Our family has always had some type of advent calendar. My mother in law enjoys finding the new playmobil every year, so we actually have several around the house. We’ve done chocolate calendars and calendars with trinkets. (though I have to say that getting a little trinket every day in December was over the top… I think that only occurred one year)Last year’s advent calendar was simple. I found some great ideas around the web, made a list, set the box on the table.. we were good to go.
As I was thinking about this year’s calendar, I knew I wanted to do something similar but put more time into the planning aspect. I recall last year feeling very rushed and instead of having fun with the daily activities, it was all a bit of a chore for me.
This year I took an idea from Parker’s birthday ( which was Nov. 1st, and which I totally neglected to blog about.. have I mentioned we’ve got a really busy schedule this year?) and applied it to our calendar. For his birthday one of Grace’s friends came over and they used a tea-stained piece of paper to make a map. The map directed him all around our house and yard and as he hunted he found his birthday gifts. It was a blast!
Initially I thought the idea of opening scrolls (similar to his tea-stained map) each day in advent would be really fun for everyone, but I realized the daily activities needed to be changed up a bit as well. What I ended up with was a really nice set of watercolored scrolls, a fantastic little box (clearance at Hobby Lobby!) and a doable list of activities.
Here’s a sample:
day 8 ~Share your favorite holiday memories!
day 9 ~
day 21 ~
Hot Chocolate with all the fixin’s!
day 22 ~
Leave goodies on a friend’s door!
Bedtime stories around the Christmas tree!
Christmas Eve luminaries!
There are many days that focus on a particular scripture and Advent’s themes of joy, peace, light and hope.
I ended up making more scrolls, writing an entire guide-book to go along with them, and selling them as kits to raise money for charity.
I love this calendar so much, and I think it will be super easy to switch out different scrolls and ideas in the coming years.