Make an Advent Stick

Guest Post

Jo From Artsy Fartsy Mama kindly sent us this craft idea.

Jo Advent 03

My daughter goes to a Steiner school and last festive season in an effort to avoid the commercialism of Christmas and find meaning in it, there was a lot of discussion and sharing of ideas. Much of the inspiration came from Denise McDonough who spent some time at a Steiner school in Scotland. Between us we came up with this ‘Advent Stick’.

As the child opens up a little package each day they move through the earthly natural kingdoms – earth, plant, animal and human until they discover something more ‘heavenly’ on Christmas Day (the tiny felt & bead baby in walnut shell pictured below). So rather than a chocolate each day – they find a little natural treasure – 6 items in each category.

For example:

Earth – stone, crystal, pebble, sand, charcoal, glass bead, ochre

Plant – lavender pillow, dried flowers, seeds, gumnuts, pods, bark, paper craft such as origami or a tiny notebook

Animal – shell, bone, feather, felt animal, walnut turtle, beeswax candle, goat hair (collected at the farm!), knitted chick

Human – tiny gingerbread men, wool angel, felt doll, peg doll, little letters, a sweet (if you choose)

Jo Advent 02

Jo Advent 01

These are just some suggestions and many of them make beautiful decorations for the tree. Last I wrapped them all in white tissue paper but this year I have different colours to differentiate between the 4 realms. You can then use some cotton string or raffia to tie off each parcel and tie it on to your stick (which could be collected from a special place/tree and kept from year to year). Alternating sides of the stick means as your child rips off a bundle there is still a tail of tissue paper to keep the stick looking attractive. I do this as a surprise for my children, but you could involve an older sibling in the process.

6 Responses to “Make an Advent Stick”

  1. Lila des bois


    I was desperatly looking for non commercial ideas to do with my 4 years old! I love it!!!

    Have Happy Holidays!

  2. Rebecca in rural Ireland

    Oh thank you so much for this, its just perfect. It really captures the spirit of Christmas and for me the true gift is the giving of time and thought, which is exactly what this does.

  3. Lauren

    I agree with everyone else: this is a beautiful, incredibly creative idea. I don’t have kids, but can see myself making this anyway. I’ll have to brainstorm for some more “animal” ideas that are animal/vegan-friendly tho. Perhaps found animal bits (like the feather or shell), representations of animals (like a felt creature), or small homemade gift FOR an animal? Anyway, thanks for sharing a great idea!

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