The Shortest Day

The shortest day flew by yesterday with many preparations for our solstice party. Our preparations were accompanied by a massive snowstorm so the girls alternated between sledding with ski goggles and cooking.


We made invitations....I haven't had glitter in the house in a long time. Now I remember why--it got everywhere!

By mid-day we realized that our party was going to be just the neighbors as everyone was snowed in. We couldn't even get out to deliver the invitations!

We made star and moon cookies.


Hels made a buche de noel decorated with marzipan stars. We pulled out the Solstice Berries to accompany it.


Our neighbors braved the storm....well....one family did. We had an evening of visiting, sledding in candlelight, dark chocolate with summer berries, and candles.


The girls set lanterns up and down the sled run and went sledding in the dark. It was so nasty outside that the adults declined to join them this year. Here's a photo of all the lanterns after they had finished.


The highlight of the evening was the yule log which is an idea I got from the Crafty Crow. In the past we've done this activity out at a bonfire but not this year! We each had a long strip of paper where we could write down one wish for the turning of the year or one thing we wanted to cast away.

The girls then decorated a log with greens, dried orange peels and cinnamon sticks. I had wanted to use a big birch log, but they were buried in snow. They tied on the scrolls of paper and we put it in the fire. By having the leftover greens from the Christmas tree tied to the log, there was a very satisfying pop and crackle in the fire.


We revel in darkness and light at this time of year. The spiral is moving more and more inward. May we all find a special light inside. Happy Solstice.


For more ideas about games and activities involving fire and light--check out this post--we alternate these activities for New Years Eve and Twelfth Night.

ilse  – (December 22, 2008 at 6:41 AM)  

Happy solstice for you too.

And yes those strawberries were just delicous.

i got that idea last year from your blog, and I writed it down in my notebook. My kids intend to continue this and so do I it is just wonderfull

Merry christmas for you all.

amanda o  – (December 22, 2008 at 8:10 AM)  

sounds like a great way to celebrate

MamaAngel  – (December 22, 2008 at 8:12 AM)  

Happy Solstice to you! Everything looks so lovely, it is really cool to see how holidays progress with older children in the picture. We didn't get a chance to do the Yule log this year but I am going to put it on my list!

Dawn  – (December 22, 2008 at 10:21 AM)  

I love that tradition you have with the summer berries. I'm going to try that this year. Happy Solstice!

Yarrow  – (December 22, 2008 at 11:37 AM)  

Happy Solstice! What a beautiful day you must have had. Thank you for sharing your traditions and memories. Blessings to you and yours.

Linda  – (December 22, 2008 at 1:50 PM)  

Happy Solstice to you. Your preparations look beautiful! We have just celebrated our Summer Solstice down here in South Africa. It looks like you had a fantastic celebration!

anthromama  – (December 22, 2008 at 2:34 PM)  

My husband hates glitter for that reason! I think of it as fairy dust, and then I don't mind.

Sounds like you had a nice, cozy time. I'm impressed about the buche de noel...I've always wanted to make one.

Nicole  – (December 22, 2008 at 4:24 PM)  

What wonderful traditions you have!
We celebrated with our neighbors too! sledding, pancakes for lunch, homemade beeswax candles and salt dough sun and moon ornaments for the tree!

denise  – (December 22, 2008 at 4:32 PM)  

Sounds like a lovely solstice. SO much snow this year so for for everyone, it seems.

Happy Solstice! :)

RunninL8  – (December 22, 2008 at 6:38 PM)  

What a great solstice you had!!! I love the idea of writing down a wish for the new year and burning them on the yule log! We always decorate a yule log on Solstice and then burn it on x-mas morning. From now on we'll take on your tradition!
The sledding sounded like a blast!
Happy belated solstice to you!

sarah p  – (December 22, 2008 at 6:44 PM)  

What a wonderful, magical evening. I'm sorry your party was depleted by the conditions, but it sounds like you had a great time anyway.

Amy VG  – (December 23, 2008 at 10:38 AM)  

Just lovely!
Thank you for sharing!

Teaching Handwork  – (December 28, 2008 at 8:10 PM)  

that snow looks heavenly! I made a felted advent piece....inspired by your blog!!!! I gave it to the my daughters kinder class....so cute!

Cathy  – (December 21, 2009 at 10:56 AM)  

Happy Solstice to you! We have been marking the day making wishes around a Yule Log cake. http://nurturestore.co.uk/celebrate-solstice-make-a-yule-log

Pink & Green Mama  – (December 21, 2009 at 8:45 PM)  

So lovely and happy solstice to you. I wish we had a working fireplace so we could make a lovely orange-peel-y yule log!

fondly,
pink and green mama

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