I almost wasn't ready for Advent this year. Technically, I wasn't ready. I only made it by altering the finish line a little to account for current challenging circumstances.
See, I have this big tulip-y pillar candle wreath thing. I like it cause it holds pillar candles, and I like pillar candles because you don't burn through an entire candle during the course of one thirty minute dinner, like tapers. Using 46 – 70 candles each Advent is silly, and I don't think there's much point to the affair if you only light it a few minutes a day, or only on Sundays. So, pillars.
But last year I also got fed up with the 3″ paraffin pillars we were using. They were sold in packs of three, so I always had to buy six. They yellowed abominably over the course of a year, no matter how carefully I stored them, so I couldn't save the leftover ones for the next year. The candles for weeks 3 and 4 never burnt down far, but I couldn't save them either. And they smoked. So I decided last year to pour my own beeswax pillars for next year. I'd been pouring beeswax votives and that was easy enough. Pillars couldn't be much harder.
So I bought a mold. And some wax. And eventually got around to pouring the first candle. It turned out pretty well, although I was a little irked that my mold left an obvious seam.
That was in… September I think. And then I didn't do anything else until the Friday before Advent. Then I got off my rump and bought more wax. Saturday I poured two more candles (plus yet another expedition for wax). Sunday morning, I poured the last candle. Pouring candles, it turns out, is an excellent low energy craft. You prepare the mold and start the wax melting, then take a rest while it melts. You pour your candle, and take another rest. Even a nap. And it doesn't smell at all. If you're sick and just have to make something, I can highly recommend making pillar candles.
But! Somehow, mysteriously, a 3″ pillar that is sold in a store is just a tiny bit smaller than a 3″ pillar that I cast myself. Just enough smaller that the pretty ribbon circlets I made a few years ago didn't fit. And there wasn't enough ease in the seam allowance for them to be let out.
I was lucky enough to match the ribbon color, but instead of making new circlets, I just stuck the ribbons on with sequin pins. If I tried to make new circlets, they wouldn't be ready in time.
I let myself off from braiding the rosemary garland Sunday afternoon, and took a nap instead. (Mass wore me out.) So the stand was naked, but the candles were ready, and I decided that was good enough.
And then the Advent Wreath booklets I went to all that trouble to put together last year were no where to be found.
But we muddled through it all, and GeekBaby is more entranced by the candles each year. He even sat nicely through the Scripture reading and prayers (which is unprecedented). How much he likes the wreath really makes it worth all the fuss.