Preschooler’s Christmas Advent Calendar

AdventMy son is 3 years old, which means life is starting to really get fun with him. He understands and appreciates holidays and all the activities surrounding them. So this year we’re doing a special advent calendar filled with a variety of activities, both fun and spiritual, to prepare us to celebrate Jesus’ birthday.

I have been so excited to plan our advent season this year! I think part of it is because my son loves life so much and gets excited about everything. But I also think I’m nesting…I’m 7 months pregnant and have been just a little crazy this time around. I’ve been working on Christmas stuff since October. So in addition to this advent calendar, I’m also doing these Advent Reading for the Very Young from Part of the Main (I was originally going to do this Scripture advent calendar created by AKA Design but think Part of the Main’s will be more age appropriate for my son this year).

Now I know there are about a million blogs out there with a million different advent ideas out there, but when I was researching mine, I found it was helpful to browse through a variety of calendars and ideas to be able to come up with my list. So I’m adding my advent calendar and activities to blogosphere with the hopes that it will give you some ideas when creating yours.

Preschooler's Christmas Advent Activities | Marigold Mom #advent #christmasMy goal for our advent season was to do a variety of activities to prepare us to celebrate Christmas day–not just gifts and candy. I primarily wanted to focus on Christ’s birth, but also wanted to incorporate fun crafts & activities, a very limited number of gifts, and some activities that focused on others. I also wanted to keep it SIMPLE (the holidays are busy enough as it is, plus that new baby will be here very soon), as well as to have some flexibility in case I needed to switch some of our activities around. So I decided to go with a pocket style calendar with inserts for each day that could be moved if needed. I found this pin on Pinterest and absolutely fell in love with the look of it (but wasn’t willing to spend the $80 on the box), so tried to kinda go for the same look. My advent calendar/board cost me less than $5. I bought a piece of black foam board at the $1 Store and a pack of stickers & number stickers at Michael’s. The rest of the paper, washi tape, and stickers I had on hand. 

Preschooler's Christmas Advent Activities | Marigold Mom    #advent #christmasPreschooler's Christmas Advent Activities | Marigold Mom    #advent #christmas

Preschooler's Christmas Advent Activities | Marigold Mom    #advent #christmas

Preschooler's Christmas Advent Activities | Marigold Mom    #advent #christmas

Preschooler's Christmas Advent Activities | Marigold Mom    #advent #christmasOur advent activities include the following, not necessarily in order. You may notice there are more than 24 activities; we’ve doubled up on a couple and I’ve added a few easy extras just in case something doesn’t work out.

  • Get out our Fisher Price Nativity
  • Plant a Christmas flower bulb (we got our at Trader Joe’s for $4.99)
  • Open Christmas PJs
  • Decorate bedroom with Christmas lights
  • Make Christmas ornament (this year we’re doing this one and I can’t wait! It’s so pretty!)
  • Make Snowman Pizza for dinner
  • Make Christmas Craft: Stained Glass Nativity from Meaningful Mama (she has free download)
  • Make presents for our little friends
  • Decorate Christmas cookies
  • Attend church Christmas party
  • Buy a toy to donate
  • Mail Christmas gifts to far-away relatives
  • Go to Disneyland
  • Attend local Snow Day
  • Movie Night with popcorn & hot cocoa (open mini Christmas mugs)
  • Look at Christmas lights
  • Use Nativity to act out Christmas story
  • Decorate sliding glass door (open window clings & spray snow)
  • Color a Christmas picture (I found a bunch of freebies here)
  • Go Christmas shopping with Daddy
  • Attend Small Group Christmas party
  • Read a Christmas book
  • Make Christmas pancakes
  • Apply shaving cream Santa beards and sing carols
  • Make gingerbread houses
  • Visit Daddy at work with treats
  • Wrap Presents
  • Pick up Grammy & Papi from the airport
  • Make a Christmas craft: Snow Globe
  • Read the Christmas story from the Bible

Preschooler's Christmas Advent Activities | Marigold Mom    #advent #christmas

 As you can imagine, we’re pretty excited about the Christmas season this year. Me especially…my kiddos have no idea the Christmas wonders that Mommy has planned for them for the next 24 days! I hope that your advent season is a wonderful and magical time with your family! And may we all keep in the forefront of our minds the reason we celebrate the season…the arrival of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ!

