Friday, November 30, 2007

Advent Calendar Time

Several years back, when Jacob and Faith were still little, my mother passed my childhood advent calendar down to me. I love this advent calendar--I have great childhood memories of it. My mom is not crafty in a sewing or knitting kind of way (she's more into flower arranging and table decorating), but she did make this calendar from a kit. My understanding is that it came with the appliques already done and she added the embroidery and sewed on the little rings and the backing. Then every year she would tie on little gifts or candies for me and my brothers. Sometimes it was very simple--just miniature candy canes or individual white Lifesavers, and sometimes it was more elaborate with little gifts. I remember just loving it.
This year I'm in a state of transition with how I want to do the advent calendar. I actually started collecting little gifts almost a year ago, when I was still on maternity leave with Rainer. When I checked my box to see what I had, I found that I already had almost everything I needed. Next year I want to transition more to some of the ideas given here, like "tickets" to go see the Christmas lights, drink hot cocoa by the fire, that sort of thing. So they won't expect a gift every day. Also next year, I'm phasing out the teenagers. Seems like a good time, since Jacob is graduating this year.
This year I'm using what I have, but I also collected a few things that are a bit different and cheaper. Faith is getting a perfume sample from a magazine, a lotion sample, and an Ann Patchett essay on self-reliance, also from a magazine. I really wanted to make her a Heidi headband too, from Bend the Rules Sewing, but crafting time around here is still so elusive. More hand crafted stuff is also a good idea for future in the quest to get away from plastic trinkets.

Another great resouce for Advent ideas is the Kiddley site. Tons of ideas for little gifts and for Advent calendar crafts. Check it out.

It's Friday. I'm a little bit tired, so I'm glad. When I shifted to getting up early to do my blog posts (4;30 or so) I was trying to get to bed pretty early too. But lately that part has been slipping. Not that I expect to catch up on sleep over the weekend, not with the little boys around, but at least I can "sleep in" til 6:30! Happy weekend!


Carrie said...

I think it's ok to phase out the high school graduates but I think Ben and Faith should still get to participate. You know how I am about Christmas...if you believe in Santa he will bring you a long as my children still (let me think they) believe at 22 & 16, Santa is filling their stocking. I'm going to continue putting up our advent calendar. If I quit, it might be years before I get to put it up again. Granted ours doesn't have gifts. But if it did, I would buy myself and Mark little treasures. I think it's all in the spirit of celebration and I wouldn't want to be left out at 16, not even at 40 something!

littlegreen said...

wow, you are quite the early riser, I salute you for that! Ilove the advent calendar... a fun idea!

Sarah said...

I can't believe you get up that early! That is serious dedication!

What a cute advent calendar, and so sweet that it was made by your mom and then handed down to you.

amanda said...

What a sweet little calendar, made ever the more special the second time around. I've been thinking of advent stuff all month, and here it is the last day of November and I haven't started anything yet. This is inspiring me, though. And you've given me the idea that if I really can't do anything elaborate, 24 little candy canes tied in a row would certainly have their appeal.
Enjoy sleeping in til 6:30 tomorrow, lazy bones! :P

APRIL said...

I came across your blog today! I love the advent. I am looking for ideas for next year. I am a little behind and just now becoming inspired to be crafty!

Thnaks for shariong!

Roxanne said...

Great Advent calender! Maybe someday you will hand it down to Faith and she will fill it for your grandchildren. I just buy my boys the Advent calenders with the little chocolates behind the doors. They love them- but I'm glad they don't read your blog- don't want them to know what they are missing. ;0)

Blair said...

I *love* your advent calendar. The applique on it is so fun, and I love the way the presents are attached to it. Good job!!!

jessi said...

this calendar is so great! i'm definitely hoping to inherit a few of my favorite Christmas decorations from my childhood.