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By Helen Bowman

Try an advent story
Reading is fun every day. Why not try an advent storybook? Read one chapter a night as a family to prepare for the big man’s visit. 

Sweetie Christmas tree
Create an edible advent calendar by making a Christmas image using your favourite sweets. Craft a Christmas tree out of gummy bears, a Christmas star from chocolate buttons or an angel from midget gems. Then enjoy a little treat every day as the sleeps melt away towards Christmas morning.

Create an activity advent calendar
If you’d rather steer clear of the edible advent calendar, why not create an advent based on activities? Write out 24 little things to do to get the kids involved with and open one every day. Try Christmas baking, crafting decorations, tidying out the toy cupboard to make room for new toys – the possibilities are endless.

A kindness advent jar
Whether you need to shift from the naughty to the nice list, or you want to make sure you’re where you need to be, kindness is even more magical in the run-up to Christmas. Write out 24 random acts of kindness and stow them in a jar. Every morning, pick out a note and try to fulfil the kindness during the day. Holding open doors for strangers, write a letter to someone, donate a toy to charity – there are so many small ways to be kind.

Christmas bunting
Make some beautiful bunting in the run-up to Christmas. Cut out 24 bunting pieces and decorate one every day. Start to string them up around the house. By the time you’re leaving milk, biscuits and carrots out for the special visitors, you’ll have an incredible Christmas bunting string to enjoy.

However you celebrate the countdown to Christmas (and whether you have small people to share it with or not), take the time to slow down and enjoy something about every day.

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