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Family Advent 2015

I want to share what our family does for Advent, and maybe inspire some ideas for the season! You can see what we did last year here https://www.facebook.com/notes/samanda-rossi/advent-2014/10152909585198343.

Although we are not a religious family, we do focus on the spirit of Christmas and the life of Jesus. I love the Christmas season, and feel it gives our family opportunities to demonstrate the example Jesus set forth and focus on meaningful relationships within our family, our friends, and our community. When the boys were little, I did an Advent/countdown to Christmas calendar. This was fun, but didn’t do anything but make my kids more greedy for chocolate and gifts. One year we tried to do 24 Random Acts of Kindness instead. This was difficult because of time and general life. The past few years I have done a spin on this, and it’s worked beautifully. My kids look as forward to Advent as they do Christmas day.

Here is how I do it:

Prior to Advent, I figure out a thematic “schedule”. This is not a strict schedule, as sometimes we end up having to do two in one day or move things around because of life and other things that come up, we are pretty flexible. Here is this year’s, I’ve simplified it a bunch this year because of the baby who will arrive sometime this month so I wanted things that could be put together easily in advance, that my husband or a postpartum doula could facilitate if needed, and include meals and activities that I could feasibly still participate in with a nursling.

Weekly Events:

Tuesdays – Sweet Stuff

Wednesdays – Focus on Family

Thursdays – Make It, Bake It, Do It

Fridays – Family Holiday Movie Nights

Saturdays – Good Times, Good Trips

Sundays – Acts of Kindness and Service

Mondays – Friendship

This Year’s Calendar of Events:

Tuesday 12/1 – Trim the Tree and receive a chocolate Advent calendar to count down

Wednesday 12/2 – Decorate your Brothers Room for the Holidays

Thursday 12/3 – Make a fleece blanket for a Veteran

Friday 12/4 – Elf, plus a marshmallow game and hot chocolate https://www.dropbox.com/s/71gh6422np8k7s4/Elf-Game.pdf

Saturday 12/5 – Cans Film Festival

Sunday 12/6 – Shop for our Adopted Family

Monday 12/7 – Gift a “Reindeer Snot” Kit to a friend (Homemade Slime Kit) http://www.momendeavors.com/2015/06/elmers-glue-slime-kit-party-favor.html

Tuesday – 12/8 – Candy Wreath for Lunch Treats (I attach candy I took out of their Halloween stashes and hang them on a wreath. Each day they can choose one to include in their lunch bags).

Wednesday 12/9 – Shop for Scout (our dog) and donate some treats to a pet rescue.

Thursday 12/10 – Make Gingerbread Houses

Friday – 12/11 – The Sound of Music with Apple Strudel

Saturday 12/12 – Nutcracker on Ice

Sunday 12/13 – Choose a neighbor and take out their trash cans for them (and return them on Monday)

Monday 12/14 – Donut Drop Off – choose a friend to drop off a dozen donuts to as a surprise dessert treat.

Tuesday, 12/15 – Bean Boozled Jelly Beans

Wednesday 12/16 – Family Candlelight Dinner

Thursday 12/17 – Make a Bird Feeder and place in our backyard http://birding.about.com/od/birdfeeders/a/Make-A-Plastic-Bottle-Bird-Feeder.htm

Friday 12/18 – Christmas Vacation with Aunt Edna’s Jello Mold!

Saturday 12/19 – Christmas Light Outing/Viewing

Sunday 12/20 – Have a hot cocoa stand and give funds to a charity

Monday 12/21 – Create a Lego Building Kit for a friend and give it to them!

Tuesday 12/22 – Chocolate Monopoly

Wednesday 12/23 – Read the Christmas Story and watch A Charlie Brown Christmas

Thursday 12/24 – Make a chicken treat plate for Charlotte (our chicken who is now rehomed) and her flock and deliver PLUS Christmas Eve Box (pajames, stocking to hang, platter and cup for cookies and milk)

Hope this is helpful to you and yours this season, or any time of year, you wish to focus on family, friends, and others.