Thursday, December 1, 2011

Our Magnetic Advent Calendar

Creating an advent calendar was a family affair this year. It was very easy and a lot of fun. Today is the first day of our advent calendar, but don't worry if you've been wanting to make one and just haven't yet. You could make one as a family tonight! You could even have the first day's activity to be "make an advent calendar." That's something I would totally do. Haha.

Making The Advent Calendar:

I quickly sketched out the shape of a Christmas tree on a large poster board. It doesn't have to be perfect. Then we got to work on painting it. R did most of the painting because he enjoys it so much. He did a really good job! Then just cut it out once it's dry. I traced a small cup for the ornaments. R decided he'd rather color those with markers so that's what we did. We each got our own page of ornaments to color and decorate. We cut them out and glued them onto our tree. Since we were all working together it didn't take long at all. We also made a star for on top. Next, we glued a few button magnets onto the back of our tree cut out. One at the very top, one on the trunk, and one on a few of the branches to make sure it stayed put.

Making The Day Marker:

We used a recycled crayon snowflake for the magnetic marker. We made the cute recycled crayons and glued a magnetic button to the back of one. Each day we will move the marker to the new day and read our planned activity from a list I have printed out. And because it's a crayon, we could even use it to mark the activity off of the list. I did it this way so that our calendar may be used again next year, even if we'd like to change the activities.

Making recycled crayons is very easy. We just peeled a bunch of our broken crayons and put the pieces in a silicone snowflake muffin tin. (We also made Christmas trees just because. :) We used one color per snowflake with varying shades. So all of the blue crayons went in one, the green in another, and so on. You put the muffin tin in a 200 degree oven for five to ten minutes or until the crayons have melted completely. Carefully remove the muffin tin to avoid sloshing and let cool. After the crayons have cooled and completely hardened you can just pop them out. R loves making crayons and coloring with the specially made sets.

The Creative Christmas Countdown:

I'm not going to share the advent activities we have planned just yet. Many of ours coincide with the fabulous Creative Christmas Countdown and I don't want to spoil anything for those that are reading that like surprises. I will be sharing our advent activities most days, so please check back for some fun holiday activities! Also, if you are planning on following along with the online advent calendar and would like to be more prepared or use them in your own calendar, you can find a free printable at the above link. Lots of fun in store this month!

Let Kids Create has the activity for day one of the Creative Christmas Countdown, and it's a fantastic way to kick off the season! Be sure to check out her post for an activity that will leave you smiling and creating warm memories each day until Christmas!

What are some of your favorite advent activities?


  1. I love this Advent Calendar! It sounds like you and R spent really special time together making it. I also love the fact that you made it reusable with that adorable snowflake crayon day marker.
    Little R looks so happy, so cute!

  2. Thank you so much, Aleacia. We did have a good time, and daddy even got in on the coloring. I want to hopefully make a more permanent one next year, but if I don't, at least we'll be able to use this one again. :)

  3. I love the simple, no-fuss and yet meaningful way you celebrate advent. It has been a pleasure to watch so far and I am anticipating seeing each beautiful day unfold. Thanks for letting us have a peek.

  4. We haven't had much luck with melting our crayons. I don't think we bake them long enogh. Your picture is really nice and your little guy is adorable.

  5. Phyllis, you have such a way with words, and a knack for making me smile. Thank you so much for coming back and reading my posts, and for taking the time to leave such sweet comments. Thank you, thank you, thank you!

    Thank you so much for stopping by, Bethany. I think the first time we tried the crayons it took awhile longer because I was constantly opening the oven to check on them. I couldn't wait! And thank you for the nice comment!


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