Looking for Advent ideas? We have a big list of Advent Calendar Activities to help inspire you this year! My family is doing a special 25 Days of Christmas ideas for the month of December, where will do some sort of special activity or event for each day of the month leading to Christmas to celebrate the season of Advent.
You can read all about the 25 Days of Christmas and see a variety of different Advent calendars that you can make yourself! Or just keep it really simple & have your kids help you make a red & green paper chain & you can write the activities on each of the links for the chain. Then have one child pull off a link each day with that day’s activity.
I’ve compiled all sorts of fun ideas of activities that you could do for your 25 Days of Christmas Activities or 12 Days of Christmas Activities. You can do however many days you want to do – 12 days, 5 days, or even just every few days!
Northwest Christmas Activities List:
If you’re in the Northwest, make sure to check out our big list of Pacific Northwest Christmas Events to find some local activities you could add to the list, too.
Read a Christmas Book A Night:
Another idea for fun Christmas Countdown Activities is to read a Christmas book a day during the month of December as you count down to Christmas. This 25 Days of Christmas Books can be books you have on hand or books you get at the library, wrapped up or put in a basket to choose from each night. We have a list of 40 of our favorite Christmas books for kids, too!
Ideas for Advent Activities for Families:
- Chocolate Advent Calendar – Give each of your kids a chocolate Advent Calendar to use with your homemade advent calendar (you can find these at the Dollar store, Walgreens, Fred Meyer, World Market, Walgreens, Hallmark, Bed Bath & Beyond) *This is a great activity to do on December 1st
- Visit a Living Nativity (check out our PNW Christmas Events list to see a few here in the Puget Sound area ) – great way to kick off the season of Advent & focusing on the true reason for the season!
- Picnic next to the Christmas tree
- Birthday party for Jesus – have a little birthday party for Jesus & invite your friends or just do it with your family. Make a birthday cake for Jesus
- Red & Green Dinner – serve food & drinks that are either red or green for dinner (if you’re really ambitious, you could even do this for every meal & make it Red & Green Day)
- Make Homemade Ornaments – check out these fun Salt Dough ornaments
- Christmas craft day – find some Christmas crafts to do together to decorate your house or to give to family or friends
- Make homemade Peppermint Hot Chocolate or go out to Starbucks or a local coffee shop for a fun little outing to get a special Holiday flavored Hot Chocolate
- Decorate Gingerbread Houses
- Make candied popcorn & Have a Game Night (maybe buy a new game & wrap it for them to open – it could be from a thrift store, it doesn’t have to be brand-new – just new to them)
- Write letters to Santa – use our free printable letter to Santa
- Cut down your Christmas tree at a Tree Farm or go to pick it out from a lot
- Decorate the tree & drink eggnog
- Balloon Volleyball – set up a mini volleyball court in your house using balloons as your volleyball! This is sure to cause a lot of laughs!
- Date night with dad or mom
- Hot cocoa & Christmas books next to the Christmas tree or by the fire
- Christmas movie marathon night (or day)
- Tortilla snowflakes
- Put on PJ’s, bring hot cocoa & go see local Christmas light displays in neighborhoods (check out our copycat Starbucks hot chocolate recipe)
- Make paper snowflakes & decorate the windows, hang them from fishing line in your hall or entry way & more!
- Make edible gifts for the birds (e.g., birdseed & peanut butter pinecones)
- Make footprint reindeer or penguin (we made the reindeer one year as ornaments, but you could also do it on canvas for a fun holiday picture to hang on your walls at Christmas)
- Go ice skating
- Make red & green homemade playdough
- Sleep on the floor under the Christmas tree one night
- Read the true story of Christmas (Luke 2: 1-20)
- Write notes to each member of the family telling them how special they are & leave in their stockings to open Christmas morning
- Kids Choice day or night – Kids get to choose the meal, game, movie, and more!
- Make reindeer cookies or edible wreaths
If any of your activities involve something you will give to your kids, you could wrap those up to correspond with the appropriate date. This just adds to the anticipation and fun for them. You can see where we wrap up Christmas books to read a different Christmas book each night (these are books that we own as well as library books – it’s just fun for kids to unwrap & be surprised by the book each night)
Here are a few examples of things you can wrap up::
- Chocolate Advent Calendar
- New Christmas PJ’s
- Wrap a new-to-them Christmas book or movie that you’ll read or watch as a family
- Give them a new (or new-to-them) toy Nativity set and then act out the Christmas story
- Wrap up the fixins’ for popcorn & movie night in a fun basket or tub!
- Gather allowance money & put in the Salvation Army bucket (or even better, volunteer as a bell ringer to help raise money for your local Salvation Army – we will be doing that this year again with our whole family – my girls had a blast doing this last year)
- Have a shopping date with mom or dad to buy a gift for their sibling(s)
- Bake & take cookies to a local organization like a nursing home, veteran’s home, hospital, youth center, etc
- Bake cookies & bring to your local fire station (maybe they’ll even give you a tour of the station & the trucks)
- Make gifts or treats for the neighbors & deliver them together – we always do this one day close to Christmas
- Gather up toys to donate – this has an added bonus that it also clears the way for new toys coming at Christmas
- Make Christmas gifts for teachers
- Adopt a family or a child for the Christmas season – thru Toys for Tots, a local angel/giving tree, your church or school – have your children help you shop for the items
- Go Christmas caroling in your neighborhood or at a local nursing home, hospital, rehab center
- “Pay it Forward” Day – look for opportunities to pay it forward such as buying coffee for the person behind you at the coffees shop, give the cashier a gift card at the store you are shopping at, and any other random opportunities you come across where you can do something nice to “pay it forward” to people
*You can find more activities & inspiration on our Pinterest Christmas boards.
Random Acts of Kindness Activities:
Hopefully this gets you a good start on ideas that you could include in your 25 Days of Christmas! Now, it’s your turn – we’d love to hear what type of fun activities you like to do as a family to celebrate the Christmas season?
More Advent Ideas for Families:
- 25 Days of Christmas – How it works & Ideas for Advent Calendars (can do this for 12 Days, 5 Days, you name it) – intentional activities to spend time together as a family during Advent Season
- Read a Christmas Book each night & wrap it up to countdown to Christmas + a list of our 40 favorite Christmas books
- Christmas Tree Cones –simple & fun activity to do with kids as a Christmas activity
- Free Printable Letter to Santa – tips on writing a letter to Santa & where to send it as well as a free printable letter
Photo Credits to My friend Sarah from Chickie Momma Crafts for the beautiful advent calendar