 

 

 

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Christmas Party Game: Howard the Holiday Hog (Pass the Pig)


Such a fun Holiday Party Game! Pass the Holiday Pig | Marigold Mom    Looks like so much fun! But does take a little bit of planning #christmaspartygames #partygames

This is Howard; Howie for short. And he’s a Holiday Hog. 

You may have seen me or some of my friends carefully carrying him up to someone’s door, stealthily setting him down, ringing the doorbell, then dashing back to our vehicle and wondered what kind of weirdo we are. Well our family is a part of a pretty amazing small group through our church. We’ve been part of this group for nearly two years now and just really love spending time with the other families in our group. Last year, as we were gearing up for our first annual Christmas party, my husband and I happened to see one of those giant inflatable Christmas lawn ornaments that was a pig. We got quite a giggle out of this inflatable Christmas pig, and an idea started to form in our minds. An idea for what we think may possibly be the best Christmas pre-party game there is. We named it Pass the Pig. Hence all the creeping in our friends’ yards. We promise…were aren’t usually creepers. Only at Christmas and only with each other.

Did we invent this game? Probably not. I’m sure there are other variations of it out there somewhere. But we did make up this version of it, and our small group had a blast playing. Basically, it’s similar to hot potato–the pig (Howard) is passed around from home to home until the day of the Christmas party; whoever has Howard on the day of the party loses (losers had to wear pig costumes as punishment). We created a secret Facebook group to track Howard’s travels throughout the group; we also used it to confirm delivery to a new home. And to post photos of Howard’s grand adventures as he journeyed from family to family. It was impressive how creative (and devious) everyone got with the game–deliveries, photos of Howard in their home, thwarted deliveries, etc. So this year we added categories for which prizes can be won. For full instructions, see below.

Just a note….the is a PRE-party game, meant to be played in the weeks leading up to your party. So it will take a little bit of planning and prep before hand. Ideally, we want to start playing at least 2-3 weeks ahead of time so everyone gets the pig at least once. You could also adapt this game for other non-holiday parties.

Instructions:

Such a fun Holiday Party Game! Pass the Holiday Pig | Marigold Mom    Looks like so much fun! But does take a little bit of planning #christmaspartygames #partygames

Similar to “hot potato” Howard is to be passed around from home to home until the day of our Christmas Party.

Goal: Do not be in possession of Howard on the day of the Christmas Party on December 17th. 

Rules:

If you are in possession of Howard: 

- You must keep Howard on display in your front yard/porch until you pass him along
– You must pass Howard within 48 hours of receiving him
– Refer to the Small Group Address list for possible delivery locations (if your address is incorrect, please send a group email updating your address)

If you are passing Howard: 

- You must set Howard on display in the front yard or the front porch area of the person’s home who is receiving it
– You must do it secretly so the family you’re passing it to doesn’t know about it
– You must knock/ring doorbell prior to leaving
– You must take a picture of Howard at his new house prior to leaving
– If you are discovered during any part of the passing of the pig, Howard becomes yours again, and you must deliver him to a new location within 24 hours
– After delivering Howard to his new home, you must post your picture to the Facebook group as confirmation of delivery
– If you do not have Facebook, you must email your picture to the group as confirmation of delivery

*Passing can be done at any time of day or night. However the knock/ring requirement is not mandatory after 9:00 pm.

*Passing Howard to a family who is out of town for more than two days is illegal. If you will be out of town before the Christmas party, please post those dates in the FB group.

*Howard cannot be passed after 3pm on the day of our Christmas Party.

*If you are in possession of Howard after 3pm on the day of our Christmas Party, please bring him to the party to collect your “prize”!

Prizes will be awarded for the following:

  • Best Howard Selfie (with you or someone else)
  • Best Howard Inclusion (in an event or activity)
  • Best Delivery/Thwarted Delivery (must be confirmed by photo, video, or the testimony of 3 or more witnesses)

All small group members will vote for winners in the above categories the night of the Christmas party. 

