se7en

The life and times of a home schooling mom of se7en + 1.

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Se7en Create an Advent Village Calendar…

December 3rd, 2009 · 14 Comments

I know we should have done this before but Advent is one of those times of year where kids are forgiving and things always take longer than you are expecting. That being said the blog world is bursting with beautifully crafted advent calendars. Have a look at Whip Up, One Pretty Thing and the Crafty Crow. The thought of buying se7en + 1 advent calendars stuffed with candy sends me reeling in anxiety. And while I could craft for months in advance the most fun we have had are those thrown together last minute plans…

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So here is our calendar in Se7en Steps:

Step 1: We used a shopping bag (we needed a large piece of background – use whatever you have!) and some envelopes (and if you have done your Christmas cards then you should have some envelopes left over!!!)

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Step 2:Seal your envelopes and cut them in half.

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Step 3: Cut a triangle out of the front of each envelope and line them up on your shopping bag. We had to cut our bag open to fit all the envelopes on it…

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Step 4: Then all the hoods drew a couple of houses…

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Step 5: We stuck our houses onto the bag…

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Step 6: Then we added some Christmas trees to make it look a bit more Chrismassy!!! How would we live without potato prints!

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Step 7: We added street numbers to our village.

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We popped two extra pockets onto our calendar – one for wishes and one for tasks.

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And we were done.

Let’s get on with the stuffing it: This is the part that is fun for me. We stuff our calendar with so many things to do that we can hardly get through them but we sure can have fun trying!!! To prevent any peepers I gather my resources in one place and then pop the goodies for the day into the pocket the night before.

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Se7en things we pop into our advent calendar:

  1. Wishes: We brainstorm this together, these are the outings our kids would like to do, the crafts they would like to try and recipes they may want to tackle… anything goes, it all goes into the pile and we try and get through them all. Well the realistic ones – no trips to the moon, but we can try the beach and ice-creams!!!
  2. Tasks: We have what we need to get tackling those gifts… and if we make a list and schedule them into our calendar they stand a good chance of getting done!!!
  3. Jokes: My kids love jokes and riddles… print them out and stuff a couple into the envelope of the day.
  4. Game: Last year we managed a different board or card game a day for the whole of advent… We don’t play a lot of board games, we tend to forget they exist… but if I sit and play with my kids they tend to go off and play for weeks afterwards – they just need a bit of a boost!!! And this is the best time to do that… If it is scheduled for the day I fit it in, but otherwise never get around to it!!!
  5. Craft: I try and do a really simple Christmas craft everyday all the way up to Christmas. Last year we did the Crafty Crows Christmas Book Crafts – it was such fun and we will definitely be making some of those crafty delights again this year. Otherwise there is Family Fun, Kaboose, and Activity Village that are packed with ideas.
  6. Jesse Tree: We did this last year and we will do it again this year. And we like to do a Christmas Carol day (from ctraleigh.org).
  7. Online Advent Calendars: these provide heaps of things to do and I just love clicking on them:
    1. Activity Village,
    2. About.com
    3. I love Woodlands-junior, go and look at this site for heaps of fun!
    4. Online coloring Advent Calendar from Kented.org.uk
    5. Liverpool Museum even has one with Christmas artifacts to look at…
    6. Kireei has a beautiful piece of eye-candy along the top of their site for Advent.
    7. And I love this musical Christmas from sigridhaas,com that I found, many thanks to mermeladadenaranjasamargas.blogspot.com

    I would love to go on… but need to start the day already!!!

    So that’s us – Have Fun!!!

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Tags: Holiday Crafts · Tuesday Art Task

14 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Maria // Dec 3, 2009 at 10:09 am

    Beautiful, as always.

    1kiss.

  • 2 se7en // Dec 3, 2009 at 11:29 am

    Hi M, Thank-you, glad you liked it. Thank-you for blogging about our postcards – love it!!! And Thank-you for the musical advent calendar I added it to my list on this post!!! So Three Thank-yous!!! Have a lovely day!!!

  • 3 Kate // Dec 3, 2009 at 10:56 pm

    THANK YOU!! I just bought two poster boards today in an attempt to not completely forfeit my big advent calendar idea, but I was still trying to figure out how on earth to make pockets out of paper — envelopes, of course! How could I not think of that?! Thanks for making my life MUCH easier! :-) Enjoy your Advent calendar!

  • 4 se7en // Dec 3, 2009 at 11:25 pm

    Hay K, So glad I could help… I think Advent calendars have literally taken years off my life as I have plotted and planned huge projects always starting to think about it on 1 December… (Don’t want to start too soon or anything!!!)… Great elaborate sewing projects reduced to paper chains by the 24th as I never get round to them. This year I decided to get the kids to help and it went so quickly as they brainstormed away!!! Aha keeping it simple plus the energy of youth – a winning combination!!!

  • 5 katherinemarie // Dec 4, 2009 at 5:44 am

    What a fun and fantastic way to CELEBRATE Christmas!!!!!!!!

  • 6 se7en // Dec 4, 2009 at 6:54 am

    Hi K-M, there is a lot of scheming and whispering going on and they have just discovered that Christmas is so looming… L ittle things are being added to the wishlist and heaps of ideas added to the tasks!!! Lots of Fun!!! Hope you have a great weekend!!!

  • 7 Julie K in Taiwan // Dec 7, 2009 at 2:24 am

    Awesome advent calendar. We ended up buying two chocolate ones this year (a first for my kids) and Jaylene suggested that we open them every other day so that all four of us can eat a chocolate. I was impressed with her generosity. Makes up for the fact that the entire time we decorated the tree she said, “are we done? Can I go? Can I go now?” hahahaha

  • 8 se7en // Dec 7, 2009 at 8:28 am

    Hi JK, I am so glad you liked it!!! That is very sweet about the chocolates – I know what would happen in our house a grinch (called the mother person) would sneak through them ALL on Day 0 and just tell them that the point of an Advent calendar like this would be to open the windows – like why on earth would there be anything inside those windows!!!

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