Monday, 23 November 2015

Advent GIVING Box

advent calendar
I was thinking of a special advent calendar to make for my daughter this holiday season. I scoured the interweb trying to find something unique but I really couldn't find what I was looking for. When I stopped to think about, I realized I couldn't find what I was looking for because I didn't want yet another advent calendar that counts down the days until Christmas with a daily gift or treat. The idea of my daughter getting a daily present to count down the days until she gets even MORE presents didn't sit well with me. I want her to learn the importance of giving and not just receiving. So I decided to make an advent calendar that allows her to give daily. Each day starting December 1st, my daughter will remove the numbered tag and add one item that she would like to donate to the less fortunate into the box. It can be a nonperishable food item to give to the food bank, a new or very gently used toy/clothing item to donate to local shelter, a winter hat/mittens for the homeless etc. By the time December 24th rolls around, there will be 24 items to donate!!!
advent calendar
This is how I imagine the box looking as it fills up!
What a great way to celebrate this wonderful time of the year. I love that my daughter will spend each day thinking of ways to give to others. I can't wait to see the items she picks out (hopefully her baby brother won't end up in the box!).

  • Large cardboard box (I used a diaper box) or any large bin/container
  • Festive wrapping paper
  • 24 small tags (I found mine at a scrapbooking store, but you can easily make your own by cutting out small rectangles and hole punching the top)
  • Number stamps or number stickers (or a marker to write them by hand)
  • Paper straws
  • Scissors
  • Tape
  • Pen
  • Glue gun
  • Decorations (i.e. ribbon, stickers etc.)- optional

  1. Cut flaps off cardboard box.
    advent calendar
  2. Cover box with wrapping paper. 
    advent calendar
  3. Stamp numbers 1 to 24 onto paper tags.
    advent calendar
  4. Space out tags evenly on one side of the box (I made 3 rows of 8). Using a pen, mark the location of each tag.
    advent calendar
  5. Cut paper straws into 24 small pieces (approx. 3/4 of an inch).
    advent calendar

    advent calendar
  6. Using a hot glue gun, put a small amount of glue on one end of the straw piece and adhere to the marked pen spots on the box.
    advent calendar

    advent calendar
  7. Hang tags onto straw "hooks".
    advent calendar

    advent calendar
  8. Count down the days until Christmas by giving back daily:)
advent calendar
Just to sum it all up! Feel free to pin and share with others!

Alternative Calendar Ideas (if you really don't have the time to be so crafty, try using one of these ideas instead):
  • Paste the month of December (just cut it out of a calendar or print off the computer) onto one side of the box and cross out each day using a pen/marker, a bingo marker or with a cute sticker.
  • Adhere rows of string onto the box and use clothespins to clip on the days.
  • Buy 24 cheap plastic hooks from the dollar store to hang up each day.
  • Simply stick the days onto the box using tape.
  • Fringe sheets of paper, add numbers 1-24, rip off each number to count down the days (just like  flyers posted on bulletin boards with phone numbers to rip off).
Have you decided how you are going to count down the days until Christmas? Try making a Giving Box; after all, the gift of giving is the GREATEST gift of all<3
advent calendar

P.S.  I really should have let my daughter help decorate the Giving Box...don't be a crafty control freak like me and let your kid have some fun with it!

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