#AdventCalendar Days 9 – 16

If you follow me on Facebook or Twitter, you’ll know that I created a new activities-based Advent Calendar this year. No more cheap (and yucky!) chocolate! Here are the activities we did for December 9 through 16:

Dec 9 Make Christmas cookies – We made some Christmas-shaped sugar cookies. My daughter helped me make the cookies, and they both helped decorate them.

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Dec 10 Christmas party near the Grandparents – Every year, my dad’s Rotary Club has a Christmas party for the kids and grandkids of the Rotarians, but the real focus is the kids who attend/use services at a local organization who works with kids with special needs. When we lived at the family farm, my son was part of their IBI program. I was so proud of my kids…they had to wait for almost an hour for their turn with Santa, and they did awesome!

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Dec 11 Write letters to Santa – My daughter gets very frustrated with written expression so, instead of doing a “traditional” letter to Santa, we got together with my man’s son and the daughter of a friend of his. They cut out items from a toy catalogue, and created their letters for Santa, with one rule, they needed to include something in their lists for someone else. It looked like a disaster zone for a while…

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Dec 12 & 13 Turn the fridge into a snowman – I added this to the list twice because we just plain didn’t get around to doing it…two days in a row! Maybe it will make another appearance. Not sure yet.

Dec 14 Playdate – My daughter had a playdate with a girlfriend. Nothing necessarily Christmas-y but she was so excited (and it gave me some time to study for my exam which was on Monday). They got to play outside a lot because we had a huge dump of snow. They had a great time, including using one neighbour’s driveway entrance as a slide. 😉

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Dec 15 Autism Ontario Christmas party – Our local chapter of Autism Ontario had their annual Christmas party this afternoon. It was chaotic and wonderful all at once. Kids could eat and see Santa in one room; crafts upstairs in another room. Santa was fantastic! He was so patient, giving every child the time and space each needed, and every child went home with a gift.

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Dec 16 Play in the snow – I had my final exam in the evening so honestly, I was too focused on studying to really organize anything, so the activity in the Advent Calendar for today was to play in the snow when they came home from school. Happy kids!

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Days 1 – 7 of #AdventCalendar

This year, I decided NOT to give my kids daily doses of cheap chocolate in a store-bought Advent Calendar. At a local mom’s group event, I made an Advent Calendar, and the kids have been loving it! If you follow me on Twitter, you’ll have seen what the activities have been each day. Now that I think about it, I’m not sure why I haven’t been updating daily on Facebook too…I will rectify that. 😉

Day 1: Decorate tree at my BFF’s. It was the first time I’ve seen a white artificial tree in person. She gave my kids and my man’s son  the choice of which decorations to use: purple and silver, or blue and silver. Two votes for blue and silver. So pretty!

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Day 2: Bake cookies with Easy Bake Oven. My daughter actually squealed with joy for this activity. Honestly, we don’t use her Easy Bake Oven very often and, after seeing her joy and my son’s curiosity, I think we’ll need to do it more often.

Day 3: cut out paper snowflakes. My son wasn’t interested in this activity, but my daughter and I had a great time. We happily cut out our snowflakes while chatting away about everything and nothing. 😉

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Day 4: create a snowman craft. My son wasn’t interested in this activity, but my daughter did a great job!

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Day 5: Let’s make our lists for Santa. Unfortunately, didn’t get around to it as my daughter wasn’t feeling well so I’ll reschedule it for another day this week.

Day 6: Watch Christmas videos on Youtube together. I showed the kids this video as my fav:

http://www.courtneyheard.com/video-doesnt-completely-blow-mind-might-want-check-pulse/

On Days 7 & 8, the kids were at their dad’s. As soon as my daughter came home, she asked me what she missed in the Advent Calendar. She wasn’t worried about missing “boring” activities for me like “clean the house to get ready for decorating”.

Pre #Christmas Fun!

Some pics from our Pre-Christmas activities:

My daughter‘s handprint mitten ornaments, painted completely by her.

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My son‘s handprint mitten ornaments, red is painted by him. I painted the borders.

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Cookies decorated at my son’s IBI therapy Christmas carol-singalong. My son decorated the one on the left; my daughter, the one on the right.

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My daughter on the City’s merry-go-round in the Holiday Train display they hold every year.

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My son HUGGING Santa!!!! He initiated the hug!!

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It’s been an amazing pre-Christmas time, and we still have a few more activities planned.

Crazy busy weekend ahead, filled with #fun and #fundraising

This weekend is one of those weekends where there are so many things to do in town and not enough time to do it all, that I’ve had to be very selective with what the kids and I can actually attend. At first, it started out with two events: a mom’s group get together where we have all decided that we will use the excuse of Mother’s Day to get together and exchange cookies; and a birthday party. 

After talking it over with the kids this morning, we have decided to also go a book sale that will be raising money for a local arts organization (my daughter is hoping there will be comic books there for sale), and taking some old electronics to the local computer store for recycling (and the proceeds will be going to the local foodbank).

Childhood friends of mine are also in town, so they will be stopping by this weekend too (one of whom I haven’t seen since high school!).  We’re also hoping to go to the park at some point since the weather is beautiful, and perhaps the library.

The best thing about this weekend is that, besides the gas, ingredients to make the cookies and whatever we might buy at the book sale, it’s relatively inexpensive.  Who says fun needs to be expensive?  It’ll be filled with tons of fun and social time for the kids and I, and we’ll be helping our local community.

What are your plans for the weekend?