Wednesday, November 18, 2009

make a simple advent calendar this year!



By simple I mean ridiculously easy, very cheap, and at least mostly natural materials.  Oh, and I have one hour to do it while my three year old helps.  Can I get an Amen?

You'll need:
1.  Small muslin bags.  You can order them online here.  Tip- order more than 25 because your toddler will want to help and you'll probably mess up at least one.
2.  1 inch number stencils and spouncers.  Unless you have awesome handwriting like Kaite, in which case you can just use a paint brush.
3.  Acrylic paint.  Before going out for the perfect Christmas Red, check your stash.  I used brown and silver because I love the way they look together and I had them on hand.  Warning- this does not wash out of clothes but it does wash off the face and hands.
4.  Some kind of string or twine or ribbon.  I always keep a roll of twine handy so that's what I used.
5.  Small suction cup hooks to hang the whole strand on a glass surface.  If you don't have enough glass, try those command removable sticky hooks.  No need to put a hole in the wall just for a Christmas decoration.
The process:
Just lay out your bags and get to stenciling.  I use cleaned out baby food plastic containers for the paint but you can use anything.


Once they are dry, string one side of the drawstring through and hang on any flat surface.


Done!  Now some candy canes and some scripture verses or any trinkets you want go inside and you have a gift-a-day advent calendar. 


Now go get your baby because naptime is over and your preschooler has paint on her hands and face and needs to use the potty.

Acacia made flowers from coffee filters white I painted.  After the paint is dry, poke a hole in the middle and stick a pipe cleaner in.  Instant centerpiece:


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Here are some resources for more information on advent calendars, background and ideas.

5 comments:

chels said...

*sigh* tell me again why we live 50 freaking states away from each other? this is getting more depressing as the days go by. so, any chance you will be going to colorado in the next 3 weeks? i will be in the springs with my mom... gotta get out of this allergy and asthma infested city for a bit of a break. miss you! here is another very cool advent calendar idea....

http://www.rethinkingchristmas.com/?q=node/115

ciao friend!

Brandon said...

muslim bags? I thought this was an advent calender.

Gable said...

Do you know how happy I am right now after seeing your pics? Very. No, like VERY.

shannon said...

Very funny Braj. MUSLIN... it's a fabric.

Gable: I think what you really like is your niece with paint on her nose. You got her hooked, you know?!

Chels: so jealous of you in colorado! Hope you had fun with your mom and enjoyed a nice (well deserved) break. Oh, and took pictures, too. Miss you very very much.

Arica said...

Thank you so much for sharing this! I absolutely love it, and am so grateful as this tradition is new to our family; and I desperately needed something "do-able" (yet lovely to look at) for my girls asap!

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