Advent, the time of preparation before Christmas, begins on Sunday, November 29. During the twenty-six days until December 25, we study, pray, meditate, and immerse ourselves in the story of the longed for Savior, Jesus. Advent calendars count the days until Christmas. I like to think of the calendars as a countUP to Christmas because each day I write, doodle, and color. I add a daily patch of prayer to the emerging Advent quilt.
With plain white stickers–round or square–children and adults can create an Advent Calendar. Use a piece of wrapping paper or poster board as the backdrop. Each day, write an Advent word to ponder or the name of a person to pray for. Doodle or draw around the word or name. Add color. Pray with words and/or with the marks and color. You can also just doodle or draw on the stickers with no words. When you are finished place the sticker on the wrapping paper and watch the countUP to Christmas.
Here is an example from a few years ago–the finished version and a closeup of some of the 3.33″ stickers. I used Advent words and phrases on this calendar.
Advent calendar templates and ways to use them are available on my November 6 blog post. Below are the templates for this year. You can download them from the .jpg or .pdf links on the November 6 post.
Make an Advent calendar clothesline. Pin twenty-six small envelopes on a strong piece of string or ribbon with clothespins. Each day ask someone in your household to pray in color on the envelope. Use an Advent word or a person’s name as described above. At the end of the day gather your loose change (or dollar bills) from pockets, wallets, and countertops and put the money in the envelope of the day. At the end of Advent make a family decision about where you will donate the money–a local or national charity, your church….