So last year on November 30, I realized we had thrown away our advent calendar the previous year. Whoops. At that point, the stores were sold out of the Lego advent calendars so I turned to pinterest and the ever helpful search of “DIY Advent Calendar.”
I got a lot of great (and near impossible) ideas and saw multiple posts on activities to do as a family for advent and to make it less about the “stuff” and more about the season.
I am ashamedly a fan of the stuff and decided to present my family time ideas in handmade origami christmas trees which worked out about as well as you can imagine given I was still in the first trimester of pregnancy and vomiting every 45 seconds. Origami was at the top of my to do list for sure.
Presentation aside, the calendar was awesome. There were still quite a few tchotchkes but a fair amount of family movie nights, cookie making and light gazing to offset my love affair with the (not really) dollar bins at Target.
This year, I found a much much easier display method, scaled back a tiny bit on the stuff, added in a few more activities and a ton of self reminders that the best present is simply to be present for my children.
Our 2014 Advent calendars. Which I swear are super simple to make.
Today’s surprise was a 2-for-1 special. I loathe elf on a shelf but heard someone mention they did a similar idea with the wise men from the nativity. The idea being every day the wise men get a little closer to the nativity scene, finally arriving on Christmas Day.
There was a discussion with the girls about the reason we give gifts at Christmas is because the wise men gave gifts to Jesus but that the greatest gift of all is Jesus himself. So they moved to nativity to its new home under the christmas tree as a daily reminder of that.
Side note, if you have kids and don’t have the Fisher-Price Little People nativity, get it now. Favorite Christmas toy ever.
The wise men were opened (a dollar bin purchase), placed, and are ready to begin their epic journey.
Josh did day one as I went out for a run and he was pleased to report skeptical Eliza is really excited about her wise man’s journey. Let’s hope the enthusiasm remains! Please don’t point out the irony of me trying to be more present for my children by going for a run while dad handles advent duties.
(Also I’ve learned if I actually want to keep blogging I need to embrace technology and blogging from my phone. So if things look weird or pictures go funky, let me know please as this post was made with one thumb typing while trying to nurse Graham to sleep. Which isn’t working. The sleep, I mean. Not the blogging. I think that’s working.)