Epiphany began with discovering treat-filled shoes that had been left out with grass for the magi's camels on twelfth night. The magi always leave a book for each boy under their shoes (to help the boys become wise men) and some treats, which always include chocolate coins. It is always a bit like a mini Christmas morning and I love ending Christmastide this way.
And while our day began auspiciously, it ended with a lot of tired children after school and a few soar throats which made us miss the service we so hoped to attend. We did manage to chalk the door and shared the house blessing from "The Year and our Children." We also enjoyed take-out from the east (take-out isn't something we normally do, so it is quite the exciting occurrence to have dinner arrive at our door.) It certainly wasn't a perfect scene as tired grumbles were all around, but we made it through the blessing and dinner together, which was good enough.
This is the second year that we have chalked the door. You may notice that the blue chalk that we used last year was still there, so we just added pink on top this year. I like the idea of adding layers of blessing each year. The tradition of chalking the door is a lovey one and probably came to be because the magi visited the house where the Christ child was living. The 20+C+M+B 16 stands for the year 2016 with the blessing of the magi in it - The magi are symbolized by cross and their first initial (traditionally the names of the magi are Caspar, Melchior, and Belthasar). Alternatively, the CMB can mean Christus mansionem benedicat - May God Bless this House.
Here is the last bit of the house blessing from The Year and Our Children::
And the glory of the Lord is risen upon thee. Let us pray. Bless, O Lord, almighty God, his home that it be the shelter of health, chastity, self-conquest, humility, goodness, mildness, obedience to the commandments, and thanksgiving to God the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. May blessing remain for all time upon this dwelling and them that live herein. Through Christ our Lord. Amen.