Me and Pinterest have a love/hate relationship.
Especially at this crazy-busy time in life.
While I appreciate Pinterest's motivating creativity and attention to style, I tend to easily feel overwhelmed and under-capable of actually ‘doing' the crafts that I ‘pin'.
Sure, that tree house made out of recycled cardboard, chewed bubble gum, and bent coat hangers looks fantastic – but actually finding the time and motivation to build it is another story.
I then tend to fall into a ‘whoa is me' slump of feeling like a failure for not completing anything. And for simply being proud of myself for wearing pans and washing my face on any given day.
It's been a busy few weeks. And yes, I am proud of myself for wearing pants.
Although, I must admit, I wore my pre-pregnancy jeans yesterday to bible study. That was a mistake. Girlfriend's girly parts have been paying the price all afternoon. Guess it's back to yoga pants for me.
Girly parts are not the point of this post.
Crafting is. So let's get back to that.
Sorry for the rabbit trail.
While browsing Pinterest the other night in the wee hours of the morning (hey, it gives me something to do during those 1 a.m. feedings…) I ran across a very simple make-at-home Advent calender.
I'd been really wanting to get one up this year, especially since Georgia is at such a fun age. I knew she would love it.
And even though this is a few days late to be sharing, there are still twenty days left of Advent! Plenty of time to still appreciate the calender and focus on anticipating the birth of our Savior later this month.
We purchased the supplies to make this for less than $3 and it was put together in a matter of minutes. Perfect to accomplish on one of those days when you're just trying to keep the house from burning down. It really doesn't require too much effort.
I simply printed the numbers out on red and green paper…
…then cut them out and taped them to brown paper bags that had the tops cut off.
After that, I tucked a few candies into each bag and included the coordinating Scripture reading for that particular day. The bags were then pinned onto twine with clothes-pins. Easy. Uncomplicated. Some may say ‘boring'. But I say at least it's something!
And by all means, the kiddos could easily decorate the bags for you and bring up the pizzazz-factor a few notches. Glitter glue would have been a welcomed edition here.
More importantly, I am loving the daily reminder to refocus my attention on Christ during the madness December can bring.
I am also loving how the pretty bags distract from our ugly window that doesn't have any curtains.
As a family, we are doing THIS daily reading after dinner while Georgia nibbles on a few of the treats. Next year, when I don't have a two-week-old baby (as well as when Georgia is older and more able to participate), I think I'll borrow a few of these great Advent activities from Lindsay at Passionate Homemaking to tuck include in the calender:
Buy a new Christmas album and listen to it
Open and read a Christmas story book
Go to the mountain and find a Christmas tree
Make pumpkin bread and give to the neighbors
Sing Christmas carols around the tree
Make a fun Christmas ornament
Open and read a Christmas story book (Legend of the Christmas Stocking, Legend of the Christmas Tree, etc)
Wrap Christmas Gifts for our stockings
Make a popcorn/cranberry garland
Make Candy Cane Playdough – give some to neighbor friends
Make reindeer candy canes
Dance to Christmas music
Make a memory Christmas ornament – record memories from the year
Color a Christmas picture
Make coconut hot chocolate and stir with candy canes
Watch a Christmas movie and eat white chocolate peppermint popcorn
Build a Gingerbread house
Drive around and look for Christmas lights
Go visit Santa Claus
Make a Jesus Gift basket and deliver to a family in need
Have a camp out in front of the Christmas tree
Call grandma and grandpa and sing a Christmas song
Sing Christmas carols at senior citizens home
Watch The Nativity Story about the birth of Baby Jesus
Make a birthday cake for Jesus.
Another idea we’d like to do throughout the month as we receive various Christmas cards from family and friends is to read/look at the cards together and pray for the families in turn.
I wish I would have had the time to prepare a few of these activities before Owen arrived, but alas, I am pretty dang proud of myself for just getting the calender up in time for Advent. And we may be able to squeeze in a few of them in without too much planning, even though I haven't organized anything.
I know there are a million variations of the Advent calender and Advent activities out there. How wonderful it is to look forward to the birth of our coming Messiah!
What's YOUR family's favorite Advent traditions?