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the week of being still

When I was in college I remember learning about a tradition they had at the Taos Indian Pueblo in Taos, New Mexico. At the end of every year, they close the pueblo to tourists and have what they call "The Time of Being Still". I love the idea of setting aside some time to just be still. And so at the start of this busy and sometimes rushed holiday season we are having our own family "Week of Being Still".

This is one of those traditions that is still being formed in my head, but so far it's been nice. We're trying not to do too many things outside the house this week. We're spending time each evening talking about Christmas and why we celebrate, and we're slowly pulling out the decorations piece by piece. First the advent calendar, then the Christmas tree, then the lights and the ornaments. We're reading about Mary and Joseph and listening to quiet carols and having dinner by candlelight (which is a big hit with the kids).

We still have to buy and wrap and mail a few gifts, and bring goodies to the neighbors, and write a long list of Christmas cards.. but we'll start all that hustle and bustle next week. This week we're being still.

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Reader Comments (28)

I really adore the Advent Calendar, did you make it yourself?

12.1.2009 | Unregistered CommenterMara

I love the being still week we all need that during the holiday rush.
When my three were small, we did an advent candle & reading at the dinner table each evening. Your post brought back a flood of wonderful memories, Thanks!

12.1.2009 | Unregistered Commenterdeze

Wow, I really like that idea. I hope I can incorporate into my december traditions eventually!

12.1.2009 | Unregistered CommenterAnna

Oh, I love that tradition. I think I'll start that with my own family.

12.1.2009 | Unregistered Commentererin

what a sweet concept and post. happy holidays.

12.1.2009 | Unregistered Commenterrobin

What a beautiful idea.

12.1.2009 | Unregistered CommenterJanssen

Excellent tradition.
I second the request for more info about the advent calendar. Im searching for one that is as special as the one I had growing up - and yours comes close.

12.1.2009 | Unregistered CommenterLauren

i love, love, love this idea!

I can't believe I've been "checking in" with your blog for over a year now! I knew immediately once I saw your picture of the advent calendar... I remember it from last Christmas! I have loved your ideas... I took my three girls to the big orange balloon this summer after reading James and the Giant Peach. And recently, I added that ADORABLE card catalog to my own Christmas list. This is another fabulous idea. We try to "be still" each Sunday, and limit it just to family bike rides, etc... I love the idea of trying it for a week during this busy season. Thank you for the inspiration!

12.1.2009 | Unregistered Commentersheri

I could really use a week of still. That sounds FABULOUS.

12.1.2009 | Unregistered Commenterbedelia

Beautiful idea. I think the wording "Be still and know that I am God" is intentional. Stillness begets so many meaningful things. (but it's so hard to slow down!) Love the idea of a purposefully still week, especially at this time of year.

Thanks for this, Brooke.

12.1.2009 | Unregistered CommenterBloom

This goes a bit against the "Be Still" message that you are sharing, but I hope you won't mind. I would love to know how you handle presents. You mention buying "a few." Is your list very streamlined? What do you do for your children to make Christmas special, yet not over-the-top? Do you make presents? Are there certain types of toys or books that you can endorse?

12.1.2009 | Unregistered CommenterGenevieve

That is such a brilliant idea. I love it. Think the dinner by candlelight would be a nice tradition to start up too actually.

12.2.2009 | Unregistered CommenterPetit Filoux

This is a refreshing thought.

Thank you!


Sounds like a wonderful way to prepare for Christmas. I love the fact that we don't have the tradition of exhcanging presents at Christmas , I think that way we are able to focus a lot more on the original meaning, instead of having to run around thinking about what to give eachother. Or at least, I think it would have that effect on me. I am in such a mood right now, since we are celebrating Sinterklaas december 5th. That's when we exchange presents here and oh my, I realize now that that's only 3 more days! I've got to go, I have some present hunting to do! :-D

12.2.2009 | Unregistered CommenterKarin

thank you for the reminder -- this time of year it is easy to get caught up in it all and forget the peace that comes from being still....

and...LOVED your advent calendar so much last year that I made one of my own this year. did not get to the felt ornaments -- maybe next year, but did find cute mini ornaments at Michaels that will work for this year. thank you for the inspiration -- i love my new decoration and my kids are having a ball decorating the tree.

12.2.2009 | Unregistered CommenterHeatherC


12.2.2009 | Unregistered CommenterTania

What a GREAT idea. Maybe my family can incorporate that tradition the week of Christmas. Love it. Thanks for sharing.

12.2.2009 | Unregistered CommenterKelly Rinehart

thanks for the great idea. i loved it and hope to employ in my home! merry christmas!

12.2.2009 | Unregistered Commenternoelle

I love this idea. I just did a post about finding stillness this month. I am right there with you, though my stillness may only be 5 min here or there all month long! Your week of stillness is brilliant!

my post:

12.2.2009 | Unregistered Commenterali

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