Monday, November 30, 2009

"buy nothing new" advent calendar

On Sunday I got the advent calendar ready to go. I love being organized and ahead of the game when it comes to things like this. It's so much more stressful for the mama to pull everything together on the 5th or 6th or even the 15th of December (yes, I have done that before!). Last year we switched to a type of advent calendar that is less materialistic and hopefully more fun and magical. Instead of getting a treat or gift, each day the boys will take down a wrapped item to be placed in the "Christmassy Village." All these items are either from around the house or are Christmassy trinkets I collected last year from my stash and my mother's. I hope it's not disappointing to the boys, but there is nothing new here at all this year. I contemplated making some felt elves (and didn't get around to it) or buying a couple new wooden figures (but opted not to). Hopefully it will still be totally fun for them to unwrap an item and place it in the village.
I did go thrifting for some items to create the village itself. The little ceramic houses are all newly thrifted and most of them have lights that work (I need to find one more light--any ideas?). It's really fun to light the village in the evening.
The barn is my mom's--isn't it pretty? The little tree is also newly thrifted. I love giving these Christmas items a new life in our home.

Am looking forward to starting this Tuesday morning!

12 comments:

Meg said...

It all looks great, and I wouldn't worry about the boys not having anything "new" to add--I think the excitement of building the village will be plenty!

I am doing an advent calendar for the first time this year. I'm going to use a mix of things (like pieces of the nativity set) and activities (like put on our Christmas pillowcases, bake cookies, watch a Christmas movie). I think the kids will like it. I know they'll like the hershey kiss that will come each day.

Joy said...

Hey I recognize those Haba animals. :) We have the same nativity. I think your advent calendar idea is a lovely one. I'm sure the boys will be thrilled, new or not. I hope you'll show us the village at the end of advent!

Sarah said...

You can usually buy those corded light bulbs with the other Christmas stuff at some of the chain type stores. I know for sure the dreaded Wal-Mart usually sells them, not sure about Target. It's also possible I have seen them in Walgreens of all places.

Jennifer said...

I think it's great, and how fun to keep adding to the scene. Isn't it a thrill when you can find exactly what you are looking for at the thrift store? Great finds.

theprairiegirl.com

Laura said...

Love your advent calendar idea for this year! Sounds PERFECT!

Poppy and Mei said...

Fabulous!
We count down 5 days before as we have two birthdays before-hand.
I pop in nativity scene bibs & bobs & by the time Christmas is here, so is baby Jesus...XXxx.

Deb said...

I love this idea. I saw your village last year. I think I'll have to look out some bits and try for one next year. It's so great.

Kelsey B. said...

What a fun tradition, this is a great way for your kids to enjoy the calendar year after year.

Lisa Renata said...

I love this idea! I loved it so much I linked you in my blog.

You really have come up with some great ways to spend less, use what you have and enjoy every bit of it. Love it.

I think I just might need to borrow your tradition for next year. If you don't mind of course.

Andrea said...

I love this idea. We wrap up all (or most) of our holiday/Christmas books and open up one a day leading up to Christmas.

plantmyappletree said...

What an amazing idea. I hate seeing all this plastic-toy-chocolate-"kitsch"-Advent Calendars in the shops and yours is just... lovely... I am sure it will plant fond memories with your kids, not like the fast-forgotten toys.

I have a (German) Advent Calendar that shows a photo, a poem, a bible quote or else each day and I love it (they publish a new one each year).

hanna said...

I think this is a fantastic idea. I think I might do this next year. I love all your litte pieces you have collected.