There is no doubt that Christmas is a lot more fun when there are kids around but this does not mean that households without kids should miss out on any of the fun. No siree! In our household we have two adults and a dog. And it is Christmas everyday for the dog. A couple of years ago we were hosting the extended family Christmas Day get together and there was lots to do and plan and a measure of excitement and anticipation. To countdown we made a list of things that needed to be done, things we wanted to get done, and things that would be fun to do so that we could enjoy counting down the days and not have a “last minute rush” to get it all done.
The list was cut up into single activities. Folded and placed in a jar. Each morning at breakfast we took out a piece of paper and made plans to achieve the task. Most activities were done at night time – things like ’30 minutes of cleaning while listening to Christmas music’ or ‘write 5 Christmas cards’ or ‘put up some decorations’ but there were also some things that needed to be done during the day when we were out – things like ‘perform a random act of kindness for a stranger today’. Other things we would agree on a plan to achieve – things like ‘watch a feel good movie’. The Advent Jar has become a Christmas tradition for us.
This year I am home by myself for the first week. Then we will be away for the third and fourth week but home for Christmas Eve. So the first weeks pieces of paper have been sealed with white background washi tape and contain activities that I myself want to do before Christmas. Like ‘make some lemon scented sugar hand scrub’ and ‘sew some Christmas pillowcases’ (to sleep on – not fill with presents!) The second and third weeks activities are sealed with red tape. These activities will be suitable for which ever place we are in. One of the activities during this time is to make some pom poms to decorate trees outside. I will just need to remember to take some yarn when we go away. I know we will find some trees to hang our pom poms on wherever we are.
The activities for the last week are written on gold paper, so we know to leave these until last. Not much point getting a ticket with ‘write five Christmas cards’ just the day before Christmas. Hopefully cards would all be done by then. So the gold pieces of paper have things for close to Christmas. Like ‘wrap some presents’, ‘go out to see the Christmas lights in the neighbourhood’.
The activity I am most looking forward to getting is ‘go out into the garden and pick some flowers/leaves to make a little arrangement, arrange in a vase and place somewhere in the house where it will be enjoyed’ . We will both do this separately. There are some activities that we will do together – like ‘plan what little gift to buy or make to give to our neighbours’, there are others that each of us will do on our own, like ‘find five things to donate to the op shop’. Then there are some that we might do together or we might do on our own – like ‘make a donation to charity’ or ‘go somewhere you’ve never been before’, perhaps depending on the day that activity gets drawn out of the jar. And there are some things that are not really an activity but a breakfast table conversation – such as ‘share your hopes for the Christmas/New Year period’.
Counting down to Christmas is not just for kids – not in this house!