Advent Calendar

Advent Calendars have come a long way. It is an old German tradition. But they started far different than what we now use. Families used to make a chalk line each day until Christmas. Now we can find or make all kinds of elaborate advent calendars.

Here is one antique Advent Calendar that I found online.

My mom used to buy the cardboard ones that you popped open and ate a piece of chocolate each day.

It was one of my favorite Christmas traditions. I know... an advent calendar of all things!

our goal this year is to GIVE not to get. So a lot of our Christmas traditions will be altered to accomplish this.

This year we are going to be using our new advent calendar differently. Instead of finding candy or gifts inside, my children will be finding a little note and maybe something to go along with it. It won't be something for them, but something for them to do for someone else. My children are young so the concepts will be pretty easy. Here are a few of the examples I have come up with so far:

1. Make a Christmas card for someone you love (maybe a special token or picture to use on the card)
2. Do something kind for one of your siblings.
3. Help mom and dad shovel the neighbors driveway.
4. Bring hot cocoa to your teacher (a little hot cocoa packet in the box)

Over the last couple of days, Alanna and I made a new calendar. It is simply icicle boxes with the numbers 1-24 on them.

Here is the template I used to make these. (Although, I wish I had used this one) I did not print the template on the back of the paper we used because I had 12x12 paper. I knew I could fit more than one each piece! So, I traced the template 3 times on each sheet of paper. Then, I used the template as a guide to fold them correctly. I didn't cut the handle out, but just used a hole punch instead. You can do either. Alanna and I picked out a bunch of branches from the backyard to stick in a vase. Then we hung the boxes. I'm not sure if I will leave these on the sticks, though. Maybe just on the Christmas tree. Either way, they're coming down until December :)

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