Posted by on Feb 12, 2012 in My Blog, Think About This | 3 comments

Custom of Fanning the Christmas Wreath in March

My neighbors can well attest to my leaving my Christmas wreath on my front door way after Christmas and well into the New Year.  It’s become a Stewart Family Tradition now.  I refer to it as the Custom of Fanning the Christmas Wreath.  There is not a clearly established date to exactly when this tradition begins and ends each year.  The weather determines that.

In 2012, it began last night when our temperature got down to 23 degrees.  A few years back, I noticed that when I went out my front door at night, little birds would fly out of their self-claimed hide-aways in my Christmas wreath.  Being the bird lover that I am, I wanted to prevent their coming inside my house…I knew we would be very strange bedfellows, so I began “preparing” the birds that the door was coming open by fanning the door a few short times to alert them.  Though my plan was a good one, I did have one incident when a couple of my feathered friends flew inside and a tall, handsome neighbor came over to scoot them out the door.  Not an easy task since my house is 120 years old with high ceilings and 3-5 ft. entries from one room to another.  But, alas, we succeeded.  I am much more careful now.

In early 2010, I had ordered pizza for supper one night and I forgot to alert the birds that the door was about to open.  Imagine  the surprise the pizza delivery man got!  He had stepped back out on the sidewalk and called up to me, “Did you throw something at me?”  I responded with, “OK, now do I LOOK like someone who would throw something at you?”  

Then, on March 3, that same year,  both my daughters flew into town for my Retirement Celebration, one from Florida and the other from Kansas.  Now, we three know how to have fun and since I still had my Christmas decorations up (including the Christmas tree…I mean why NOT wait until they are in town to help dismantle it?)  I picked up Florida Daughter at the Charlotte airport and then we headed straight to Greensboro to get Kansas Daughter.  Florida Daughter asked if I wanted to have some fun and, of course, I said YES!  Out she pulled from her carry-on bag two Santa hats and one set of deer antlers with lights.  “Which one you want, Mom?”  I think I went with the antlers.

As Kansas Daughter is riding the esclator down to meet us in baggage, Florida Daughter and I began singing, “We Wish You a Merry Christmas.”  Smart and sly as a fox, Kansas Daughter frowned and said something to the man in front of her like, “Oh, boy, SOMEBODY’s getting a big surprise !” as if she didn’t know us.  So the fun had begun.

When we arrived at my house, everyone got their bags and quickly headed for the front porch because it was cold.  You will be so proud of me…I remembered to warn them about the birds.  I told them that  “sometimes the little birds hide away in my Christmas wreath, so I carefully unlock the door like this, and fan the door back and forth quickly to alert them…” and the rest is history.  Three grown women standing 10″ from the door knowing why we were waiting, SCREAMED BLOODY MURDER and were SCARED NEARLY TO DEATH when those little birds flew ever so quickly out into the night.

So, the neighbors knew we were home!

We love that story which has become a tradition now.  So, if you drive by my house and wonder why the Christmas wreath and garlands in the window boxes are still there in March, I’m providing a bit of a homeless shelter for some of God’s very special creatures.



  1. 2-13-2012

    Very fun reading!

  2. 2-13-2012

    One of my favorite side-splitting experiences!!! 🙂

  3. 2-14-2012

    LOVE THIS! I tell the pizza guy story to people ALL the time! haha!

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