Family Traditions: Advent Calendar
We’re all about holiday traditions, especially this year when everything feels so different. Last year we started the tradition of putting a little Christmas tree in Oliver’s room for him. It was something my sisters and I did as kids, so it really warms my heart to continue the tradition with Oliver. This year we’re continuing with our advent calendar but being a little more serious about it. Last year we used it more as a count down to Christmas, without any activities or treats. This year I put together 24 advent calendar ideas for our family and I wanted to share with you. I made the advent calendar ideas into a free download (for personal use only please).
Advent Calendar Ideas for Toddlers
The plan is to laminate the advent calendar ideas so that I can use them next year too. I added a few general holiday activities and small gift ideas, along with things that are more specific to Oliver’s current interests. For example, Oliver has been really into stickers and stamps lately, so I bought a few packs and I’ll sprinkle them throughout the advent calendar. He is also really into wreaths and holiday decor, so I have certain things like painting a paper wreath (made from a recycled cardboard box) and creating an orange peel garland together. Last year we made a salt-dough handprint ornament (swipe through to see an action shot) and I’m so excited to do again this year. (Here’s the recipe and directions we used.)
Minimal Advent Calendar
I’m so excited Gathre came out with an advent calendar of their own this year. The pockets are way bigger than the one we had last year, so it’s easier to fit in little treats and the cards I created. Plus, it’s made from the same material as their mats and tablecloths, so easy its to clean in case any sticky fingers get to it. 😉 (You can use code NEWDARLINGS10 for 10% off)
Advent Calendar Activity and Small Gift Ideas
We’re planning on doing a lot of baking (love this gingerbread camper kit and this traditional gingerbread kit too), decorating and Christmas light spotting around our neighborhood. The Phoenix Zoo also has a drive through light display, we’re looking forward to. We really wanted to shy away from too many treats, so small gifts like we mentioned above will be his little gifts leading up to the holiday. As we grow closer to Christmas there will be a few bigger surprises like a train set that we plan to set up by the tree and this collectible Night Before Christmas leather-bound book, that we plan to read on Christmas Eve. All of these will turn into traditions of their own and I’m so darn excited!!