 

Howard quickly became an important part of our small group. Our children love him, bacon jokes ran rampant, we served a pig cake at our Christmas party, and someone even gifted all of us mugs with Howard’s photo on it. For a few weeks now, people have tried to casually get info out of me as to whether or not he would make an appearance again. I skillfully avoided each question, but how could he not?! So last night, I delivered him to his first home for the holiday season. And there has been much rejoicing within our Facebook group. I’m excited to see what adventures he’ll go on this year.

Such a fun Holiday Party Game! Pass the Holiday Pig | Marigold Mom

Such a fun Holiday Party Game! Pass the Holiday Pig | Marigold Mom

Such a fun Holiday Party Game! Pass the Holiday Pig | Marigold Mom #christmaspartygames #partygames

Such a fun Holiday Party Game! Pass the Holiday Pig | Marigold Mom #christmaspartygames #partygames

I had no idea that pigs were such a popular Christmas decorations, but apparently they are, because I’ve seen them all over the place. We decided not to go with original inflatable pig we saw because we were unsure who would have access to outside electricity to inflate the pig; also, we have some people who live in apartments which could make large lawn ornaments difficult to display. So we went with an acrylic lighted one instead. We got ours at Kmart. This year, I’ve seen similar pigs at Target, Home Depot, and Sears for about $40-$50. Of course, you can always tailor the game and lawn ornament to your own group–there are some pretty ridiculous lawn ornaments out there. But the pigs are just too fun. And bacon comes from pigs. And everyone loves bacon. Seems like a no-brainer to me….

Such a fun Holiday Party Game! Pass the Holiday Pig | Marigold Mom #christmaspartygames #partygames

If you decide to play this game prior to your Christmas party, I’d love to hear how it goes. Leave me a comment, post some pictures to my Facebook or Tag me on IG. Happy Hogidays!

 

 

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Feminine Pink & Gold Tribal 1st Birthday

Feminine Pink & Gold Tribal 1st Birthday | Marigold Mom #tribal #navajo #girlsbirthdayparty We all love a good stylized shoot that we can drool over, fantasizing that our event will be just as amazing and gorgeous as it was. But as we start planning (and our husbands weigh in on how much we’re allowed to spend), reality sets in and we often end up with an event that is only a shadow of that original picture. I fully understand the realities of budgeting both time and money in event planning, and my goal has always been to create beautiful and affordable events. If you saw my dreamy navajo wooded 1st birthday party and are wondering how that could translate into an actual event (because, really…who’s going to drag a bunch of stuff into the woods to have a party?), this post is for you! It’s a real 1st birthday for a real little girl (mine!) in a real home. And it uses all the same items from that unrealistic, if not gorgeous, party in the woods. Here is my baby girl’s pink and gold tribal 1st birthday.

***I’ve also done a super simple and laid baby shower with the same theme and decor. Click here to see it.***

Feminine Pink & Gold Tribal 1st Birthday | Marigold Mom #tribal #navajo #girlsbirthdayparty

Feminine Pink & Gold Tribal 1st Birthday | Marigold Mom #tribal #navajo #girlsbirthdayparty

 Food:

For dinner we served a carne asada taco bar that was delish! For dessert, we served teepee cake pops, too-pretty-to-eat cookies, grocery store cupcakes (they’re cheap and are a great space filler!), cake shop cupcakes (for the grown-ups), and probably the most amazing tasting cake I’ve ever had, made by my friend and partner in crime, Hello Brielle. She’s a woman of many talents! Finally I coordinated our drinks to match the colors of the party–pink lemonade, green limeade, strawberry-basil infused water and almond champagne (because every girl needs champagne) (but don’t worry, we didn’t give any to the birthday girl).Feminine Pink & Gold Tribal 1st Birthday | Marigold Mom #tribal #navajo #girlsbirthdayparty

Feminine Pink & Gold Tribal 1st Birthday | Marigold Mom #tribal #navajo #girlsbirthdayparty

