Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Advent Calendar Idea

Every year we get an advent calendar and it's usually a simple flip the little card open and read a snippet of the Christmas story. My oldest daughter looked forward to the Advent Calendar even as she got older.

A few years back, I got the idea to  make the countdown to Christmas a little more fun and decorative at the same time. We still got the Advent Calendar for the story, but I made simple construction paper trees in different sizes. Then I cut out small circles and wrote the numbers 1-25 on each circle. I attached the circle to the top of the tree and randomly placed these paper trees all over the living room and dining room. Under each tree was a small treat or coins or a strip of paper with something written on it.

The kids loved the idea and couldn't wait each day to flip over a tree to see what was underneath. The rule always was that both kids had to do it together so one wouldn't find out before the other.

I did that for a few years but this year I wanted something different. After tons of research and seeing so many great ideas out there, I came up with my own version of an Advent Calendar/Countdown to Christmas.

I wanted to incorporate the religious aspect with the fun part of Christmas and have some nice decorations for my house!

I bought gift card holders that look like a tiny purse with a ribbon handle. I got them for .99 cents for a pair. I chose different styles and colors but all are Christmas themed.

Then I made the number stickers and printed them on label paper so I could easily peel and stick them on my envelopes.

I typed out a simple, easy to understand, kid-friendly version of the Advent story and printed it on 25 pieces of paper. I attached those to the back of  the gift card holders.

Then I filled each envelope with treats, coins, or paper with an activity written on each. The activity papers are the kids' favorites because they know they'll get to order pizza, go see a Christmas display or get hot chocolate.

This year I also added a few "service" activities; things they would have to do for others.

I used twine clothespins to hang the envelopes. We had so much fun with this project and now we get to look at it everyday. And until December 1, the anticipation builds as to what's inside each little envelope!

Here's my list of activities:

  • Pick a name from the church tree and buy a gift for the person
  • Go see the Christmas tree in (name of town)
  • Go for hot chocolate
  • Read a Christmas book
  • Drive around to see the lights
  • Watch a Christmas movie
  • Bring cans to the food pantry
  • Decorate cookies
  • Order pizza
  • Take a treat to a neighbor
  • Make a card for a friend and mail it
  • Make a gingerbread house
  • Find and read a Christmas story from another culture
  • Go to New York City
  • Have a sleepover in the living room
  • Breakfast for dinner
  • Make reindeer food

 I wish I had better pictures...these really just don't cut it. Oh well...

Happy Decorating Adventures!


  1. That's a really cute advent! Enjoy your activities. Here is a look at our advent activities.

  2. This is adorable! I started a brand new blog linky today and would love to have you stop by and share some of your ideas! Thanks so much!