We have now started the official countdown to Christmas! When our children were young Ninon made an advent calendar featuring a special daily activity while counting down the days 'til Christmas. This kept the kids busy and having great fun getting ready for the big event. Whether it was making snowflakes or watching "Rudolf the Red Nosed Reindeer" together – every day was a special surprise and each child would vie to be the one to discover that day’s activity. This created many wonderful memories and became one of our family’s Christmas traditions.
My daughter Alma has created this wonderful advent calendar that you can use for your family. It is absolutely free and here is what you do to get it.
This is my daughter Alma – isn’t she beautiful?
1. A frame. The current measurements of the calendar fit perfectly into Ikea RIBBA frame that is 15 3/4 x 19 3/4 (matted to 11 1/2 x 15 1/2). (The image can be sized down and cropped to 8.5 x 11 dimensions without losing any of the design.)
2. A professional printer, if you're going to print out the large version (it will need to be printed on 12x18 paper). Or your home color printer if you're going to crop and resize.
3. An xacto knife to cut around the ornaments.
4. 25 event ideas leading up to Christmas!
Download the two images. (Click on the images to go to the full size versions. Then right-click and choose "Save Image As..." and save to your computer. Make sure you have both the colored bobbles and the black and white background.)
Crop and resize images to fit the frame that you are interested in. (Most basic photo editing programs that come with your computer will allow you to do this.)
Print the two images. I strongly recommend cardstock. Remember if you're printing the full-size version to request that it be printed on 12x18 paper. (The background image doesn't have to be printed in color---you won't see any of it. It's just there to be a guide of where to write in your events.)
Write the Christmas events on the background image in the numbered bobble silhouettes. Have fun with this!
With the xacto blade, cut around each bobble on the color copy. Leave the top of the bobble attached.
Match up the front and back precisely. Tape them to the picture matte, if using.
Remove the glass from your frame. Insert the artwork and enjoy! Each day, lift up the appropriate bobble to discover the day's activity underneath.
(Keep up with what Mike and Alma Loveland are up to at Loveland Miscellany!)