One of our Advent activities this week was to make sugar cookies. I've only had my KitchenAid a few weeks but I'm trying my hardest to make up for lost time. That said, I've had more than one baking disaster since it's arrived. I'm not sure you could call it a state of excitement or a frenzy due to trying to fit so many things in a short amount of time but I used evaporated milk instead of sweetened condensed to make a Thanksgiving pumpkin pie and completely left any kind of canned milk out of mini pumpkin pies for Ruby's party. When we finished kneading our cookie dough I knew something had gone awry this time as well.
Depite leaving out the butter, we had fun making a mess and still taste-testing the raw dough. I'm SO that mom that sets a bad example by sampling it raw. Bad habits die hard. We'll give it another try soon but I did manage to whip together some from a package. Not as good but the kids were able to frost them and we sent them off to neighbors during another Advent activity. That's for another post, though!
Just like the last two years we've been doing an Advent activity calendar full of little experiences we can create to focus on spending time together, sharing our goodies, and enjoying this festive season. It's a challenge to always stick to the calendar and there's a little more preparation involved so that we always have the supplies and time we need to accomplish our activity each day. I always give myself permission to switch things around or possibly skip one if it's just not working out or something else comes up. Overall we're just trying to be more intentional on focusing on experiences and time together during a busy and sometimes gift-focused time of year.
We're already a week in to Advent but if you're interested in making a similar calendar I wrote a tutorial awhile back.
Here's the list of activities from last year:
Bake Christmas cookies, watch a movie at Grandma Cheryl's house, make brownies, pick out a board game to play, an extra 20 minutes of screen time, hang paper chains, visit the North Pole at Bass Pro and see Santa Claus, paint ornaments, make pizza at home, build a gingerbread house, build a fort on mama's bed & read books all evening, make a ton of paper snowflakes, buy new snow boots just in case, drive around looking at Christmas lights, read two or three Christmas stories, make hot chocolate and marshmallows, make a present for someone, donate to a local charity, mail out post cards to people we love, surprise friends with sweet treats, watch Home Alone I, watch Home Alone II, get Daddy at the airport, pancakes for breakfast!
This year we're also including: ice skating at the park, taking Sebastian to the Nutcracker, making snow globes, doorbell ditching sweet treats, making wreaths from pine tree boughs, cutting down a tree in the woods, and caroling with the boy scouts at the childrens' hospital.
There are so many ways to personalize your list according to where you live, what your kids can enjoy, and what your budget allows. I'm hoping it will provide our kids with some great family memories for years to come. Does your family do an Advent calendar?