November 30, 2010

The Second Day of CHRISTmas – the good deed advent

As I mentioned before, there will be a couple of guest bloggers this week.  We brainstormed about our ideas so we didn’t repeat any.  I had an advent I wanted to make and then Christie (from a Lemon Squeezy Home) mentioned the idea of a service advent and I thought that was a great idea.  So, taking her idea and taking an idea from a bucket advent I saw a couple of years ago from Land of Nod (which I would link you to, but they don't sell it anymore)….here’s the good deed advent.


Instead of just getting candy each day, there is a slip of paper in each bucket listing a service to be performed.  (The candy comes after doing the good deed.)

Christmas is more than a celebration of the birth of Christ, but a celebration of His life.  I believe our adoration of Him is best shown by our emulation of Him.


I’ll share our list with you in case you want to make one.  That way you won’t have to come up with 25 things on your own.

I made the list with Rex in mind.  I wanted them to be things he could do as a three year old (with a little help at times).  Here we go.

Write a letter to a loved one.

Gather some toys to give away.
Find the home with the best Christmas lights and take them a thank you note with a treat.
Visit someone elderly.
Make an ornament for grandma.
Deliver gifts to the neighbors.
Take some groceries to the food bank.
Go caroling.
Anonymously give flowers to someone.
Say hello and smile at everyone you meet today.
Take in someone’s garbage cans.
Leave change in a vending machine for the next person who comes along.
Call an aunt and tell her you love her.
Take Doggy treats to someone who has a dog.
Make a gift and card for your teacher.
Draw a picture of the Nativity and explain it to your little brother.
Do something kind for the garbage man.
Give five compliments to strangers.
Put money in the Salvation army cup.
Buy and deliver Christmas gifts for a family in need.
Invite a widow over to dinner.
Leave kind notes for Daddy all over the house.
Open the door for someone.
Clear the table after dinner.
Give your gift to Jesus. (There will be an explanation for this one in a different post.)

I tried to schedule them when I put them in the buckets.  For example, I had to put the one that says bring in someone's garbage cans on the day we have garbage pick up.  You can also adjust the ideas to fit your family.

Now, let me explain the crafting part.  I bought the the buckets HERE.  They were sold by the dozen, so I bought 24 total and decided to hang something in the middle for the final day.  If you don't mind the buckets being white I heard they have them in 3-packs in the wedding section of the dollar store.  I cut vinyl numbers for each bucket, but you can easily find numbers in the scrapbook section. 

I bought a giant spool of wired ribbon.  I like the wired stuff because it's easy to make bows with.  I started making the advent by tying knots around each bucket handle, but it was really hard to pull all that ribbon through each time and make sure the numbers were all facing the same way.  I recommend sewing the ribbon as I'll show you here.

I cut 25 strips about 10 inches long.  I looped them through the bucket handle and sewed them onto the long ribbon (being sure to make them all the same distance apart) like in the picture below.  To make life easier, you could also wait until they are all sewn before sticking on the numbers.  That way you don't have to keep making sure they are all facing the same way as you sew.

Lastly, since my ribbon wasn't double sided and because I wanted to hide the sewn loops, I set another ribbon on top and sewed down the middle the entire length of the ribbon.  (I wanted to make it look nice on both sides since I planned to hang it in the doorway.)  I put a bow in the middle and strung up a berry-covered ball in the middle, but you could really put anything in the middle.

It takes a really wide doorway to hang it up in, but you could also string it across a wall.

I am so excited to make this a tradition for our little family and I can't wait to start doing these deeds with Rex.  We'll tell you how it goes :)

Thank you for reading my blog!  See you tomorrow.


Unknown said...

this is terrific!!! thanks for the tutorial!!

Katielin317 said...

were those wooden beams original to your house or did you add them?? I love the look!! ANd the buckets are such a great idea. I think I'll do that today. I need a quick last minute advent idea:) Thanks!

Beth said...

Fabulous, good job on Making Christmas really about our Savior.

Jennifer Taylor said...

I have an advent garland for my kids and wanted to include not just small treasures for them but a way for them to give back and I love your list - just in time too as I will stuff the bags/stockings tonight!

stephaniegiese said...

I LOVE the service idea!!! That's extra fantastic!

Jax @ AlyandAsh said...

What a great idea! I love your focus this season and can't wait to try this idea when Asher is a bit older!

simplymamma said...


Tonya said...

Again, another SUPER AWESOME idea. I love this! Keep 'em coming.

AdinB said...

Love your place! I love the idea of the list of doing good things put in the bucket and then get a reward of candy later on. That is just the best! :)

Adin B

Jo said...

