2016 Advent Calendar

I wish I could say that my  life is just so exciting and busy that I haven’t had time to blog but I would be BIG FAT LYING!

The truth?

I have been falling asleep waiting for a little minion to fall asleep. You know how it goes. They want you to lay next to them and you do. You also fall asleep with your clothes still on and dishes in the sink.

Since I know the next couple of weeks is going to be the same, I decided that I will NOT do a daily Advent Calendar post. Instead, I will share it all here and now and update daily.

So, you should keep coming back: daily, weekly, or just after Christmas to check out the goods!

 

2016 Christmas Advent Calendar (Activities and Music)Will be updated  as we go along. 

Dec. 1- Make a Manger: We actually got the supplies from the Husbands church. We went last week for a parents meeting and left before the kids were able to do the activity so we brought it home and waited for the 1st to do them.

Music: Pentatonix- Dance of the Sugar Plum fairy– Because it’s Aca-Awesome.. that’s why!

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Dec. 2- Write to Santa Claus/ Write your wish list– My kids aren’t the kind of kids who asks for a lot of things. In fact, they struggle to find something they want. It’s not that they get everything their hearts desire. It’s the opposite really and I have to say, I truly believe their happy so there’s nothing they really desire. Sure they’d like all of the fun toys and games they see but when it comes down to it, they don’t even ask for them! This year, Santa needs to bring a Remote controlled car, An Anna doll, and an Elsa doll that sings. See…. easy going kids!

Music: Chuck Berry- Run Run Rudolph– It’s not Christmas unless you watch Home Alone.. right?!

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Betta wants Elsa

Dec. 3- Movie Night!– My girls love movies. They get super excited when we get to throw down the pillows and blankets. They had a busy morning at MILs house and buy the time evening came and baths were done, they were too exhausted to wait for dinner. They had cookies and milk and didn’t make it past 30 minutes of Toy Story 2! (which was the movie they chose to buy for Christmas)

Music: Darlene Love- All alone on Christmas– I seriously love this song and I don’t know why it’s taken me so long to find it! You’ve heard it every year, and in almost every holiday movie.!!

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Dec. 4- Take Christmas Pictures: My absolutely favorite thing to do. What started as a silly photo with Miss V became a tradition I can’t break. I love being able to put my collage together and see how much the girls grow year by year.

Music: Shakin’ Steves- Merry Christmas Everyone– A random song that popped up on YouTube that is so cheesy that I had to include it!

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Dec. 5- Elf Yourself!: While my husband is a bit of a Grinch when it comes to silly Christmas things, the girls and I just love them. Elf Yourself is one of the few times I don’t listen to the husband and do it anyway. We watch it over and over again and it never gets old.

Music:  Bing Crosby- Mele Kalikimaka: When it’s super cold outside, sometimes the only thing to help you keep warm are thoughts of sitting at the beach.

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Dec. 6- Play with Christmas Playdough! The only thing that makes this Christmassy is the fact that we added a bunch of glitter. May not have been the smartest thing to do but it was pretty while it lasted.

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Music: Jackson 5- Santa Claus is Coming to Town: Probably one of the better versions of this song. Total Funk and I love it! I could listen to it all day!

Dec. 7- SICK DAY– Miss V started complaining of ear pain the night of the 7th which is just perfect timing considering the 8th is a Holiday in Italy. That means we had to wait until the 9th to see the Dr. She had an ear infection and was on antibiotics for a week.

Music: Jose Feliciano- Feliz Navidad: It’s not Christmas until this jam comes on. Then you’re all, “Ok.. I heard it once, that’s enough!”

Dec. 8- SICK DAY- We decided not to continue our Advent Calendar activities while V was sick. It would not have been fair to her to miss out on the fun.

Music: The Beach Boys- Little Saint Nick: Am I the only one who totally digs this song? I love, love, love this song.

Dec. 9- Pizza and  Movie- Every once in a while we’ll have pizza parties and let the girls eat in their room. Husband had gone to Carrefour the day before and scored at Dr. Pepper!! It was then stolen from me by the girls.

Music: Louis Prima- Pennies from Heaven: By this point we’ve seen Elf so much that we’ve gotten almost memorized. This song is one we always sing along to.

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Dec. 10- Make Christmas cookies– With ear pain under control, it was time to resume our activity list. Each girl was allowed to invite one friend to come over and make/decorate cookies. They had a blast but I think next time, we’ll have to settle for just one friend at a time.

Music: Glee cast- The Most wonderful day of the year: Sometimes you need a good cheesy tune to get you into the holiday spirit.

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Day 11:  Hot Chocolate night– We usually have milk and cookies or something similar on Sunday nights. So it’s not unusual to have Hot Chocolate for dinner. During Christmas though, is the only time we go all out. Nutella, whipped cream and sprinkles. SUGAR OVERLOAD!!