Feminine Pink & Gold Tribal 1st Birthday | Marigold Mom #tribal #navajo #girlsbirthdayparty

Feminine Pink & Gold Tribal 1st Birthday | Marigold Mom #tribal #navajo #girlsbirthdayparty

Feminine Pink & Gold Tribal 1st Birthday | Marigold Mom #tribal #navajo #girlsbirthdayparty

Feminine Pink & Gold Tribal 1st Birthday | Marigold Mom #tribal #navajo #girlsbirthdayparty

 

Decor: 

I loved this dreamy, whimsical navajo theme! It all came together so beautifully and was wonderfully feminine and girly. Pink, white, gold and mint green….feathers, flowers, dreamcatchers, glitter….and a few rustic elements like wood stumps and wood signs. Feminine Pink & Gold Tribal 1st Birthday | Marigold Mom #tribal #navajo #girlsbirthdayparty

Feminine Pink & Gold Tribal 1st Birthday | Marigold Mom #tribal #navajo #girlsbirthdayparty

Feminine Pink & Gold Tribal 1st Birthday | Marigold Mom #tribal #navajo #girlsbirthdayparty

Feminine Pink & Gold Tribal 1st Birthday | Marigold Mom #tribal #navajo #girlsbirthdayparty

Feminine Pink & Gold Tribal 1st Birthday | Marigold Mom #tribal #navajo #girlsbirthdayparty

 

Favor/Activity & Guests:

Our favor/activity for the evening was a headband station. In my mind it was so perfect. But in reality, by the end of the night there were feathers, buttons, beads and rhinestones EV.REE.WHERE. But our little guests and their moms and dads had so much creating their own custom headbands and wearing them during the party, it was worth it. One dad even got a little crazy and made his 2 week old daughter a whole set of headbands. It was so sweet! Feminine Pink & Gold Tribal 1st Birthday | Marigold Mom #tribal #navajo #girlsbirthdayparty

Feminine Pink & Gold Tribal 1st Birthday | Marigold Mom #tribal #navajo #girlsbirthdayparty

Feminine Pink & Gold Tribal 1st Birthday | Marigold Mom #tribal #navajo #girlsbirthdayparty

 I just had to add this outtake…..At least one guest is smiling.Feminine Pink & Gold Tribal 1st Birthday | Marigold Mom #tribal #navajo #girlsbirthdayparty

The Birthday Girl:

Here she is….my sweet (and exhausted after a day of partying) baby girl. Except with her first birthday behind her and a new sister on the way, I guess she’s not really a baby anymore. {sob} This girl loves her carbs and sweets (just like Mama) and did the best cake smash I’ve ever seen. I’m talking face-planted-in-the-cake-eating-it status. And she cried when we took it away (which is exactly what I feel like doing when my cake is gone). Feminine Pink & Gold Tribal 1st Birthday | Marigold Mom #tribal #navajo #girlsbirthdayparty
Feminine Pink & Gold Tribal 1st Birthday | Marigold Mom #tribal #navajo #girlsbirthdayparty

Feminine Pink & Gold Tribal 1st Birthday | Marigold Mom #tribal #navajo #girlsbirthdayparty

Feminine Pink & Gold Tribal 1st Birthday | Marigold Mom #tribal #navajo #girlsbirthdayparty

Mommy and Daddy with the birthday girl…2014-11-15_0001

And finally, our super amazing family photo. I’ve resigned myself to the fact that we just won’t have any perfect family photos for many years. And that’s ok. 

