Easy DIY Advent Calendar
It’s not too late to make an advent calendar to help countdown the days until Christmas with your kids!
Time Needed: minimum (perfect for us last minute moms)
Budget Needed: nada
Supplies Needed: 24 clothepins and either string or cardboard (paper plate works)
If you already have clothespins, you can easily turn them into an advent calendar. If you don’t have clothespins, grab some here quick: 50 Wooden Clothespins for $5.99 with Amazon Prime.
Write the number on the front of each clothespin and write an activity on the back.
Make a clothespin wreath advent calendar: clip the clothespins in a circle, around a circle of cardboard.
Or run a string along the wall or window and clip the 25 clothespins to the line with the number showing.
Each day pull down the appropriate clothespin and see what activity is on the back.
You can paint the clothespins festive colors if you are feeling ambitious. You can glue fancy paper or cloth to the front of them, or use decorative tape. These touches make all the difference.
In our house, the kids tend to be involved in all the creative decisions and here’s how they decided to do ours:
Activities for your Advent Calendar
An activity advent calendar can help reduce clutter (do your kids really need 25 more little thingies?) and can also be cheaper if these were activities you would be doing anyway. For me it’s always a win to focus more on experiences than stuff.
Activity Advent Calendar List:
- Decorate tree.
- Decorate home for Christmas.
- Make gingerbread.
- Make ornaments.
- Make Christmas cards for family or friends.
- Make paper snowflakes and hang around the house
- Build a Snowman.
- Make christmas cookies.
- Bring Christmas treats to a neighbor or loved one.
- Tour Christmas Lights.
- Ice skating.
- Movie and Cocoa night.
- Go caroling.
- Bring cards/treat to a hospital or childrens ward.
- Christmas Party with friends.
- Read Christmas stories.
- Make caramel popcorn.
- String popcorn and cranberries for the tree or a garland.
- Christmas parade.
- Fireplace s’mores.
- Watch the Nutcracker (live or video).
- Make a video of the family singing a Christmas Carol to share with loved ones.
- Make a peanut butter pinecone bird feeder.
- Make Cookies for Santa.
Giving Advent Calendar
Bring the focus of the holidays back to giving by making an advent calendar of giving activities:
- Make Christmas Cards and give them to strangers (at the grocery store, etc).
- Buy 2 or 3 non perishable canned goods and take to a local food bank.
- Hold the door for someone.
- Make gifts for mailman, garbage collectors, etc (could be a picture, a snowflake, origami creation, cookies).
- Bake Christmas treats and deliver to neighbors, librarians, etc.
- Pick up trash somewhere that needs it.
- Paint stones with messages of love and leave where someone will find it.
- Help someone in the family with their chores.
- Donate games or puzzles to a childrens hospital.
- Buy or pick out a like-new toy to give to someone who won’t get many gifts. Find your local Toys for Tots dropoff.
- Smile at everyone you see today.
- Find extra winter hats, gloves, scarves that your family isn’t using and bring it to a homeless person or shelter.
- Make pretty bookmarks and leave them in library books for the next recipient to find.
- Give a compliment to a stranger.
- Bring hot cocoa to a Salvation Army bell ringer on a cold day.
- Wrap gifts for family members.
- Bring a donation of petfood to an animal shelter.
- Write a message of cheer in chalk on a sidewalk.
- Feed the birds.
- Send a thank you note to someone who has been kind to you this year.
- Bring a meal to a homeless person, or volunteer at a shelter.
- Donate clothes and toys you no longer need to the Salvation Army.
- Write someone a note telling them how much you like them.
- Leave a holiday card on someone’s car.