Friday, December 2, 2011

Our {homemade} Christmas Advent

We had a great trip to Arkansas and finished our visit off with a family birthday party for Harbor
{more than three cupcakes on an island this time! Yippee!}
and had Thanksgiving with David's family.
Our drive home took 17 hours and poor David only got four hours of sleep before having to go to work in the morning. I prayed so hard for him all day that he would be safe back at work!
It was a bit crazy, but we never once regretted our trip. : )

Christmas has arrived!
We have had tons of projects going on around here, but I wanted to share our Advent first.

I gathered 25 Christmas books and thankfully, we didn't have to buy any.

I printed numbers and cut double layers of card stock to mount them.
I made sure that Christmas day itself was the story of Jesus' birth from Harbor's bible.

All the days preceding Christmas are also books about who Jesus is and His birth.

I kept the Christmas books about snow, Santa, and Christmas trees at the beginning of Advent to really bring home the concept that those things are fun and fine, but Christmas is really about Jesus.

Harbor and I spent a good hour wrapping each book and tagging it.
It was a fun project for him to help with.

He is just old enough now to understand that we open one book per night and read it as a family.

I like it for three reasons:

1. Harbor loves opening gifts and this makes him so excited to be able to open a new "gift" every night!
I think it will help keep him away from the presents under the tree!

2. It teaches him about Jesus Christ and the real reason for the season.

3. It provides our family a chance every night to snuggle up and do something together.
It allows for so many teachable moments!

My Christmas shelves are finished, our tree is up, a slew of handmade gifts that I want to show are finished, and my Christmas cards are almost ready to mail!

Whew! I guess that means I need to start blogging every other day!  : )


  1. Your Chicago neighbor here again! (I promise to write back via email soon!)

    We did this exact same thing with Charlie this year! He is so excited to open gifts and see what the new packages hold! We also didn't have to buy any books!

    Phew! :) Keep the great ideas coming!

  2. What a wonderful idea! I will pass this along to my daughter-in-law. Thank you for sharing.

  3. That is a great idea! I love it! Mary-Kate would love that!

  4. oh that is so cute! I love family traditions and that you are teaching Harbor at a young age what Christmas is truly about!

  5. I love this idea Jessica. And Harbor doesn't know what story he gets till he opens the present. And its a great way too help Harbor learn the meaning of Christmas, Christmas is Jesus birthday. And what a birthday party is it,ha!!!It easy to get caught up all the store's buying & too forget what Christmas is really about, your such a good mommy :) I'm working on my homemade gifts as well, I wanted to share some on fb but then I'd give you a early peck so I'd better not, miss & love you guys. especially Harbor. My house is too clean & quit,ha!!!! MOM

  6. This is a great idea Jessica!

  7. Jessica,
    I've been seeing all of the posts on Pinterest about different Advent Calendars and I had considered doing one myself but hadn't thought of a great way to do that yet. I'm totally in love with your idea and I may steal it for next year.

  8. I adore this idea! I'm going to look tonight to see how many CHRISTmas books we have. Love this!