That is really sweet! I love both the bucket garland and the idea of doing something good. I got tears in my eyes when I read #21. My mom is a widow and she has always tried to bless other widows. She would have "widow parties" (tea parties for the widows in the church), and we always made valentines for all the widows in the church.

For advent (since we were home sick from church this week), Juli and I made an advent chain for her little Christmas tree. And my mother-in-law always sends the kids some chocolate advent calendars.

Christie // lemon squeezy home said...

It looks so great! You did awesome. I tried to email you--I haven't forgotten--our computer just has been out of commission for a week so I will get my post to you tonight hopefully!

P.S. Your buckets and the way you put them together are a much better way than I would have thought of ;).

Laura at Ms. Smartie Pants said...

This is so cool, my favorite part is what you are teaching your kids!!!! Way to go momma!

Blissful & Domestic said...

What a neat idea. I love that you are posting these a few days before December. It helps so now I have a day or so to get some fun things in order for my littles. Thank you for the wonderful CHRISTmas ideas:>

Unknown said...

Oh Cheri, I LOVE this - what a great idea! We always did an advent growing up with small little plush Christmas figures that we would place on our advent tree. But I'm loving this idea!! It's very easy to get caught up in the physical gifts of Christmas, but this definitely makes everyone slow down and think about the simple, more important things.

What a blessing you are to your boys - they are going grow up to be awesome men!!

Talk to you soon,

srldesign said...

what an awesome advent! I love the little ones are too little to understand, but I think this would be great in a few years. wonderful idea =)

Taylor Swim said...

I love this idea! I have an empty advent this year and I can get to it with your ideas. Thanks!

Beth Tunnell said...

What a sweet idea! I'm going to have to make this today, so we can get started tomorrow. Thank you!

SCC said...

I love this idea! Not only does it look fabulous, but the Spirit of what's behind it is even better. Thanks so much for sharing your amazing gifts with us!

Alisa Burke said...

This is SUCH a lovely idea!!

Kristin said...

I love all of the "fun" activities at Christmas, but have been trying to think of how to make sure the true meaning of Christmas is emphasized to my children. I love this idea, I'm going to print and slip your activities into my advent right now! Thanks for sharing! said...

I love your list of ideas. I borrowed a few to put in our Advent Jars.

Tori said...

We did something similar, but we made count down chains and the kids came up with their own ideas. I think it helps them keep perspective.

Heather said...

What a great idea Cheri! I haven't done Advent with kids yet, but I think Sam is old enough to get it now. So I have a project to do this week now. I really appreciate you focusing on Christ and the reason for Christmas.

Homemade Heather said...

Aw! Thank you so much for sharing this and all of your good deeds ~ my boys turned three at the end of October ~ I might try to attempt some of these with them! Great work Momma!

CJ said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Delia said...

I love this idea. We have fun activities in ours but a service we can perform as well would be wonderful! Your buckets are adorable!

I {heart} Nap Time said...

This is perfect! I love that this week is dedicated to Christ. Sometime we get caught up in everything else, and it's important to remember what Christmas is all about. I want to make one of these, it will be a fun tradition. Thanks for the great idea!

katy said...

what an amazing idea, and wonderful way of teaching your boys what the holiday is really about! Thanks for sharing, I can't wait to do this with a family some day.

Sarah Takens said...

Thank you for keeping the true meaning of Christmas in the light. Praise God for the amazing gift he gave to us on Christmas!

Unknown said...

This is fantastic! i absolutely love this project. thank you so much for sharing this idea!!!

Cyndie said...

I have been looking EVERYWHERE for something like this. THANK YOU!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

kristen said...

I Love this idea. I don't have a wide door way, but you could also put them going down the stair well (if you don't have kids who will knock them over everyday. You could put the deed for the day in the bucket before kids get up, that way you don't have all of the deeds all over the floor everyday, as would happen in my house). Thanks so much for the idea!!! We are doing scripture chains for the kids in primary and I will include some of these on them. Thanks!!!

Unknown said...

I bought these from Garnet Hill (not for the SUPER SALE price they are now, of course). They're super cute and now I know just what to put in them. YAY YOU!!!

Rachel Kaylynn said...

Love this idea! We already have an advent set up for this year, but I'm pinning this for next year.

Good Grief Guru said...

Hi. I'm a 32 year old widow who would LOVE to come for dinner. I have a 3 year old too :) Great idea. I've got to say I especially had a good laugh over that. So awesome you are doing this with your kids. These are the things that not only go a long way with them, but I, as a widow, must say they go a long way with me too. :)

Good Grief Guru said...

By the way, you can check me out at Maybe you'll see a post about this great idea :)

Jess said...

Thanks for sharing these ideas - we are very excited to do kind things for others this Christmas season!


Related Posts with Thumbnails