our 2012 advent calendar

2012 advent calendar
2012 advent calendar
quick and easy advent calendar in the works
after posting this above photo on instagram last friday night, i have had a few requests to share a tutorial on our 2012 advent calendar.  this is an easy project and uses on-hand materials, but i can share a few tips that might be helpful. 

materials used:
brown paper bags
white notecards
jingle bells
number stamps and ink
wired picture frame

 2012 advent calendar
inside each bag, i placed 3 pieces of chocolate and an activity written on a notecard.   i folded the bags in thirds, wrapped with twine, and tied them off with jingle bells.

i was inspired by this image found via pinterest, and originally planned on stringing these bags across our giant chalkboard.  i would have written the numbers in chalk under the bags, to be revealed as each was removed from the string.  but i couldn't easily think of a way to install the strings without putting holes in our walls or chalkboard.  then i remembered these frames sitting in the garage waiting to repurposed for this house.  our 2011 advent calendar was strung on them too.  i chose the largest frame and hung it on a bare wall in our dining room.

i clipped the bags to the wired frame with clothespins and placed a stamped number underneath.  i quickly added the "start here" and "merry christmas" signs at the last minute to give my kiddos some guidance.  the evergreen sprig was my final festive touch. 

2012 advent calendar
here are the activities we included in this year's calendar:
decorate the tree, dinner and pony rides with friends, make snowflakes, multiple pizza + movie nights, buy gifts for church Christmas store, bake and deliver cookies, Old Towne Holiday Stroll, a Christmas concert, make gingerbread houses, early Christmas present delivered, make ornaments, wrap and send gifts/cards, work the church Christmas store, drive up to the mountains and play in snow, family game night, celebrate Gia's birthday, drive around and look at lights, surprise weekend trip!!!, and Christmas Eve service

the bags are discreetly labeled on the back (in code), so i can switch around activities the night before if our plans need to change.  (or i can open up the bag and switch out the notecard if needed.)  in past years, we included our advent reading with our calendar, but that makes switching things up trickier.  i was planning on just keeping track of the readings on my own, but then dear heather made up this advent chain!  now we will use this.  thanks, friend!

if you didn't start an advent countdown on the 1st, perhaps you can put together a 12 days of christmas countdown for later this month.

this season of advent is so special.  i am thankful for a simplified, yet meaningful observance.

2012 advent calendar


nicole i said...

love it and love the flexibility of switching things around. and love the wire frame holder thingamajig.
happiest of advent to you and may the spirit of new be with you as you great new traditions in a new city with new friends.
all the love in the world.

Shannon said...

I love the simplicity and flexibility and loveliness! Merry Christmas Annalea!

Mary_Krause said...

love this, annalea.
so simple and beautiful.
you are SO wise to label the bags!

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