I made our family an Advent wreath on Sunday. First I gathered some arborvitae from my yard. Any evergreen is good.
I got out my Advent candle holder, a wonderful Swedish one I got at Hearthsong catalog years ago, my three purple and one pink candle, some household string, (green gardener's twine is best because it is easier to hide,) some scissors, and the lining of a summer hanging-basket. I think it is coconut fiber. I used it to pad the candle holder and to retain a little water, to keep the evergreen moist and fresh for as long as possible. You could use straw, raffia, or even newspaper instead of the coconut fiber. You can soak your Advent wreath in the sink from time to time to refresh it during December.
I wrapped the coconut fiber on the candle holder using the string, and tied a knot.
Then I started to place evergreen cuttings on the coconut fiber, wrapping with string after I added each good handful. Try to cover the ends of the cuttings with each new handful as you go around.
The string will be showing after this first time around.
The next time around I tried to hide all the strings and any remaining ends sticking out with more bunches of evergreen. I tucked thick cuttings into the string, and soon I had a nice full wreath.
I added the candles.
We light a purple candle the first Sunday of Advent, two purples the second, add the pink one the third, and the last purple one the fourth Sunday.
We opened our beautiful new Advent calendar, which has a little storybook for each day, telling about the first Christmas.
Then we ate Brunswick Stew by the fire, our Advent wreath close by.
The Advent wreath is rich with symbolism. If you would like to read more about it, here is a good article: http://www.catholiceducation.org/articles/religion/re0132.html Or you can click on the title of this post for the link.