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Monday, November 19, 2018

24 Low-Stress Family Advent Activities

The Christmas season as a parent of young children is a two-sided coin. On the one hand it is the most magical way to experience the holiday, but on the other hand it can get overwhelming trying to fit in all the things you want to do with your kids! My solution for the last several years has been a low-key list of small things to do each day in December to save me the worry of figuring out how to fit everything in while keeping the holiday cheer going strong in the most low-maintenance way possible!

4 years ago I made an advent calendar out of a mini muffin tin and filled each day with a small Christmas-related activity to do each day in December, and I have never looked back! Each year I've made a list of tiny holiday tasks for each day leading up to Christmas, modifying my list each year as my daughters get older. Here's my list for this year now that my girls are almost 7 years old:

1. Put up the Christmas tree
2. Put out the nativity scenes
3. Put (electric) candles in the windows
4. Put up Christmas lights around the house and on the tree
5. Hang ornaments on the Christmas tree
6. Decorate the front door
7. Bake Christmas cookies
8. Donate old toys and clothes
9. Make an advent wreath
10. Make Christmas cards
11. Deliver Christmas cards (in the mail and in person)
12. Shop for/ make presents
13. Wrap presents
14. Take family pictures
15. Call family and friends to wish them a Merry Christmas
16. "Jingle" a neighbor
17. Make a gingerbread house
18. Go on a train ride with Santa
19. Hang the stockings
20. Watch a Christmas movie in our pajamas
21. Read Christmas books
22. Put out cookies and carrots for Santa and the reindeer
23. Make peppermint hot chocolate with all the fixings
24. Drive through the local light display to see the Christmas lights

Here's last year's list for 6 year olds, my list for 5 year olds, my list for 4 year olds, and the one for 3 year olds, if you're interested in more ideas for the littles. I love putting the calendar together each year because it relieves the pressure I would otherwise feel to make sure I'm taking the time to enjoy the holiday with my girls, and doing small things each day makes the whole month more fun without anything getting overwhelming! 

What holiday traditions do you have with your family? I'd love to hear your favorites in the comments below. 

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