For the last couple of weeks I've been working on an Advent calendar for the fam. I got ideas from Martha Stewart, Pinterest and some crafty bloggers and came up with this.
It caused me a little more strife than I would've liked and took more time than I expected, but now that its done and on the wall, I'm really happy with the end result. I found a cheapo canvas at Big Lots that Blinn covered with (free) burlap from Stauf's. The boxes are decoupaged with cute papes from a new holiday stack that I got and the number stickers were all ones I already had. I used a 1 1/2" circle punch for the circles and the cutesy ribbon is one I saved from Christmas 2005. It was part of my gift from the boy and I've cherished it ever since. And the chunky ol wine bottle cork the whole thing hangs from? From Korbel, where we visited on our honeymoon. I love the whole thing and I'm already looking forward to pulling it out for years to come!
Each box has a little slip of paper in it with the day's activity leading up to Christmas. Since Z is so young and she needs to do something to hold her attention, our activities are slightly fluffy, but get everyone excited and in the Christmas spirit. As time goes on, I'd like to have each box filled with an act of service or kindness, teaching my kids that Christmas isn't just about what is for you under the tree or how many sweets you can consume or getting to wear fancy new clothes. What will be really cool one day will be to see what activities the littles come up with on their own. Here's hoping that my dreams for this simple little calendar aren't set too high!
Here's what we'll be doing this month and it been lots of fun already.
Get Christmas books from the library
Make paper snowflakes
See lights in Gahanna, deliver toys to Toys for Tots
Make ornaments, Advent gathering
Drink homemade hot chocolate from decorated holiday mugs
Make table decorations for Shearron Family Christmas
Go to Mrs. Claus' Workshop at Franklin Park Conservatory
Go to Main Library to see holiday train display
Watch Love Actually
See lights at Scioto Mile, decorate gingerbread house
Shearron Family Chritsmas, Advent gathering
Make treats for neighbors
Make Christmas cookies
Drop off gifts to Clintonville Resource Center
Make Chrismas sock puppets
Watch A Charlie Brown Christmas
See zoo lights with Mosleys
Decorate giant gingerbread man, Advent gathering
Make handprint ornaments
Make goodies for solstice party
Make thank you notes for Christmas gifts
Winter Solstice Open House
Watch Christmas Eve on Sesame Street, Bettinger Family Christmas, go to service at Vineyard
At Vineyard today I read their statement about Advent which reads: " The season of Advent is a time in which followers of Jesus anticipate the celebration of Christ's birth on Christmas Day. While many are caught up in the consumerism and pressures of the American holiday season, our church community endeavors to slow down and reflect on our need for God, His Love, His Mercy, and how we might reflect that love to the world around us. Our Advent focus in 2011 is Jesus Christ, the Prince of Peace."
'Nuff said, if you ask me.