Every year. Seriously. Every year, I forget about Advent.
I know this makes sense with the whole ‘not being christian in the strictest sense’ of my belief system, but something inside me still remembers the glitter that was on the pictures of the manger scenes of my youth, the joy at opening the little windows, the anticipation and then slight dissapointment that it was always Jesus on the 24th, plus a vague sense of wrong as I was pretty sure he was born on the 25th, as well as the envy of my friends who had chocolate advent calanders.
My bubs have had a Pooh Bear (the ORIGINAL one) calander that lasted several years, was followed by a chocloate one, a year without one, or maybe two or three of those then last year when i realised halfway through advent and printed off a template from the internet and glued it together…
This year, thanks to the reminding of Nomie of “Under the Yardarm” – a highly reccomended blog, I again madly searched the net for advent calander templates and came across this idea on “About”.
The Advent Jar.
Essentailly you decorate a Jar, or not, and fill it with 24 peices of paper, upon which you write 24 good things for your children to do, the children do them, then leave the jar out for Santa Claus who places gifts in it in return for their doing good things. I decided to add numbers on the lid for them to cross off to get the whole count down thing happening.
I like this idea – it is non-denominational, appeals nicely to my sense of Karma and has some great opportunities for encouraging good things (such as ‘read 20 pages of a book’) as well as the random altruistic (‘find a toy you don’t like any more and wrap it to donate to another child for christmas’ – this will need to be carefully monitored as I am pretty sure no child wants to unwrap a disembodied bionicle arm on Christmas day)
I also got to include things I want them to do more of, yet I can never get them to do, such as ‘play a game your brother or sister wants to play for at least half an hour’ or ‘ write down five good things about you‘.
And somewhere buried amongst the green paper is ‘clean your room’, ‘make your bed‘ and ‘make lunch for dad‘
HO! HO! HO!.