Unbelievably in this hot and humid weather, it is exactly 100 days until Christmas!
I love to be organised for Christmas, especially as we have so many winter birthdays in our family that it would be too easy to leave Christmas until last minute and panic – but that’s not for me. I like to spread the effort and the cost of Christmas as thinly as possible to make it more manageable but also so I can enjoy it for even longer.
This isn’t going to be ThriftyBaby’s first Christmas but he’s definitely going to be more aware of what’s going on this year which is making me very excited to get started in my preparations for making it a special time for him.
I would love to try and commit to an entire “Blogmas” of 100 days of posting new #thriftyxmas ideas but that’s pretty daunting so all I will say for now is that I do have LOTS of ideas and I will share with you as many as possible on the run up to Christmas so you can make use of them if you’re a fan.
So DAY 100 is all about advent. I think it’s what came to mind first because advent is all about anticipation and preparation, much like pregnancy. The word “advent” actually means “coming” in Latin but I think it can be a time for reflection too and a slowing down of pace in readiness for something extraordinary.
There are lots of different traditional ways to celebrate advent, such as burning of candles but thanks to Pinterest there are even more less obvious ways to enjoy the run up to Christmas but some need a little preparation, which is why I start with this first.
Classic chocolate advent calendars can be picked up cheaply from most supermarkets and the likes of Poundshop and Home Bargains but I personally like something with a bit more thought that’s gone into it.Last year NotSoThriftyDad bought be a very sought after Yankee Candle Advent Calendar. Suffice to say I was VERY impressed and I still even have some of the candles to burn! It was a lovely gift that made me slow right down on an evening to just enjoy the Christmas scent of a new candle every day.
Of course I had to buy him the equally sought after Star Wars Lego Advent Calendar and although more expensive than a £1 chocolate advent calendar, it left him with toys he could keep and I assume (?!) allow ThriftyBaby to play with in the future.
As it was also World Play-Doh day today, I just have to share with you this amazing Play-Doh Advent Calendar for little people.
However, this year I was inspired by an idea I saw on Pinterest which really speaks to me and I hope some of you will like the idea or adapt it to fit with your families.
Last weekend I went to my local Poundshop and took a look at their book sales. There are lots of beautiful, glossy popular titles to choose from so I started counting. 24! I could pick up £24 different titles whilst stood in one place and all for a pound each. Of course I know that there are ways I could have got books cheaper but my motto is also to keep things simple (mostly because they won’t get done if it involves too much hard work!)
In hindsight it might have been nice to look for more winter/christmas related books and perhaps I’ll do this in the future, but at the time I was thinking more about which books will last ThriftyBaby the longest throughout the year.
I then stacked them in size order and wrapped them in alternate papers. Remember to pick up extra sellotape whilst you’re at places like Poundshop too – they’re great for cheap essential stationery items.
The result is a lovely stack of exciting new books for ThriftyBaby to pick at during advent and I’m certain we’ll enjoy reading him a new story each day in December before the big day itself.
I’ve noticed some people are now selling these “Advent Book Stacks” on my local Facebook selling site and I suggest if you have the time and inclination – this would be a nice little hobby earner on the run up to Christmas but I really enjoyed picking the books for my boy and will enjoy watching him open each little gift during reading time on an evening as the night’s draw in.
(Ribbon was purchased in the January sale at The Range.)