DIY: Countdown to Christmas

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Count down to Dec. 25 with a homemade 12 days of Christmas calendar. Forget the partridge in a pear tree — this DIY craft idea is filled with fun activities to spend quality time together as a family leading up to the main event.

What you need:

1 medium-to-large corkboard
12 small gift bags or envelopes
1 package of thumbtacks
12 gift tags
Wrapping paper
Ribbon or garland
Numbered stickers (1 to 12) or stencils and ink to create your own numbers
An assortment of 12 chocolates or candies
Tape

Instructions

1) Set aside 12 small gift bags or envelopes (or a combination of both). Alternatively, brown paperbags, baby socks, boxes or burlap sacks can also be used.
2) Select 12 (or make up your own) of the following activities to complete as a family:

Decorate the tree
Take a Christmas card photo (ugly sweaters are encouraged)
Go skating
Watch a holiday movie
Have hot chocolate
Write a letter to Santa
Tour the best decorated houses in the area
Go see a Christmas play
Bake cookies (or reindeer cupcakes) for Santa
Make and decorate a gingerbread house
Read a Christmas story
Play board games
Get a picture taken with Santa
Open a gift on Christmas Eve
Wear new pajamas to bed
Open presents!

3) Write your chosen 12 selected activities on the back of 12 gift tags.
4) Fill small gift bags or envelopes with chocolate or candy.
5) Place each of the 12 gift tags with activities inside every envelope or attach one to each bag.
DSC_4951IMG_1775 6) Cover a corkboard in wrapping paper of your choice.
7) Attach two strips of ribbon or garland on to the corkboard. One should be near the top and the other near the centre. Tape excess pieces on the back of the corkboard.
8) Lay out the small gift bags or envelopes on the corkboard to make sure it looks pleasing before attaching each piece with a thumbtack along the ribbon or garland line.
9) Using the numbered stickers, stick the numbers 1 through 12 on each bag, envelope or gift tag. They can be placed in order counting up or down to 12 or out of order so it takes people in your household a few seconds to find the next number.
10) Place the corkboard on display and you’re ready to start counting down the days to Christmas.
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