With the 1st December rapidly approaching and the count down to Christmas officially on its way, the start of advent is nearly here. Over the last few years we have seen shop bought advent calendars evolve from just chocolate and picture advent calendars into toy gift and cereal advent calendars for the children to anything from make-up, gin and cheese for the adults but have you ever thought of making your own advent Christmas count down? You still have a bit of time left to create your own advent calendar and here are a few ideas.
A book advent calendar. The books could be Christmas themed or a selection of new books your child hasn't read before, old books you have in the house or a mixture of new and old. What a great idea for encouraging you and your child to read with new or re-acquainted reading material each day. Maybe wrap up the books and number them or put them in a lucky dip for your child to pull out one at random each day. 24 books I hear you cry! That's a lot to collect... why not head down to your local library and get some out to borrow, our local library has a 3 week loan period so this should give you and your child chance to explore some books in plenty of time, you could perhaps take out the first 12, return them and get the next set out. Go on a search for book offers, many shops on the high street and internet has great offers on books including 10 books for £10, you can also pick up books in the pound shop for a pound each and the charity shops, Christmas fairs, brick and brack sales and carboots (if any are still on in your area) are always a good bet for picking up 20p / 50p books.
A Christmas Decoration a day. Why don't you give your child a Christmas decoration a day for their advent calendar, obviously making sure they are age appropriate and safe for them! These could be shop bought or homemade. The idea would be for you child to hang their decoration on the Christmas tree daily, obviously if you don't have your tree up for a while they could just keep them safely until the tree goes up. The decorations could be sentimental, purchased / made with love or one colourful to match your Christmas colour theme.
Christmas Advent Calendar Treasure Hunt. For example, could you give your child a clue each day where they have to find their 'advent treasure' hidden around the house or garden or even during a walk. A treasure hunt might take a bit of planning as you may need to gather gifts, think of clues and hiding places but think of the fun and memories you will create whilst getting those little brains problem solving.
Craft Calendar. Maybe your child loves to craft. Could you create a Crafting Advent Calendar where you supply your child with 24 days of crafting goodies. Allow their imagination to run wild with makes and creations throughout the lead up to the big day.
Christmas Activities Calendar. This could be a very cheap and fun way to get your family in the festive mood. You may need some paper, pens and imagination! Set your family 24 festive activities, one for them to do each day. Ideas could include: making a snowflake, singing a Christmas song, making a paper chain for a decoration, reading a Christmas story, writing Christmas Cards, making up a Christmas play or writing your letter to Father Christmas. There are so many options but a good internet search can always help you out if you're stuck!
Singing Advent Calendar. A song a day, perfect for little babies and all members of the family. It's the perfect way to get everyone involved in the Christmas build up. Why not sing a nursery rhyme or song a day? Write a list of numbers next to each song, pick it out of a hat each morning and get singing. They could be nursery rhymes or songs, festive or not.
Have you ever made a personalised Christmas Advent Calendar before? Who did you make it for and what did you do? Or do you just find is it much easier and quicker just to get a shop bought one? It would be great to hear how you count down to Christmas in your house.