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Julie in AZ
12-19-2010, 02:36 PM
Well, our tradition of toy-based Advent calendars has come to an end. For several years, we bought our dc Playmobil calendars and they would play together the whole month long.

This year, we bought my ds a Lego Advent Calendar and created a Playmobil one for my dd. Both dc were whiny wanting to open the doors/bags early and sometimes about not getting "enough". Oh, that is so the end of that tradition! :lol:

We let the kids open the calendars early. Then, this morning, I gently mentioned that we won't be doing them anymore as they seem to take the focus off Jesus. Both of my kids were fine with it.

So, less stress for me next Advent. ;) I really like our faith-based traditions better anyway.

Kendra AU
12-19-2010, 07:00 PM
Julie!! You should read them The Christmas Mystery!! It's about a little boy and his Dad looking for the PERFECT advent calendar. They settle on one called a "magic advent calendar".. Well, there's more then they bargained for inside and while the little boy wants to open them early he says it would be like cheating. :lol: Anyway you read a small story each day which tells you about what happens when he opens each of the little doors. We're loving it. :D

Kendra AU
12-20-2010, 05:11 AM
So, needless to say we really love this book and I must put it on my list for purchasing next year perhaps. This book would make such an AWESOME Christmas study book.

The book starts as I described before but the 'magic' comes from the stories inside each door which traces a little girl Elisabet as she makes her way to Bethlehem to greet the Christ child. She is accompanied by many of the "characters" from the Nativity "story".

It traces their path through some major countries/cities and talks of various Biblical men's journeys like Paul's missionary journeys, his conversion to Christ, etc.

In the book the parents and their son are so wrapped up in the daily story that they even get out atlases to look up all the mentioned places. I can so see my kids doing that. ;) Anyway, excellent book and after today's reading I just had to share more. :D

Robin in Colorado
12-20-2010, 07:14 AM
Kendra, this sounds like a wonderful book; I'm looking into it.

Julie, we've thought about a Jesse tree for several years but never was inspired by one - until seeing Kendra's on her blog. Big Girl and I will be making one for next year!

MicheleNJ
12-20-2010, 08:22 AM
Julie,
We do several advent calendar/countdown type things here including my own version of a lego advent calendar (http://koreamom.blogspot.com/2010/12/holiday-bliss-2010december-4.html), but I think the boys favorite (and they are lego manics here) is our felt nativity calendar (http://koreamom.blogspot.com/2010/12/holiday-blissdecember-1st.html). I put a Bible verse in each day relating to Jesus birth.

Kendra that book is now on my wish list for next year! Thanks!

Julie in AZ
12-20-2010, 09:09 AM
Julie!! You should read them The Christmas Mystery!!

Thanks, Kendra. I have it on my amazon wish list for next year.


Julie, we've thought about a Jesse tree for several years but never was inspired by one - until seeing Kendra's on her blog. Big Girl and I will be making one for next year!

I like the Jesse tree too. It helps to keep the focus where it should be.


Julie,
I think the boys favorite (and they are lego manics here) is our felt nativity calendar (http://koreamom.blogspot.com/2010/12/holiday-blissdecember-1st.html). I put a Bible verse in each day relating to Jesus birth.

This is great Michele, thanks.

Rebe
12-20-2010, 10:29 AM
Thanks for sharing your experience, Julie.

I've looked at those Lego Advent calendars for years and even felt slightly guilty about not getting them (for my Lego-loving kids). We do lots of daily Advent things here, but none are present-based. You've kind of confirmed my suspicions about how that could go wrong.

Lori D
12-21-2010, 01:43 AM
Kendra- the book sounds wonderful!

We did do the Lego calendar for the first time this year, and I have to say that we love it! We have just one for the three boys to share and they are all so excited about it. I think it is nice that each boy opens a door every third day-on the day when it is not their turn, the boys are always anxiously looking over that day's lucky "door opener" to see which piece it will be. It adds absolutely no meaning to the season that I can think of, but boy have they had fun!

I will say though that I know each year can be different. On another year, it might cause contention. Each year has it's own dynamic.

*Another thought that I had is that it would fun to give the calendar for Christmas. In our church, the "season" actually lasts to the 2nd of February (The Presentation of the Lord). This would keep the festivities going.

TrishaG
12-22-2010, 12:31 AM
You've confirmed my wonderings, Julie. Like Rebe, I've felt a little guilty in the past for not getting a lego advent calendar for my lego loving crew. A few years ago, however, we found a cute felt advent calendar with Mary, Joseph and baby Jesus as opposed to the more common Santa themed ones.

Each morning, the children greet me with a kiss...and in return are given a "kiss' (of the chocolate variety :yum: ). It's been a sweet tradition we've enjoyed and will continue to do so in addition to our other Advent activities.

Hollie in SC
12-22-2010, 07:27 AM
I will say though that I know each year can be different. On another year, it might cause contention. Each year has it's own dynamic.

:yes: It has been :thumb: at our house the past few years as my children seem to bend over backward to honor/bless the other one w/the calendars. We don't always see this day-to-day so I love it. :lol:

Julie, we also have an advent box and this year I've added activities in for them--read a Christmas book by the fire, a child pick a movie to watch, PJ Run, go out and watch lights in our PJs, etc. They've loved it as well.

Kendra AU
12-22-2010, 02:56 PM
Julie, thought of you last night while reading our Advent book.. the little boy said it would be all most sad when Christmas came because he wouldn't get to open his calendar anymore. ;)

HollyD
12-22-2010, 03:51 PM
This is our 2nd year with the Lego Advent calendar and we love it! I have 4 children who are sharing this unbelievably well. We also do Jesse Tree and are reading Tabitha's Travels plus a number of other activities with our church. For us the Lego Advent calendar has not shifted our focus off of the birth of Jesus. However if it reached that point, I agree with Julie that we would do away with it.