Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Advent Calendar 2012

I've always grown up with an advent calendar- whether it be one filled with little chocolates, the simple paper kind where you opened the flaps each morning to see a new picture, or one that actually held little trinkets. Last year I made my first handmade calendar, mostly for the OWL whom was 3. We had a blast with it!

Here is this year's calendar ....

With 24 individual paper pockets......super simple!

The best part is it made with items I already had on hand:
paper pockets ( purchased at Dollar Tree)

Now of course, this calendar will have a one year use, but there are simple ideas out there where you can make a calendar with containers that will last for many years.  

Some ideas:

I decided I wanted our calendar to include activities - but you could very easily make one with a simple trinket/treat inside, or a combination of both. Inside each of our pockets is an activity for us to do that day.  Now to make it easier, much easier, on myself I first printed out a blank calendar template for the month.  I put each and every event we had planned already for the month on the calendar.  This included items such as: trip to Santa's Village, Santa's Land at the GYC, Edaville RR, Visiting Santa, Santa Train,Christmas Party, etc. All of these items will be activities for our calendar. Super simple - using things we already had planned to do.

Using a simple piece of scrap paper with a little sticker decoration I  wrote each activity down and placed it in the correct pocket.

After the events on my calendar were done I came up with a list of other activities we could do as a family to fill in the rest of the pockets. I made sure I wrote this on my printable calendar page so I knew what I was doing each and every day!  Here are some of the ideas:

Bake Christmas cookies
Make salt dough ornaments
Make Applesauce cinnamon ornaments
Write a letter to Santa
Watch a Christmas movie and have popcorn
Decorate Christmas cookies
Make a gingerbread house
Go out to see the lights after supper ( Edward St.)
Deliver cookies to neighbors
Make reindeer food
Buy canned food and deliver to food pantry.
Have picnic dinner in front of Christmas Tree
Make Christmas cards for friends
Make ornament for tree.
Set up nativity
Decorate trees
Play Christmas game
Put up train around Christmas tree

The beauty of this year's calendar is the pocket design - if I need to make a change or adjustment to an activity based on how the day is going, I can simply slip it out to make changes!

My plan this year is to take all of the photos from our Advent ideas/activities and make them into a photo book.

These sites have great ideas for activities to use for your calendar, especially with little ones:

Enjoy and have fun with your countdown to Christmas!

1 comment:

  1. I just made one (ok really 3 as I have 3 kids) a few minutes ago using a muffin tin with 24 openings as the container, putting things inside the cups and covering it with paper circles I decorated with a Christmas stamp. Last year the kids did a Advent Calender for my husband, the house kind with big was hard to come up with ideas for each day for him. I've been dreading it. I think I may take your idea of activities and do it for family activities instead. Great idea, thanks!