One tradition often observed on this day is the chalking of the door. The front door of the house is marked with chalk either on the door or over the door with the year and three initials in this format: 20+C+M+B+18.
The letters above the door stand for the initials of the Magi – Caspar, Melchior, Balthazar, and also stands for Christus Mansionem Benedicat, Latin for “May Christ bless this house.”
I made tags with the Publisher program — 10 to a sheet — printed back and front. The tags tell the meaning of the initials on the door and have a blessing on the reverse to recite while marking the door.
I purchased some simple white chalk — 16 pieces for 99 cents — and tied on the tags with black and white string.
I hope to have a few left over to give to some special friends who are unable to attend the party.
Do you have any special rituals that you follow at your home?
I usually make invitations on Publisher. I chose a custom paper size of a half sheet of letter paper — 5.5 inches by 8.5 inches.
I used a picture of 3 magi and a caravan riding through the desert as the background to fill the entire card. So printing would show clearly on top of the picture I set the transparency at 40%.
I added 3 text boxes with invitation, place, and time. Since most people have been to our home before details like directions are unnecessary. However directions and a map could be printed on the back.
Some invitations are handed out as printed cards, others are sent as emails or texts. Responses are already coming in.
Tonight I had a notion that we should have a get-together early in the New Year.
A couple years ago we had a New Year’s morning party where we served only popovers and beverages. It was a hit and easy to pull off.
But I don’t like to repeat parties exactly the same from previous ones so I looked more closely at the calendar. Actually my first action was to get Charlie and Sug on board. The three of us are a great entertaining team.
So January 6th is Epiphany, the feast day that commemorates the visit of the Magi to the Christ child.
We’re planning to invite people from many different constituencies. Design themes might include stars or camels or gold, frankincense, and myrrh. I’ll try to come up with something.
I also like to find out if there is one special food that is unusual and unique to the event. In Europe Epiphany is often celebrated with galette des rois, or King’s cake. Unlike the king cake used at Mardi Gras, this king’s cake is a puff pastry tart filled with almond creme.
I have less than 3 weeks to get this party planned. I need to put myself in high gear.
I haven’t done much this week — only the bare necessities — because I have a touch of pneumonia.
After seeing my doctor of over thirty years I’m on the mend so we will still have our advent wreath making get-together on Saturday afternoon.
I need to cut a few more greens and do some shopping.
On Saturday morning I’ll make corn chowder and blueberry muffins. I’m planning on tweaking my own recipe for corn chowder. I’m going to try America’s Test Kitchen blueberry muffin recipe for the first time. If it’s great I’ll let you know.