Happy 1st birthday to our sweet and silly Abby Lolo. We love you, baby girl!!
Feminine Pink & Gold Tribal 1st Birthday | Marigold Mom #tribal #navajo #girlsbirthdayparty 

Vendor Credits:

Styling, Planning, Dreamcatchers, Invitation: Marigold Events 

Photography: Blyss Photography (Instagram: @BlyssPhotography)

Cake, Happy Birthday print: Hello Brielle Designs

Cake Topper: Pink Poppy Party Shoppe

Cupcake Toppers: Pelemele

Cookies: Grunderfully Delicious

Teepee Pops: Karen’s Custom Cakes

Fabric Tassel Banner & Gold Tipped Feathers: Feather & Fray

Wood Signs: Oak & Ivory

Florals: Rare Sophisticate

Teepee: Sugar Shacks Teepees

Birthday Girl’s Headband: Lemon & Lace

Birthday Girl’s Necklace: Hip Chixie

Brother’s T-shirt: 32nd & Elm

Daddy’s T-shirt: Ralph Lauren

Mommy’s T-shirt: Feather 4 Arrow

 

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Simple Tribal Baby Shower

I love being able to re-use items from events. It makes event planning so much easier. And that’s exactly what I was needing for this super simple tribal baby shower. My friend, Tiffany, is about to pop out baby girl #2, and even though she really wasn’t in need of anything, we wanted to throw her a little shower to honor her and her new baby girl. And let’s be honest, we wanted to get together, eat good food and drink wine (1/2 glasses for the expectant moms, of course). We all just wanted a super chill, laid-back girl’s night. And that’s just what we had. Hello Brielle and I joked that we did the least amount for this event that we ever done for any event ever. This is no reflection of our love for our friend; just a demonstration of the fact that you don’t have to get all crazy and elaborate to have a lovely and enjoyable event.

**To see the original stylized shoot, click here**

**To see a pink and gold tribal inspired real 1st birthday party, click here**

Simple Tribal Baby Shower | Marigold Mom #tribal #navajo

Simple Tribal Baby Shower | Marigold Mom #tribal #navajo

Simple Tribal Baby Shower | Marigold Mom #tribal #navajo

Simple Tribal Baby Shower | Marigold Mom #tribal #navajo

Simple Tribal Baby Shower | Marigold Mom #tribal #navajo

DSC_0310

 

Vendor Credits:

Photography: Tiffany Nicole Photography

Dream Catchers: Marigold Events

Tassel Banner: Feather & Fray

Wood Sign: Oak & Ivory

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Dreamy Navajo 1st Birthday Party

Dreamy Navajo 1st Birthday | Marigold Events  #navajo #tribalMy baby girl just turned one. And it took me forever to figure out what to do (I knew what I was doing for my son’s first birthday about 1 month after he was born). And finally, one day, it hit me. The whole tribal, navajo genre is huge right now. I’ve seen a number of stylized wedding shoots with this theme, but not really any children’s parties–especially not any dreamy, girlie ones like what I was envisioning. So I decided to throw my little girl a dreamy navajo first birthday. And it was amazing.

Dreamy Navajo 1st Birthday | Marigold Events

Dreamy Navajo 1st Birthday | Marigold Events  #navajo #tribal

I was able to collaborate with some absolutely incredible vendors for this event. It was such an honor to work with each of them, and I highly recommend them all. A list of these vendors can be found at the end of the post. 

I hope you enjoy this dreamy, wooded, navajo first birthday party as much as I did. xoxo

Decor:

Dreamy Navajo 1st Birthday | Marigold Events  #navajo #tribalMy vision was a to create a dreamy and whimsical girly birthday party for my little girl. Colors would be primarily white and gold, along with mint green and a blush pink. I wanted glitter-tipped white feathers, lacy dream catchers, a ruffly tee-pee, gold antlers, and flowers, all alongside some rustic elements. I absolutely love how everything came together; it was absolutely perfect and just what I wanted.

Dreamy Navajo 1st Birthday | Marigold Events  #navajo #tribal

Dreamy Navajo 1st Birthday | Marigold Events  #navajo #tribal

Dreamy Navajo 1st Birthday | Marigold Events  #navajo #tribal

Dreamy Navajo 1st Birthday | Marigold Events  #navajo #tribal

Dreamy Navajo 1st Birthday | Marigold Events  #navajo #tribal

Dreamy Navajo 1st Birthday | Marigold Events  #navajo #tribal

Dreamy Navajo 1st Birthday | Marigold Events  #navajo #tribal

Dreamy Navajo 1st Birthday | Marigold Events  #navajo #tribal

Dreamy Navajo 1st Birthday | Marigold Events  #navajo #tribal

Dreamy Navajo 1st Birthday | Marigold Events  #navajo #tribal 

Food:

