Saturday, December 7, 2013

Have you started an official Christmas countdown in your family? Do you do any special activities each year leading up to Christmas? If not, maybe this is your year to start! Doing things...making memories and starting traditions make the countdown to Christmas morning a treasured journey rather than a rushed event. You probably already have unspoken traditions in place like putting up the tree the day after Thanksgiving, or making cookies, but when you call attention to the little things that you already do or were planning to do, it seems so much more special and that's how memories are formed.

In my house, we've been counting down the days until Christmas on a calendar, but again, I wanted to incorporate some activities and lessons that would help prolong this all too short season. I wanted a daily reminder of the real reason for Christmas in addition to having intentional family fun. Let’s face it, we are all pretty busy and if we don’t schedule or plan for it {even fun things}, it might not happen.


There are tons and tons of DIY advent calendars and activities on the web, but because I had something specific in mind, I decided not to recreate something I saw {which I do frequently though}. Instead, I created a Christmas Countdown Folder. And because I laminated the pages, it is something that could be used again next year if our family enjoys it. Interested? Keep reading…
Supplies Needed:
Folder {like your standard manila folder}
Tape or Glue
Printer {if you want to use pages I've created with numbers and activities}
Craft paper or colored paper {optional}
Velcro rings {optional}
Step 1:  I wanted a Christmas-y background on my folder so I picked up this Holiday cardstock from Michaels. I laminated 2 sheets and used double sided tape to stick one sheet of paper to each side of the folder.

Step 2:  Print, laminate, and cut out the numbers. Remember, I laminate things for durability but you don’t have to.

Step 3:  Print, laminate, and cut out the Bible verses, activities and “days until Christmas” label. You can write out your activities on a notecard and change them each day.
Step 4:  I wanted a red background for my numbers and “days until Christmas” label so I cut out and taped a piece to my holiday paper. Then, I used a Velcro dot to adhere the number to my red background. I put a Velcro dot on the back of each number so my children can easily change them each day. If you don’t want to use Velcro dots, you can just use tape.

Step 5:  Just pick a verse and activity for each day. I just used double sided tape for this. We will write in the number date for each day {if you laminate your paper, you can easily write and erase with a dry erase marker} and then read the verse and complete the activity.

That’s it!

I plan to start this on December 10, so my countdown begins with 15 days until Christmas. There are so many different things you can do with this so if you are even slightly interested, please tweak it to fit your family’s style and personality. You can write your own personal activities on a notecard each day along with a Bible verse or anything else you deem relevant. There are really so many variations possible with this.

**All of the activities are not necessarily directly related to Christmas and many are things we do any way…without a special countdown folder. But remember, the point is to be intentional and draw attention to the wonderful things you’re doing with your family. As the countdown progresses, you may think of different activities for your family so change and update as needed. I've already got some new activities in mind other than what I've typed out already.

**I used these these Bible verses but of course you can substitute as needed.

**Single or childless? You can still totally do something like this by adjusting the activities. We all need to celebrate each day…no matter what…

And….be sure to take pictures so you can capture these memories!
What do you think of this idea? What are some “must do” activities for you an your family this Christmas season?

1 comment:

  1. I really like this idea. I'm kind of behind for this holiday season. Maybe I'll try it next year!