diy advent calendar.

happy day after thanksgiving! the official start (in my house at least) of the christmas season. and what's a better way to recover from that breakfast pumpkin pie than an afternoon of crafting on the couch. and so, to encourage just that, here's a snazzy advent calendar diy, complete with printables, for all of your couch crafting fun.

i love christmastime. i love having a living tree in the house (and fending off cats and toddlers). i love sipping hot chocolate with peppermint. i love roaring fires and cheesy music and endless cookies and cakes shaped like logs. as much as i love christmastime though, i'm not such a huge fan of christmas. i think it overwhelms me. with all the stress of giving presents and getting presents, all of the goodnesses of the season gets briefly lost in the frenzied day. last year, though, i think i struck on a happy balance. a way to embrace all of the awesomeness that is christmastime and minimize the stress of presenting while still having fun things to open.

advent. a full month of intentional christmastiming. last year i sent my sister lilly a random assortment of advent gifts (only a few of which got blogged) and had a total blast collecting them all, wrapping them up, and shipping them out. so this year, my sisters and sisters-in-laws decided (i.e. agreed to go along with my crazy plan) to do an advent calendar swap--each person would make their own advent calendar, and then we'd exchanged them randomly. this is my contribution to the mix.

i was totally inspired by this one that i saw on pour mes jolis mômes. i loved its modern look with the black and white, its use of washi tape (seriously, can there be too much?) and most importantly, its ability to hold candy (and maybe also the way they look like those ice pops from the elementary school cafeteria...). i've been making some simple hand drawn patterns for a while now, and i figured this was the perfect opportunity to finally make vector graphics from them. so i took the same premise and made twenty four of my own black and white designs. and i'm completely in love.

and a little sad that it's already left my house. but stoked that it's being hung up in an awesome house in south carolina. and since i made printables, i can make them over and over again. and so can you! just click here.

in addition to the twenty four pouches, i also made small cards with scriptures on them and cards with suggested festive activities, one each for each of the twenty four days. rather than reinvent the wheel, you can find awesome assembly instructions over at pour mes jolis mômes.

i chose to make mine into a garland, so i wasn't able to hang them by the string in the corner (they don't all face outwards that way...which i found out the hard way...). tiny clothespins worked perfectly, though, even with the weight of a couple of pieces of candy.

so you should make some! and keep them for yourself or give them to a friend or to a neighbor or to someone completely random. and then hang them up over the fireplace, with a yak. or throw them in a basket. or hide them all over the house, easter egg style.

and since the pouches aren't too christmas specific, they can be used for other occasions--like twenty four days of birthdaying or twenty four days of summer or twenty four days of just because! 

on a somewhat related note, if you do choose to fill them with chocolate, hanging them above an often used fireplace is probably not ideal. just saying.

happy christmastime!

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