We’re trying to be more intentional about the advent season by implementing these Advent ideas for kids. Here’s our meaningful Advent tradition we do with our family. Affiliate links are included for your convenience.
I am so exited for this post, and so excited for this season! I am making it a big focus in our family and we are being really intentional about how we teach our kids on how to approach Christmas and Advent. Our older kids (our kids are 6, 4, and 1) are able to grasp so much more about the WHY of this season now, and I want to be really careful with how we teach them and model how we navigate through this season as parents.
So let’s start at the beginning:
What is advent?
Advent is the building of anticipation of Christmas – and Jesus’ birth!
But it’s also more than that. It’s reflecting on WHY Jesus came to earth for us, and how we are in desperate need of a Savior. Advent is a time to reflect on God’s promises, and how we can trust that when He promises something, He will see it through.
Advent is a time of joyful anticipation. We’re anticipating Christmas Day and the promise that comes with it, but we’re also anticipating Christ’s second return.
The four weeks of Advent are broken down into these four parts:
- Hope (or promise)
- Preparation (waiting or prophecy)
- Joy (peace)
- Love (adoration)
It’s a time to take our eyes off of the commercialism of the season, and reflect on WHY this season is so important.
I thought this little video explained it well & simply:
Family ideas for Advent:
In the past, when our kids were littler, we just did the little chocolate Advent calendars. There’s nothing wrong with that of course, and we’ll still be doing it alongside of our other ideas!
We’ll be doing a chocolate calendar alongside the other ‘calendar’. I would really love for ours to be a beautiful wooden display like this one, but we don’t have time for it this year!
I just bought these little bags on Amazon and we’ll make a cute display for them next year. For right now, we’ll just put some twine on our mantel, and we’ll tie them to the twine to display.
I bought a simple Advent candle holder on clearance at the end of the season last year (here’s a cute one that’s not expensive if you need one)
How to celebrate Advent as a family:
We’ll be reading simple Advent devotions that’s on the kids level (my husband is in charge of that one). These can help us prepare our hearts for the proper mindset we want to have during the Advent season.
But in an effort to take our focus off of all of the STUFF this season, we’re working to do activities together instead of consuming more and more from retail store. We’re hoping that if we’re intentional about this now in the little years, it will be a natural rhythm we get into as a family as the kids get older.
Here’s our calendar for this year:
I made a page that you can print out if you want to use our schedule too! Print it for free here.
I’ll be writing these down on little slips of paper, and then putting them in these little bags that the kids can open together every day.
I got a lot of these ideas from Ralphie at Simply On Purpose. She does something similar to this and calls it “The gift of Togetherness” which I think is really sweet!
If you need some other ideas for meaningful family traditions, you can click here to read this post that SO many people have loved!
What this calendar should not be:
I talk about this next – but don’t put pressure on yourself to add this to your list if you don’t feel like this is something that you will love doing with your family and it will bring you closer to each other and grow in your faith.
We’re doing this in place of adding more “stuff” to our family and to take the focus off of consumerism. But again, if this is just adding one more thing to your list of stuff to do, and if it seems like a burden, don’t do it!
What Advent is NOT:
Advent is not something that should be stressful. It is a season to be enjoyed, to wait with joyful anticipation, and to make intentional choices to point our eyes to Jesus.
Advent is not about commercialism, running around and filling our calendars with more more MORE.
It’s a season to enjoy the simple pleasures in our lives and to remember the true reason for this season.
I bought the majority of my gifts in November, decorated a lot of our house already, and I’m going to be working on slowing down in December. Of course it will still be busy. Sometimes it’s very hard for us to avoid this. But as moms, we have more control over this spirit of “busy busy busy more more more” than we realize. If we can work on modeling the joyful anticipation of the season and take delight in the simple things, then our children will do the same!
I hope you’re able to enjoy this beautiful season with your family, and take everyone’s focus off of the STUFF and onto the real true reason for Christmas while implementing these Advent ideas for kids!