In 2016 the U.S. National Parks Service celebrated its 100th birthday and in November of the same year my nephew celebrated his 1st! His parents are outdoorsy sorts of folk. The kind who will spend a week camping whilst pregnant and convince their naive six month pregnant sister to do the same. So, a National Parks Service themed birthday was fitting for their little ranger in training. The waffle iron was ket hot all morning serving brunch to hungry "campers." Partygoers explored the yard, challenged to "spot the bird's nest with binoculars" (hidden in a tree) and "find squirrel's stash" (a pile of acorns) as a part of a scavenger hunt. Kids laughed and danced along with a clever puppet show starring Herbie, a young possum on his journey to give a birthday gift to Levi. We devoured delicious s'more cakes and cupcakes and heard rumors of them being the best cupcakes ever tasted! As friends departed they took home a little bag with a medley of gummies, chocolates, and savory snacks from the trail mix bar. Such a fun way to celebrate our little Ranger Levi!
The start of the Christmas season in Sweden is December 13th: Saint Lucia’s Day.
On this morning, a family’s eldest daughter dons herself as Saint Lucia in white gown, red sash, and lighted candle crown, and awakens her family with traditional song, warm drink, Lussekatter (saffron buns), and ginger biscuits.
The holiday festivities, occurring during one of Scandinavia’s darkest days of the year, symbolize the true hope and light that Christ brings to a dark world at Christmas.
Legend has it that Saint Lucia (or Saint Lucy), who lived in Sicily around 300 AD, bravely brought sustenance to persecuted Christians hiding in catacombs during the terror of Roman Emperor Diocletian. Hands full, she fashioned a crown of candles on her head to light her way through the dark underground.
Last year my sisters, mother, and I took joy in fashioning a festive little St. Lucia's Day brunch photo inspiration for the Lala. I thought it only fitting to share the photos in this space today: St. Lucia's Day!