Advent means “coming,” and in December we celebrate advent as the coming of Jesus with his birth on Christmas Day. During the season, we have several countdown traditions, including gifts or treats every day from an advent calendar, holiday activities to do as a family and scripture readings to focus on the meaning of Christmas.
It’s easy to get swept up in all the holiday spirit and in our house, we definitely do! Here are a few traditions we wanted to share with you.
On December 1st, our Elf arrives — we have a dedicated Elf on the Shelf Post to document his shenanigans and share ideas — also on December 1st, each of our kids receives their own fun advent calendars like these:
For our older girls, we’ve given them a Charm Bracelet Advent Calendar and also Created Our Own Advent Calendar filled with Mini Nail Polish Bottles in each box — you can buy a similar version here: Nail Polish Advent Calendar. This year we filled the boxers with Scrunchies!
Leading up to Christmas, we recognize the four virtues represented by four candles lit on a wreath: hope, love, joy and peace. Each Sunday during Advent Season, we light a candle and read a scripture (free downloads below!). It’s a great way to quiet down a weekend and bring the focus back to the meaning of Christmas.
Traditionally, Five Candles: 3 Purple, 1 Pink and 1 White are used — the purple represents penance and pink is for rejoicing on the third Sunday of Advent. On Christmas Day, you light a white candle in the middle.
There are many resources for scripture readings including this one from Catholic.org — However with younger kids, I found Andrew Gabriel’s resources useful and have the weekly readings available below:
We also plan fun holiday-themed activities throughout the month — Below is a free printable checklist.
We’d love to hear about your traditions!