There are many, many ways that people around the world prepare for Christmas. We, of course, talk about this a lot on this blog as it relates to stockings, ornaments and other Christmas decorations. A very meaningful practice that is really universal is the preparation time called Advent. Advent begins on the the 4th Sunday before Christmas, and is a time of expectant waiting for the celebration of the birth of Jesus and Christmas Day.
There are often readings that accompany Advent, and many Christian churches light a candle and participate. We are encouraged to couple these things with practices of our own at home, and the Advent Calendar has been one of the practical ways many have adopted.
I think this lovely, handmade Advent Calendar is really wonderful. The little bags that hang are filled with treats, and are a great way to involve children in the anticipation of something more than just the gifts they'll be receiving.
There are whole books that have been written on the history of Advent and its practice today, and you can find those with a simple google search. Couple the daily treat with a short reading, and this will instill in both your children's and your own heart the true meaning of Christmas!
And, of course, the simplicity of this Advent Calendar cannot be beat! Using tension rods that fit the window you'll hang this in, small muslin bags, and some green felt, you can craft your own Advent Calendar. Find full instructions for this project here.
Do you practice Advent in your home? It's a great way to remember the reason for the season.
Photo credit: betterhomesandgardens.com