Saturday, November 13, 2010

The yearly advent bags

Inspired by an amazing homeschooling Waldorf mama back in Miami, I have been using these simple advent bags to count down the days to Christmas since Kaleena was two years old.
I have actually been using the same bags every year until this years. As I have mentioned so many times already, most of our belongings are boxed and stored, and that is also true of our christmas treasures, so this year I made a new collection of bags.
I keep it really simple, I use plain paper gift bags and this time I used scrapbook paper, the first set I made I used an antique looking gift wrapping paper for the numbers.
Then on the first sunday in advent the children wake up to find these bags strung on the wall using clothespins. The first year I tied each bag with a red ribbon, and the effect was lovely, but very 
time consuming and hard for the children to get down on their own, so since then we have used clothespins.
For the most part the surprise in the bag is a project to be made together during that day, some things repeat on certain days each year. The first bag always contains candles for the advent wreath, and that day we make the wreath together, make aebleskiver ( a danish tradition of round pancake like balls), and drink hot chocolate. On the 1st of dec we they always find pine branches in the bag and that day we get our tree. One day we bake cookies, another make christmas card for family and friends, and so on. Usually each sunday will hold a little simple gift. The children love this tradition and each day wake up excited to check on the surprises of the bags.
 To make them I simple take the paper of choice cut out the numbers from one to usually thirty, each year will be a little different depending on what day christmas falls on
  glue them on
and hang them....
clearly they have not been hung yet, I would usually have them on more of a straight line as to me it looks prettier:)
~A beautiful day to you~


  1. I thought I was really late on this one,, you made new ones ours will go up soon.. of course the boys can't wait for their special little advent bags.

  2. so cute and simple! i love how they look on the line.
    have a great weekend

  3. Lovely tradition, I have to do something like this this year :)

  4. What a great idea! We are celebrating Advent this year and I was hoping to make little knitted stockings. I only have 6 knitted, so I may have to wait until next year. Any recommendations of what you fill them with for 24 days?

  5. well, last year in the dominican republic when crafting supllies were limited, I filled them with a tiny gift each day, could be a special stone, a shell, a simple necklace, of little toy, stickers.
    Usually though each day will have supplies to do a craft. One day we will make felted tree ornaments, and fleece will be in the bag, another we will make "snow flakes" for the window and perhaps a book on snowflakes will be in the bag, some days as a special treat I may put a candy cane, one day we will bake cookies and the cookie cutters will be in the bag, still another we will paint picture frame to use as presents, or make candles to use as presents...things like that...there are certainly days when I wonder what to do, and usually I keep a few special little things on hand as back up. I do not plan the full month in advance although it might make it easier if I did..
    hope that helps....

  6. Oh I love this idea, anticipation, organization, doing for others, so much in these lovely bags! I linked to this post on my FaceBook Pages:

    Waldorf Homeschool Network
    Waldorf Early Childhood ~ Bringing it Home

    Hope you'll come join us on the Waldorf Homeschool Network Blogsite:


  7. This is a brilliant idea! I am making little felt envelopes, but will probably hang them with clothespins this year.

  8. I actually enjoyed the curved line of bags against the frosty light of the windows. I have always been fascinated by advent calendars - and I do something similar to this for the children of some friends and family (secretly) every year, but only for the week before Christmas, when Mama is always the most tired of all. I don't think I'd have the energy now to be quiet so inspired as you are - not a whole month's worth. But then, my children are all flown, and that entitles me to enjoy being nothing more than your audience.

  9. what a fun tradition. Much more exciting than the little callendars filled with cheap chocolate!

  10. This is a great idea, and you have done such a lovely job! I am wondering if I could do something like this with my PreK class. Maybe each family could prepare a bag for one day of Advent? It could include a little item for the nature table or a picture from the birth of Jesus. Thank you for the wonderful idea and your lovely blog! : )

  11. This is a beautiful idea! I love the idea of providing supplies or a "hint" for an activity to do together.

  12. I love the simplicity of this! Those bags look gorgeous! Just featured you!

  13. i finally did it! thank you for this lovely idea!

  14. these are fantastic in their simplicity! i have made calendars in the past but i love the idea of the supplies being in the bag. :)

  15. Hi Christina,
    I love this sooo doable advent calendar I have shared it with my readers. I hope lots of them come across and start enjoying your blog as much as I have.
    Ally of harrysdesk

  16. just bought my supplies i'm thinking about how to make my numbers...any hints?

  17. Kristin,
    The numbers were a bit time-consuming. I drew the numbers 0 through 9 on a thicker card board, cut them out, and copied onto my chosen paper.
    Hope that helps.


Thank you for stopping by, I love to know you were here and enjoy comments so much.

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.