How special is your Advent Calendar?
I hadn’t ever thought much beyond the chocolate advent calendars you buy at the supermarket … until last year when my eyes were opened to the glory & wonder of all that Advent Calendars can be! Let’s just say I was very quickly hooked!!
So now I’ve added “Mummy’s Advent Calendar” as one of our special Christmas family traditions. Hopefully as the years go by it will become something that the family will grow to look forward too as December 1st draws nearer – “what will she do this year!?”
Like anything so many options, and knowing me and my personality I wanted to start something with a bit of “flex” in the idea so that I could change, adapt and develop my family’s advent calendar every year – but an element of it would always feel the same. So, I fell in love with a “blank canvas” sort of approach.
With this as my starter every year I can do something slightly different that will work into my evolving style and taste. This style of blank canvas style is a perfect size for a family to share and adaptable enough so that not every day is a chocolate or present. I want my family’s Christmas to be about giving and caring for others as well as about us. So plenty of room for a bit of everything!
My colour scheme this year is “scandi” inspired (I’m so on trend!) and simplistic with the colours of red, white and gold being the focus. I think the “opening” time for 2016 will be at 6pm … hopefully when Daddy is home and we can have a family moment together.
This is what my curated selection of goodies is this year:
*A sprinkling of candy canes & chocolates (of course)
*Some special Christmas crayons (in preparation for our family craft activity)
*Good Dead Cards – there are 3 of these, and in each we have to complete the task for the day as family; collect ten pieces of rubbish from a public area and throw it in the big; do something for Fred one of our lovely elderly neighbours; choose one toy each to donate to a charity (not the one you like the least!)
*Santa letter – get our special letter/s to Santa and “post” them in our magic family envelope (and hopefully one day there will be a magical reply)
*Craft activity – each person is to write/make a Christmas card to someone special who lives far way – I’m a big believer in the magic of the written word and the hand delivered post. One big family night of colouring, pasting and writing!
*A hair clip or two – unicorn & darth vader & gold sparkles (I have two girls and some pretty amazing hair clips in my “stocking filler gifts” on my website this year that they have been dying to get their hands on)
*Photos – I choose 5 of the best family photos from the year and printed them on a square ‘instant photo’ frame and then glued them onto red foam board and attached a cute string and wooden clip so that they could be hung on the tree. Each time we open one we will talk about the moment from the year and reflect and be thankful
*Gingerbread men – I brought some sweet little cookies from a local deli and wrapped them in 3 little bags and tied them with red bows. One in each bag for all of us including the dog!
*Game – I found some really sweet little Christmas charades cards and split them into a few cutely wrapped little bundles
*Christmas story book – there is one little parcel which has a clue to find the “new” Christmas story book for the year (it will be hidden somewhere fun)
*O and on the 24th I have the special Christmas decoration for 2016 that my mother-in-law stitches the family every year … but equally it could be a special bought treasure for the tree
PHEW!! That is 24 done and dusted. I had a lot of fun deciding on all of these!!
This is my advent Calendar for 2016 …
Christmas is a special time of year and I hope our advent calendar will create family moments of “together-ness” each night that often get lost in the normal day to day routine and rhythm of life. And that these will be memories we all treasure.
I wonder where and what I will do next year?!
Some final thoughts
Where do you buy a blank canvas from?
I sold my white advent calendar on my website but, I am completely sold out … so these are my picks for other really beautiful ‘blank canvas’ style calendars:
Do I have any other ideas, or ideas for next year? Funny you should ask …
*Perhaps a large puzzle might be fun … a Christmas scene with the pieces carefully curated so that as the girls pull them out the image really forms. Perhaps I could even make one, or get one made? And a sprinkling of chocolates I think!
Do you have a dog in your family … or perhaps you know someone with a fur baby. I think these dog advent calendars are pretty amazing. I’ve sent one to my brother for his fur baby!
*I brought an advent calendar from Fluff & Bubbles plus their “set of x24 different tea bags” and sent to a friend in NZ … I really thought these were pretty sweet. They have some gorgeous, affordable calendars you can add your own things too. Perhaps there monotone print out is a good idea – so pretty and pretty easy to do (a “work” printer would print the monotone out very well …)
*And if all this really does tickle your fancy, have a look through my pinterest inspiration boards for loads more ideas!