Advent has arrived and the Christmas countdown has begun! Tonight we will light the first candle on our Advent Wreath, draw names for our Christkindl just like we did last year, and unwrap our first book after our family Rosary and Christmas Novena! I ♥ Advent!
|My St. Andrew Chaplet from Mary Devotions|
The past few years I have shared some of my "Fun Finds for Advent." I had every intention of finishing up this year's post last Monday or Tuesday before our guests arrived for Thanksgiving, but I just wasn't able to squeeze it in... Even though it is a little late, here is what we are adding to our usual traditions for this Advent!
#1: Wise Men ADVENTures
Inspired once again by Catholic Inspired, we are going to be enjoying some Wisemen Adventures this Advent! The Wise Men had one last game of Farkle to finish last night before they set out to search for the Christ Child... Our oldest two boys (who will be keeping the wise men on the move all through Advent!) are having so much fun with this already! And I couldn't resist emphasizing the "ADVENT" in Adventures. :)
It's not too late to join the fun! Put that Elf back on the shelf and pick up some Wise Men! ;) We will be using the Playmobil Wise Men, but any would work just fine. I read that Jennifer will be hosting a link-up, so be sure to take pictures each day!
#2: The Jesse Box
I also pulled out The Jesse Box! I was given this last year as a sample, but just didn't have the time to review it back then. I pulled it out this week and am so excited to use it with my children this year. (Update: You can find all the details and additional downloads, activities and lesson ideas on the website created by the makers of The Jesse Box.)
Each week we will be creating a new scene based on the Gospel Reading for the week!
#3: The New Holy Heroes Jesse Tree DVD
I'm simplifying our Jesse Tree (or perhaps I should say trees!) readings this year with the help of Holy Heroes brand new Jesse Tree DVD! The videos for each day will coordinate perfectly with our new Jesse Tree Swap ornaments as well, and I have also printed out the ornaments for the little ones to color too!
#4: Saints of Advent
Saint Nicholas from Shining Light Dolls will be making an appearance in our home this December 6th and Our Lady of Guadalupe with arrive on December 12th! Our three girls will also discover Our Lady of Knock, Our Lady of Czestochowa and Our Lady of Lourdes in their Christmas Stockings! When I originally saw these online I wasn't sure I'd like them or not, but they are just as cute as can be in person!
As cute as the vinyl dolls are, I really LOVE wooden toys! This past summer, during a special sale, I purchased some more wooden dolls from Armadillo Dreams. I've posted pictures of our sweet Santa Lucia doll in the past. St. Nicholas will arrive on December 6th and the Star Boy will join Santa Lucia on December 13th. I also had just enough in my Paypal account (from All About Learning affiliate sales - thank you!) to also purchase the Nativity Set at the discounted price! I am planning on giving that to the family during the O Antiphons for "O Emmanuel."
#5: Advent Calendars
I love that Advent begins on December 1st this year and so nicely coordinates with our favorite Advent Calendar! Along with our original Jesse Tree, this Advent Calendar (pictured above) was one of our very first Advent traditions... It is still a favorite!
This year, since Advent doesn't often land on December 1st, I did something I have never done before and bought a few
totally secular fun Advent Calendars for the children. Originally I had just bought the Playmobil Winter Wonderland calendar (for Snuggles and Bud to share), but with the great sales this past week I added the two lego calendars (for the four older children to share) as well, along with a chocolate calendar for my husband and Rose!
(*all way over priced at the moment...)
"Mama! Deer, Deer!" Yep, I knew he would love that! :)
#6: A New Family Puzzle
Our family really loves to assemble puzzles during Advent! In 2010 we assembled the Our Lady of Guadalupe Puzzle. In 2011 the kids loved The Nativity in the Woods Puzzle, followed by the gorgeous Holy Family Jigsaw Puzzle and the They Come Bearing Gifts Puzzle for Epiphany. Last year we assembled the beautiful Glorious Nativity 1,000 Piece Jigsaw Puzzle and this lovely stained glass puzzle.
This year we are going to assemble "The Invitiation" - a gorgeous Noah's Ark themed 1,000 piece puzzle (along with this Ark-Full Animals Puzzle or this Animal Alphabet for the younger ones) to go along with some of our Jesse Tree readings! I'm also still considering this lovely 12 Days of Christmas Puzzle for during the 12 days of Christmas.... So pretty!
#7: Celebrating Advent and Christmas with Children
Celebrating Advent and Christmas with Children is a brand new book by Colleen Rooney which was just released last month! Colleen kindly offered to send me a review copy along with a second copy to offer to one of my visitors here at Shower of Roses!
It is such a beautiful book, packed with great ideas and recipes, and is a welcomed addition to my collection. I look forward to trying some of her ideas with my own family soon!
Amazon is currently offering Celebrating Advent and Christmas with Children at a 41% discount, you can currently purchase the Kindle version for only $3.99, or you can enter the giveaway below to possibly win a FREE copy here at Shower of Roses!
Check out the additional "Fun Finds For Advent" in the archives:
I hope you all have a very blessed Advent!