Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Our Advent Calendar & Advent Activities

Our 2009 Advent Calendar

Wow, sorry for the lack of posts last week and then this recent flurry of them. We've been up to our ears in ornaments and advent activities. So I guess I better put up a post about our advent calendar so you'll believe me. :-P

Top of our advent calendar

Every year I think I am going to get a really cool advent calendar made for our family to use permanently.

Close-up of part of our advent calendar

And every year I run out of time....but this year I did follow a simple advent calendar idea - so at least I got one up for a bit.

Another close-up of advent calendar

I slapped down some coin envelopes in front of the kiddos and said "have at 'em" and they returned to me some sweetly holiday decorated advent activity holders.

Bottom of the advent calendar

We got the tree on the wall idea from here, via The Crafty Crow.

And here is a list of some of our daily advent activities for this year (plus some extra ideas for the days between Christmas and New Years)

Watch a Charlie Brown Christmas
Watch The Grinch
Watch It's a Wonderful Life
Watch Polar Express
Write letters to Santa
Make ornaments and give some away to neighbors
Go buy toys for the local Toys for Tots (they are using the money they have saved here to buy these toys)
Go out and cut down Christmas tree
Decorate the house and tree
Have friends over for a little kids treat/craft afternoon
Have a Christmas treasure hunt around the house
Family Game Night
Write about Christmas evening - write a family Christmas story in the round and come up with job descriptions for Santa's elves
Ice cream out at our favorite local ice cream shop
Make cinnamon Christmas ornaments
Attend the library Christmas craft day event
Make & decorate Christmas cookies
Build a snowman
Go to Eagle Crest and see the lights and then drive around other neighborhoods looking at house lights
Go see a movie in the movie theater together
Take a winter hike
Go Christmas caroling with friends
Put on a Christmas play in the living room
Set-up the Little People nativity set and trace Mary & Joseph's path on a map
Make a frozen sun catcher
Christmas painting craft
Christmas sewing craft

Phew!!! There are a few we probably won't get to this year and sometimes we combine more than one activity. And sometimes this Mama says "Leave me be maniacs! I am WORN out!" But we try. We also shuffle around the activities in the envelopes so they correspond with a day that we can actually get that activity done - like we obviously are not building a snowman if we don't have snow on that day.

There are TONS of web sites, especially the crafty ones, that have advent calendar making ideas and advent activity ideas. Here's just a few:

Whip Up
The Crafty Crow
Kids Craft Weekly
And then of course flickr (this is just one group there are tons of photos on this site)
Oh, and Family Fun has this cute tree you can print out with activities already listed (I snagged a few of their ideas).

Meanwhile, I should probably just start now on my advent calendar for next year so I will actually have it done. Hmmmm...that would be rather proactive of me....yeah, won't happen. :-) I would, however, LOVE to hear about your advent activities! Cheers!


  1. Hey, great Advent Calendar! We did the classic paper chain one this year. I came very close to writing Advent Activities on each piece of chain but chickened out. I was very worried about my sometimes lack of "follow through" combined with Drew's sometimes lack of "flexibility". It's not always the best combo. Mayby next year he and I will both be more mature and can make it work.

  2. Love this! My daughter loves envelopes and this would be perfect!