Counting down the days leading up to Christmas is a tradition in our household. Instead of purchasing a commercially available advent calendar, we make our own from natural materials.
Little Eco drew pictures of things she is grateful for on each stone using permanent paint pens. Each stone is numbered and corresponds to a chosen activity.
In previous years I’ve chosen quick nature play or craft activities that we could do as a family. This year Little Eco chose the activities herself. I asked her what she wants to do more of and felt a pang of guilt when she told me “I want to do crafty stuff with you, like we used to.” Ouch – she’s right. We used to do a lot more creative play together, but since she’s started school I’ve neglected craft.
To help her choose the activities, I set her up in front of my ‘‘creative play for littlies” Pinterest board. I’ve saved dozens of links to creative play ideas I had planned to do. But like many “pinners” - I haven’t actually gotten around to the “doing”. At least the person who named one of their boards “Awesome things I will never take the time to actually make” was being a tad more realistic than me.
Over 24 days we’ll create nature crowns, corn husk dolls, clay owls and a woven skipping rope. I’ve set aside an hour each afternoon for us to create together. I’m not too concerned about completing every activity. It’s more about the process than the outcome (thankfully - because she's been pretty ambitious with her list).
Is there something you love doing that you don’t do enough of? Perhaps you could do your own creative countdown to Christmas? Think about what you truly enjoy doing – and do more of that.
Originally published in my Newcastle Herald column 'Less is More' 30th November 2013.
Here's our Creative countdown to Christmas list
- Build an insect hotel.
- Create a sock caterpillar.
- Make a nature crown.
- Weave a fairy rug.
- Make a toilet roll owl.
- Paint and play rock dominoes.
- Make a Japanese flying carp.
- Learn how to use a sewing machine.
- Make a recycled tin can windsocks.
- Create a dancing marionette.
- Craft a tissue box monster.
- Make a bow and arrow.
- Weave a jump rope.
- Make egg carton love bugs.
- Paint a bug tic-tac-toe.
- Make a cute clay owl.
- Make a corn husk owl.
- Create a corn husk doll.
- Make a changing faces toilet roll doll.
- Make a dream catcher.
- Sew a kangaroo.
- Sew another kangaroo.
- Weave a friendship bracelet.
- Make a toilet roll snowman.
Wishing you a calm and creative countdown to Christmas.