learn more at this charming site here.)

Well, this morning a trio of starry-capped fellows appeared unexpectedly on our Christmas mantel. They were a surprise for the boys, and of course the candles glowing on the mantel at 6 a.m. drew their attention immediately!

I had made the star boys (or stjarngossar) late yesterday afternoon, and they were lickety-split quick to fix up. Just tiny wooden peg doll figures, painted pure white for the base and flesh-pink for the top. A bit of black pen added angelic faces and mere scraps of construction paper were curled into cone shapes to fit each little head. At the very tip of each hat, I placed a glittering star sticker. (Quick craft alert: These could be made into angels or carolers or even fairies just as easily!)

The next thing that caught their attention was the sweet fragrance of orange and cranberry in the air. Sure enough, I had a loaf bread in the oven ...

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The recipe came from here, and it's a good one - but even better with a light dusting of powdered sugar and just a dab of butter. ;)

I also made up a pot of Glogg to take with us to Nature Club today. Glogg is a Swedish drink for the coldest nights of the year ... a hot mulled wine by tradition, but obviously I didn't use wine. (Though that would be nice some night for just Bill and me!) Instead I steeped cranberry juice in mulling spices all morning and by the time we were leaving, it was ready to go - and the house smelled like a country store at Christmas. (Do you know what I mean? That welcoming, spicy warm smell? Mmm, just like Vermont.)

So we did get off to Nature Club at last, and while there, I took lots of pictures. I'll post those tomorrow, but let me just say that though our meeting was brief (the storm hit!), it was wonderful. We learned about the winter solstice, we listened to an Odds Bodkins story, we ate solstice cupcakes and we took a nature walk together through the snowy woods ...

Best of all perhaps, was the candle-lighting ceremony. As we passed around a candle with which to light our own little votives - our lights began to glow and the snow began to fall as if on cue. It surely felt as if Winter had begun ...

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I have to tell you though, it was a bit of a challenge to keep the "calm in my heart" on that drive home from Nature Club today! Goodness, the roads were terrible and the snow was coming down like crazy. But I just popped in a quiet tape of carols, sipped my glogg and whispered a prayer for our safe return home. :)

Now it's late afternoon and our home is surrounded by that lovely winter light that only a snowstorm affords. We have a Swedish book to read this evening - The Tomten and the Fox (if ever there was a quiet book, this is it) or perhaps an Elsa Beskow book or two. I love all her books, but I think Ollie's Ski Trip will do nicely for today. (Fyi, Earlybird is receiving The Sun Egg tomorrow for his birthday! I can't wait to read it, lol!)

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A snowy, candle-lit afternoon; here's that quiet at last ...

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