11.30.2008

advent re-invent

adventcalendar

So Holden asked me yesterday when "that special day" is going to be here. I asked him to clarify since a *special day* to a 4 1/2 year old could mean anything from Christmas to garbage day to that one glorious day a year when we wash our car. He replied, "you know, that very special day when we get lotsa stuff." And my heart immediately sank to my toes.

What I wanted to do next was talk his little ear off about commercialism and consumerism and sit him down in front of this and this and this (thanks julie!) and force into his impressionable little mind the idea that Christmas is about more than just 'getting' or 'stuff' or blahdy blahdy blah...

But thankfully, I did none of those things. I sat on my hands and said nothing.

adventcalendar4

Instead, my brain took over and remembered these 24 little Christmas-colored opportunities to focus on giving rather than receiving, on spending time together rather than spending money, and on the importance of appreciation, friendship, gratitude and any other concepts of value that can fit into those 2" by 3" envelopes (which is quite alot, I think).

adventcalendar2

I have a little list going, including things like Make Glitter Pinecones! Donate to our local Food Bank! and Candyland Marathon Day! Today began big with picking an animal donation via Heifer International in lieu of gifts for the adults in our family. Because what's more fun than giving a family a water buffalo for Christmas, I ask you?

When we were done picking our animals, Holden asked if he could give some money from his piggy bank to the kids in the pictures on the HI website and my heart rose back up above my kneecaps.

15 comments:

lisa s said...

great ideas.
candyland marathon day? i'm there

stepstep said...

heavy my lil' butterbean...heavy! ;)

A Spoonful Of Sugar said...

Your advent ideas are so meaningful - it can be hard to teach your children the true meaning of Christmas when they are surrounded by the commercialism at every turn. Well done!

Paper Dolls for Boys said...

Your advent calendar looks GREAT! Are there some up in your shop? Really cool!

I love what you're filling it with and what your kiddos will take away from it! We do something similar with the endless nights of Hanukah. Game night, museum trip, you make dinner menu and help, extra story at bedtime etc. I try to sprinkle those in with the onslaught of STUFF, which we also do to the point of excess.

I'd love to read your full list when you're through to the special day that you get lots of gifts! ;)

patricia said...

Oh, look how cute that advent calendar came out, with the big ric rac and the swirly font on the numbers!

Hold on to your heart. Our kids can pull them up and down, but when kids have grown up in a thoughtful home, everyone's hearts usually end up in the right place.

Unless, of course, they say things like Holden that melt our hearts first. :-)

kraftykash said...

The advent claendar turned out great! Very good ideas too! I have some things brewing in my head for my kids. We will see. :)

Ashley said...

Heifer is such a great program, we raised money at our school and our classroom made a donations to a family. The kiddos LOVED it. Cute advent!

Philigry said...

love this post. love it. how very sweet.

Simply Stork said...

how fun :o)

~simply~

Alissa said...

Yes! Yes! Those are just the sorts of fun activities our advent calendar has too! Not glitter pinecones though. That's great, I think I'm going to swap out one pancakes for breakfast one or something for that. I'm so excited about doing this because it's made ME think about what sort of crafts and activities I want to do with the kids. Next year I'm hoping to make mine as beautiful as your too ;)

Amy @ Park City Girl said...

Looks beautiful - such a great post Melissa. Your little man is very sweet - he picks up more by your actions than any lecture :)

Jessica said...

I have a brand spankin' new game of candyland sitting right here...I love your advent calendar and all your ideas about how to celebrate the true meaning of Christmas.

peppersprouts said...

I love this idea! what a great take on the advent calendar!

Katherine said...

Wow, what a beautiful idea. And giving a waterbuffalo has GOT to appeal to a young boy, how funny and wonderful!

The Fruid said...

I love the colors you used to make this! Beautiful work!