Tomorrow marks the first day of Advent, and with it all the traditions the come along with the celebration of Christmas. A few years ago, we bought an Advent calendar to use with LM, but I knew I didn’t want to put candy in it, I wanted something more meaningful. So we made ours an Advent activities calendar.
Each Day of Advent, LM runs to the calendar as soon as he wakes up to find out what the day’s activity will be. I think he’s at least as excited as he would be if it were candy. Don’t worry, he gets candy in the 25th’s box. While the activities are mostly very simple, it’s like a contract that says he and I (and Bean, and maybe Dad) will have a specific time set aside, dedicated to an activity where we connect with each other. It helps keep me from getting swept up in the hustle and bustle and remember to make special Christmas memories with my children.
The first year or two, I just made slips of paper and wrote different things on them, but it was a lot of work.
Then I decided I wanted something more permanent– containing the activities we do on a yearly basis, with room for a lot of flexibility– so my Advent Activities Printable was born. I updated it for you with hand-drawn illustrations so it can be both useful and cute. (That’s what we all strive to be, right? Useful and cute? Ha.)
And while there are only 25 days in December, there are forty-eight squares, ten of them left blank for you to personalize.
I printed mine on white card stock, and they’ve held up quite well.
These are things we actually do, and there is a mix of the really simple (drink hot cocoa) to ones that require a little more effort (make gifts) but for the most part I keep things really simple to keep myself sane during the holidays. And with all the extra ones, I can switch things out the night before if I know there’s no chance of us having time to go ice skating the next day.
Here are some helpful links to some other printable we use in connection with our Advent activities:
Snowman Dice Game
Christmas matching game
We use this technique for making super festive bubbles for our bubble baths.
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And if you love this printable, check out my Free Printable Holiday Card!