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E MPLOY E E NE W SL E T T E R D EC E MB E R 2012 It’s Beginning to Feel a Lot Like Christmas UNIVERSIT Y EMPLOYEES SHARE THEIR CHRISTMAS TRADITIONS » Compiled by Spencer Allen After a long day of Christmas and gifts, my wife and I gather our family together to hold our traditional “Jesus Supper.” Because of the commercialization of the season, we try to bring the focus of the holiday back to the Savior. The meal of fish, cheese, nuts, tomatoes with light dressing, and grape juice is brought to life as lights are dimmed and we eat by candlelight. Our kids love it and it has become a highlight of the Christmas season. Kip Harris Dean of Students The Sunday after Thanksgiving our family puts up the Christmas tree. What adds to the excitement of the holiday season are the ornaments we’ve collected from family vacations throughout the years. Each ornament brings back great family memories. We wait until Monday night for Family Home Evening to finish the tree by putting the star on the tree. As the family gathers around, my husband reads the account in the Book of Mormon of Samuel the Lamanite and his prophecy of a new star. We take this opportunity to teach our children about the significance of the star and how it signified the birth of the Savior. At the end of Family Home Evening, we light the star in hopes that our kids understand and appreciate the Christmas star. Trulee Stocking Instructor, Department of English Many of our family traditions stem from my time in Norway as a missionary for the Church. During the Christmas season, my wife makes a kransekake, or a ring cake. It stands at least two feet high and has over 20 layers. It’s shaped like a pyramid with the biggest ring on the bottom and each layer getting smaller. It is finished off with icing and tiny toothpicks with Norwegian flags on them. Our family also holds true to the Norwegian tradition of opening up the Christmas gifts on Christmas Eve. Ward Hicks Instructor, Department of Communication Years ago, our oldest was four and our second child was an infant. My husband and I were both finishing school, and although we could provide for ourselves, extra money was scarce. That Christmas we carefully purchased each of our children one toy. As I was preparing our Christmas Eve meal, there was an unexpected knock at the door. Much to my surprise, the doorway was empty except for two large plastic bags. As I looked closer, I noticed the bags filled to the brim with children’s toys, ingredients for a Christmas meal, and an envelope carefully tucked away with money. We were extremely touched by the generosity of the givers of this gift. Every year since we graduated from school, we have tried to do to others what someone did for us. Each year during the holiday season my kids ask if Santa Claus is real. And although he is a fictional character to some, that one year he was real to us. Bonnie Moon Instructor, Department of Mathematics D EC E M B E R 2 012 l1

News & Notes December 2012

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