Here are a few of our decorations that I am really excited about!
Mantelpiece Noel Letters
They are all around 9 inches (Some are 8.5, some are 9.5, I don't remember their exact sizes but the "around 9 inches" rule will serve you well... The "N" and "L" are wooden letters and the "E" is a cardboard letter. The "O" is just a little grapevine wreath, and the star was a cardboard Christmas ornament. I already had all of the paint, so this project cost me less than $15!
Advent Calendar & Nativity Scene
I also made our Advent Calendar. I found this open-backed frame on clearance at Michael's, and found the little envelopes on sale at Hobby Lobby. In all, this project probably cost me about $15. Truthfully, it still isn't completely finished, but I've got a few days! ;) I plan to put a bible verse on each day's card, along with a little prize or piece of candy for each of our kids!
This gives us the opportunity to reward our kids for doing good to each other and other people, and at the same time, it allows us to talk to them about how we give gifts to God, who is invisible to us. (We help others, we serve the poor, and give to orphans, etc.)
Then, on Christmas Eve, we will add up the money that we have saved and pick out a gift for Jesus from our World Vision catalog! We will place the "gift" by our nativity set, and on Christmas morning the boys' pouches will be filled with small gifts that symbolize the gifts that God pours down on us.
Burlap Nativity Wreath
To make it, I just bought a foam wreath from Hobby Lobby, wrapped it in a long, skinny strip of burlap (With dots of hot glue here and there to hold it in place.) and then added the burlap squares. I made several burlap squares, about 3.5" by 3.5". Then, I put the end of a pencil into the center of the square and wrapped the burlap down over the pencil. I added a dollop of hot glue to the bottom of the burlap, and then used the pencil to push it down onto the wreath. Do this over and over again until your wreath is covered! This project costs less than $10! All you need is some ribbon, 1/2 yard of burlap, the foam wreath, and a hot glue gun!
Have you decorated yet? What are your favorite Christmas decorations? And favorite things about Christmastime?