I read a great idea on the Kiddley site (A fun site that you have to check out if you have kids) to create an advent calendar that lists a family activity for each day. That would be even more fun than discovering a piece of candy each day.
This picture is an advent creating using match boxes that slide open to reveal the activity of the day. The Kiddley author made one by creating simple origami envelopes that she sealed shut, but I think it would be better to set it up in a way that you could easily make changes so on snowy days you could slide in a weather appropriate activity like building a snowman. Be sure to consult your calendar as you create your list of activities so you'll which days can allow more time consuming activities and keep a separate list of the activities so you can plan ahead for them and have the supplies that you need ready.
The Kiddley list of activity ideas includes some warm weather ideas since she lives in Australia so a came up with some Christmasy ideas of my own like:
- Write a letter to Santa
- Cut out snowflakes
- Make a gingerbread house
- Camp out around the Christmas tree
- Call Grandma and Grandpa and sing a Christmas song to them
- Spend time dancing to Christmas music
- Buy small gifts for the Giving Tree (A family in my mom's ward was worried about their kids focusing on receiving more than giving so they came up with the idea of creating a Giving Tree separate from their normal tree. They take the kids out to buy inexpensive gifts to decorate the tree like stickers, and candy and then everytime they have a visitor the kids get to take them to the Giving Tree to let them choose a gift.)
- Drop off gifts to the neighbors
- Have a hot chocolate tea party
- Make paper chains to decorate kids’ bedrooms
- Visit friends and family around town and take pictures of all of them wearing a Rudolph nose or Santa Hat. Develop the pictures and you them to decorate (hang then on the fridge or put them in frames that hold multiple pictures
- Watch a Christmas movie like The Santa Clause or How the Grinch Stole Christmas
- Work on Christmas cards – mom and dad can write theirs while the kids create their own
- Drive around to look at Christmas lights
- Buy a new ornament – let each child choose their own and record why they chose it in an album, then when they leave home let they take their collection and album
I can't wait to have kids so I can start this! I would have loved this when I was little. Actually I would love it now. Maybe I should make one for Larry.