Music: David Archuleta and The Mormon Tabernacle Choir- Silent night: Slowing it down a bit. Bringing some spirituality into the mix.

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Day 12: Making Christmas Cards- Since Miss V had missed a day of school the week before, she had to catch up on homework. So we bumped our original plans for another day.

Music: Pentatonix- Hallelujah: I try not to post multiple song from the same artist/group but this version of Hallelujah is just…….. well, chilling. It’s seriously so good.

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Day 13: Color a Christmas picture- To be honest this is usually my go-to activity for anything. I’ll either print out a lot of pictures or let them color something that’s from the back of a box.

Music: Andrea Bocelli & The Muppets- Jingle Bells: One of the girls favorite songs although Miss E is afraid of Animal and Miss C doesn’t care for any kind of puppet.

Day 14: Dance around to Christmas Music– Sometimes we get all caught up in doing activities and watch movies that we’ll go days without actually listening to any Christmas music. Tonight we turned the TV off and sang and danced during dinner.

Music: Wham- Last Christmas: A classic.

Day 15: Read a Christmas Story: They asked to hear the greatest story ever told… from the original source.

Music: Zooey Deschanel & Joseph Gordon-Levitt- What are you doing New Year’s Eve?: These two… just magical. The description on this video says they’ve been friends for years and it shows.

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Day 16: Salt Dough ornaments: I’ve never made them before but the girls do them every year at school so I figured we’d try. While they were easy enough, Miss C thought it would be more fun to make her own shapes and them poke as many holes as possible. (they have yet to be painted)

Music: The Late Late Show with James Corden- All I want for Christmas is you Carpool Karaoke: This was probably my most favorite Carpool Karaoke and it’s only because of the mix of musicians in this! It’s the greatest thing ever!!

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Day 17: Invite friends for Dinner- Even though Holidays are busy, we always try to have friends over for dinner. We had invited our friends Even and Debbie and their boys to come over and enjoy some Tostadas!  (sadly no picture was taken)

Music: Brenda Lee- Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree: This song means so much to me. I tell the girls the same story every year. My mom has this album and I would put it on while decorating the tree. I can still hear all of the crackles and pops of the LP.

Day 18: Make a Christmas craft– We missed our Church Christmas party because it was the same day we had friends come over for dinner so we received our gift from Santa today. Inside was a wooden craft that the girls colored. (Again.. no pictures)

Music: Eartha Kitt- Santa Baby: Another classic.

Day 19: Make a special dessert- My mom sent me a package with some Reese’s Peanut Butter cups because I had planned on making a special treat for the girls’ teachers. One of my go-to treats was Peanut butter brownies. Brownie batter spooned into a mini muffin pan and place a peanut butter cup. Simple and delicious!

Music:  Frank Sinatra- Have yourself a Merry Little Christmas– Nothing gets me in the Spirit of Giving more than baking special treats…. and this song helps too!

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Day 20- Make a family ornament– I saw this idea on Pinterest. Make a salt dough- like dough and put everyone’s fingerprints on it. Bake and paint. Sadly the ornament didn’t get done. I started running out of time on my baking so we had to leave this one out.

Music: Harry Connick Jr- It Must Have Been Ol’ Santa Claus– This song is more than 20 yrs old and it’s still a favorite. I remember first hearing it in High School during my band days.

Day 21: Go to a Recital– Every year there’s a small Christmas program at the girls’ school. They did such a great job singing and of course seeing their faces when Santa arrived with goodies bags made all of my running around worth it. (I’m the class mom for Miss E’s class. That means I spent the better part of December looking for Teacher gift ideas and candy for the candy bags.

Music: Mille Luci per la solidarietà’– This was one of the songs they sang.

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Day 22- Make Ice cream tree cones: We never did get around to making these. I saw them on Pinterest and thought they be fun but at the end.. decided against it; mostly because I didn’t want to deal with the clean up during the school week.

Music: Jennifer Hudson- O Holy Night: There’s something so special about Ms. Hudson’s version of this song. Maybe it’s the simplicity or the spirituality behind it but I think it truly captures the spirit of the season.

Day 23: Prepare Christmas treat bags– Every year I give the girls’ teachers cookies for Christmas. At first they were surprised and wondered why I would do something like that. After I explained that it’s something we do back home, they happily accepted and look forward to them every year!

MusicStevie Wonder- What Christmas means to me– I had to Shazam this song because I couldn’t figure out who sang it. Like the song from Day 3, this one is used very often in Christmas movies.

Day 24: Go to another Recital– Last day of school and Miss V had her recital today. Some of the kids in her class she’s known since she was 3 so it’s so fun to see them all big, singing and doing little skits. They also did a number in English and there’s nothing  funnier (to me) that little Italians singing with a really thick accent!!

Music: Roberta Bonanno- A Natale Puoi (At Christmas you can): A very popular song at Christmas time, sometimes used in commercials so it always get stuck in my head. This year, Miss V sang it all the time!

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