Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Family Advent Calendar

I wanted to do a family advent calendar this year with Bible verses and also family activities we could do each day in December leading up to Christmas.

Because I am a last minute person, the advent calendar was created last Friday, November 30th, but so far we are loving it!  I got little red envelopes from Michaels and added some little glitter sticker numbers to count from 1 to 24.  Then I printed out slips of paper to fill the envelopes.

The kids beg me each morning to do it and we get the envelope down and read off the scripture and then the activity.  I like that it's making this season of Jesus's birth more meaningful and helping ensure we actually do the activities we'd like to get in.

The activities are a mix of things for others and things that are just fun for us.

And I listed them basically in order by how I thought they'd best fit in our calendar (some take much more time than others, some are only offered on specific days), but the beauty of the envelopes is that I can switch around the slips of paper that are inside if I change my mind!

Each envelope has one slip of paper with the activity and one slip with the Bible verse that tells something about Jesus.

Our Activities:

1. Decorate a gingerbread house
2. Christmas Lunch with adoption support group
3. Volunteer for Jingle Bell Express (charity event that gives out toys and food)
4. Talk about ways we can let our lights shine for Jesus
5. Sing in/Watch Choir Christmas Concert
6. Make a birthday card for Jesus and put it under the tree
7. Fill a Shoebox for a needy child (http://www.samaritanspurse.org/giving/buildabox/)
8. Make wrapping paper
9. Write letters to our Compassion children
10. Build a fort from blankets and read a Christmas book inside
11. Give $5 to each person we drive past begging on the streets
12. Perform a random act of kindness
13. Make a Christmas craft
14. Watch a Christmas Movie
15. Make peppermint bark
16. Drive around to look at lights
17. Go see “Really, Really Big Christmas Show”
18. Have hot chocolate with all the fixings
19. Act out the Christmas Story
20. Make peppermint playdough
21. Buy gifts for others (WorldVision.org)
22. Make cards and deliver to nursing home
23. Decorate Christmas Cookies
24. Make a birthday cake for Jesus and read the Christmas story from Bible

And the verses:

1. The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly. John 10:10 
2. The Spirit of the Lord GOD is upon me, because the LORD has anointed me to bring good news to the poor; he has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to those who are bound; Isaiah 61:1 
3. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him. John 3:17 
 4. For I have come down from heaven, not to do my own will but the will of him who sent me. John 6:38 
5. For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. John 3:16 
6. This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him. 1 John 4:9 
7. I am the light of the world; he who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have everlasting life. John 8:12 
8. For in Christ all the fullness of the Deity lives in bodily form Col 2:9 
 9. For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. Rom 6:23 
10. And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth. John 1:14 
11. Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” John 14:6 
12. In love he predestined us for adoption as sons through Jesus Christ, according to the purpose of his will, Eph 1:5 
13. Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and they shall call his name Immanuel” (which means, God with us). Matt 1:23 
14. And behold, a voice from heaven said, “This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased.” 15. Behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age. Matt 28:20b 
16. How great is the love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are! The reason the world does not know us is that it did not know him. 1 John 3:1 
17. I know that my Redeemer lives and that in the end He will stand upon the earth. Job 19:25 
18. For whoever wishes to save his life will lose it; but whoever loses his life for My sake will find it. Matt 16:25 
19. I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing. John 15:5 
20. Therefore be imitators of God, as beloved children. And walk in love, as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us, a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God. Eph 5:1-2 
21. By this we know love, that he laid down his life for us, and we ought to lay down our lives for the brothers. But if anyone has the world’s goods and sees his brother in need, yet closes his heart against him, how does God’s love abide in him? 1 John 3:16-17 
22. He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation. For by him all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things were created through him and for him. And he is before all things, and in him all things hold together. Col 1:15-17 
23. But our citizenship is in heaven, and from it we await a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ, Phil 3:20 24. I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world. John 16:33 

Find more Works for Me Wednesday here.


  1. I love this idea!! Thanks for sharing :)

  2. Thanks for the Bible verses. I too did my calendar November 30th and haven't even put up all the days...hehe. Here's what I posted on FB about my Advent calendar almost mishap:
    "So Bob came home for lunch and told Lil we would be watching a family Christmas movie tonight! Woo hoo! However, on our Advent calendar I had put we would read a Christmas story today. Luckily we hadn't opened today's surprise. I figured I could change out the slip of paper, saving the book for Thursday. But, I forgot about it until I saw her coming down the stairs after her nap! I was trying to come up with a back up plan...and quick....when I remembered something super important....she's three and can't read! Read a book turned into family movie just like that!"

    1. I love it, Ellen! That's thinking on your feet! I am stuffing ours every morning because it makes me too stressed to really commit to an activity until the day of. And I have to confess we didn't get yesterday's done, so I'm moving it to over the weekend and we'll just do two on Saturday. Flexible is the name of the game when you're dealing with kids, don't you think?


I'd love to hear what you think!