Our Christmas Advent Activity Calendar | Virginia Photographer

Last year many of my Instagram followers requested that I share my activity list this year so that's exactly what I'm doing.  

This will be our 5th year doing an activity advent calendar.  My husband and I LOVE Christmas and we had a few traditions we did every year with Ava, our then only child.  In 2011, I decided I wanted to make an advent calendar so that each day we could do something together.

I made our advent calendar out of a drawer organizer I found at Michaels.  It had little boxes which I covered with scrapbook paper and stickers.  The boxes have numbers on the outside and then after we open the box it is flipped over to reveal a little Christmas scene inside.  The first year I wrote down a few activities and then went to back to Michaels and bought little $1 crafts so we would either do an activity or a craft.  As the years have gone on and now having 2 kiddos I have had to change some things.  I try to keep some favorites and alternate in a few new things every year.  I now print the activities on little tickets and place the tickets in the little boxes.  There are so many fun advent calendar ideas out there so be creative and have fun. 

Here is this year's line up:

Most of the crafts we do were either found on pinterest or are things I did as a kid.  We did snowman bowling for the first time last year and the kids LOVED it.  I saved the snowman cups and we are doing that one early so they can play it over and over.  Elf yourself is hilarious....basically cut out little legs, arms, body, etc on construction paper and print off a large picture of them. I cut out the face and they attach the various elf body parts and decorate them.  Super cute...it's all over pinterest...check it out.

The bird feeders we make are the ones where you mix birdseed with unflavored gelatin and put the mixture in christmas cookie cutters.  It dries and then you can hang them...the birds love them.

Here are a few things we have done in the past but are not doing this year.

  • salt dough ornaments
  • cinnamon dough ornaments
  • handprint snowman ornaments
  • painted christmas canvases
  • Christmas volcanos (literally baking soda and red/green vinegar...the kids love it)
  • Christmas play
  • Go see the Nutcracker
  • Breakfast with Santa (we still might do this but it's not "scheduled")
  • Drive around and see lights 
  • make a felt Christmas tree (we still have ours so we don't redo it) 
There are so many fun crafts and games out there.  We use to do more out of the house but now that school and homework is part of the equation I have found weeknights are easier if we just do crafts or inside games.

The biggest tip I can give is to leave room to be flexible.  I don't number our tickets so I have the ability to swap out activities at the last minute.  You never know what might come up.  

The most important part is to have fun and spend time together.  When they are grown it won't be the gifts that they remember the most.  It will be the memories of the time spent together.

Follow along with our Christmas adventures on Instagram!! 

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