Advent calendars are a fun way to help your kids count down the days until Christmas or any other holiday or special event. Traditionally, Advent begins on the fourth Sunday before Christmas. But you can jump in and start anytime during the month. All of the simple Advent calendars shown here can be made from scratch using items you already have sitting around the house.
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Hershey Kisses Advent Calendar
Help your kids count down the days until Christmas with this yummy homemade Advent calendar.
You will need 25 Hershey Kisses or other festive, individually wrapped candies, plastic kitchen wrap, and ribbon. Roll out a strip of plastic wrap and place the candies an inch apart on it in a line. Trim the wrap leaving a couple of inches extra. Fold the plastic wrap over candies. Tie each treat off with a ribbon.
For an extra touch, place notes in each section or tie them to the ribbons between each... candy. You can make these notes 25 reasons why you love your kids, or 25 reasons why you're proud of them. In this way, the calendar serves two purpose—counting down to Christmas Day, and reinforcing with your kids how much you love and care about them.
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Good Deed Advent Jar
Fill a simple Mason jar with good deeds you can do together between now and Christmas. Make sure to tailor the jobs to your kids' ages, and make a different jar for each child. Alternatively, fill a jar with good deeds you can to together for the community.
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Paper Chain Advent Calendar
This is another easy Advent calendar for children. Simply make a paper chain out of 25 strips of red or green construction paper. Or, consider using strips of old wrapping paper.
Inside each link, you could even write a verse that tells part of the Christmas story. Or, to encourage your children to think beyond themselves, consider writing an idea inside each link for a mini-service project. For example, one day's project might be making a Christmas card for someone in a nursing home. Another... day's project might be clearing off the snow from your neighbor's car.
Be creative and see what ideas you come up with for supplementing this simple children's Advent calendar.
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Cut out a tree shape or paint one on a piece of plywood. Then attach 25 candies or candy canes, tied with ribbons. You can include 25 notes with compliments or good deed suggestions for your kids.
If you are up to using fabric, make the tree out of green felt. Then cut squares of other colors of felt and attach them by sewing or glue to make 25 pockets. You can place a candy, note, or small toy in each pocket. Your kids can help decorate the pockets with numbers in sequins, glitter, ribbon, or... puff pens.Continue to 5 of 5 below.
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Santa's Beard Advent Calendar
Print an outline of Santa and have your kids glue one cotton ball onto the image each day during December. His beard will grow and it will be nice and bushy for Christmas.