Dreamy Navajo 1st Birthday | Marigold Events  #navajo #tribalOur dessert table was graced with a lovely cake from Cake Wars winner, Bake You Happy, as well as adorable teepee cakes made by Karen’s Custom Cakes. I absolutely adore the glittery cupcake toppers by Pelemele. What a great shop to work with! They custom designed toppers for this shoot and got them to me quickly despite being another continent away. Finally we had absolutely gorgeous cookies from Grunderfully Delicious (she’s local but ships her cookies!!). 

Dreamy Navajo 1st Birthday | Marigold Events  #navajo #tribal

Dreamy Navajo 1st Birthday | Marigold Events  #navajo #tribal

Dreamy Navajo 1st Birthday | Marigold Events  #navajo #tribal

Dreamy Navajo 1st Birthday | Marigold Events  #navajo #tribal 

Guests: 

Dreamy Navajo 1st Birthday | Marigold Events  #navajo #tribal

Our adorable guests were outfitted by a number of Etsy and Instagram shops. 

2014-10-21_0006Leather Braided Rose Headband: Lemons & Lace

Necklace: Hip Chixie

Buck Tee: Sandilake Clothing

Demin Shorts: Dimps DeminDreamy Navajo 1st Birthday | Marigold Events  #navajo #tribalLittle Wander Tee: Sandilake Clothing

Pants: Elizabeth Ann Handmade

Dress: Elle Ollie HandmadeDreamy Navajo 1st Birthday | Marigold Events  #navajo #tribalSkull Tee: 32nd & Elm

Arrow Pants: Elizabeth Ann Handmade

Gold Dreamcatcher Tee: Monkey Bug

Chevron Shorts: Nola Fionnah

Dreamy Navajo 1st Birthday | Marigold Events  #navajo #tribalWILD Tee: Feather 4 Arrow

Arrow Pants: Monsters Under My Bed

Dreamy Navajo 1st Birthday | Marigold Events  #navajo #tribal

Dreamy Navajo 1st Birthday | Marigold Events  #navajo #tribal

Dreamy Navajo 1st Birthday | Marigold Events  #navajo #tribal

Dreamy Navajo 1st Birthday | Marigold Events  #navajo #tribal

Vendors:

Event Styling, Dreamcatchers, Table Runner, ONE Highchair Banner: Marigold Events

Photography: Blyss Photography (IG: @BlyssPhotography)

Cake: Bake You Happy

Cookies: Grunderfully Delicious

Teepee Cakes: Karen’s Custom Cakes

Teepee: Sugar Shack Teepees

Feather Garland, Fabric Tassel Garland: Feather and Fray

Wood Signs: Oak & Ivory

Chevron Table: Redemption Grove (IG: @redemptiongrove)

Happy Birthday Print: Hello Brielle Designs

Cake Topper: Pink Poppy Party Shop

Cupcake Toppers: Pelemele

Florals: Rare Sophisticate Events

Tassel Garland: Erin Groves (IG: @eerin_kay)

Napkins: Charleston Charms

Arrow Embossed Wood Forks: My Mom via her Stampin’ Up amazingness

 

Clothing Vendors (Including IG accounts): 

Little Wanderer and Skull Tees: Sandilake Clothing 
@sandilakeclothing

Dotted pants; Brown & Navy Triangle pants: Elizabeth Ann Handmade
@elizabethannhandmade

Arrow pants: Monsters Under My Bed
@monstersundermybedco

Gold Dreamcatcher Tee: Monkey Bug Shop

Purple WILD Shirts: Feather 4 Arrow
@feather4arrow

Blush and gold shorts: Nola Fioannah
@nolafionnah

Leather Fringe Necklace: Hip Chixie
@hipchixie

Leather Braided Rose headband: Lemons and Lace
@lemonsandlace

Georgia’s dress: Elle Ollie Handmades
@elleolliehandmades

Shea’s shorts: Dimps Denim
@dimpsdenim

 

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