The countdown has begun and it happens every year in the same way.
I break up with Thanksgiving because I found a prettier, jazzier little number called Christmas.
Thanksgiving, you are authentic and delicious but Christmas? Well, it's hard not to let Christmas suck you in with all its texture and shine and its "I don't give a shit what you think of me, I'm wearing these five hundred and sixty-two hanging balls because I like them" attitude.
Christmas, I'm yours until January (that's about the time I remember that our relationship is not sustainable).
For our Christmas countdown this year, I decided to step it up a notch with a calendar that would produce something tangible for Vivi to remember this holiday season by. The beauty in this advent calendar lies not in its textured design, but in the dainty little charm bracelet it will produce for my four year old. Each day she will remove the corresponding charm and add it to her bracelet.
By the end of the calendar, Vivi will be left with a cute little bracelet full of charms to jingle all the way to bed Christmas eve.
25 Safety pins
Miniature tree ornament balls
25 Jump rings or charm loops
Jewelry-making pliers or similar (optional)
Chain bracelet for charms
Foam board, approximately 20" x 32"
Box cutter or similar
2 Skeins of yarn
Hot glue gun
Foam paint brush
Trace a tall and thin triangle onto the foam board. You can do this by drawing a baseline with your straightedge, marking the center of the baseline and drawing a perpendicular line straight-up until you have reached the desired height of your tree. Mine was about 20" wide by 27 inches tall.
Cut out the tree by scoring the foam board with the boxcutter and gently bending until it breaks.
Coat the tree with a thin layer of Mod Podge and douse evenly with glitter. This will add a hint of sparkle in between the wrapped yarn strands.
Secure the end of the yarn using scotch tape to the back of the foam board tree. Begin wrapping the yarn tautly around the tree, adding small dots of hot glue as you go. A small dab is all you need to secure the yarn to the tree.
Using your sharpie, write the numbers 1 through 25 individually on the ornaments.
Using the pliers (or your hands), pull a jump ring a part by gently twisting it. Loop the jump ring through a charm and push it closed. Slide the charm onto a safety pin along with an ornament. Repeat until all ornaments are paired with a charm.
Hang each charm ornament with a safety pin beginning at the bottom with 1 and ending at the top with 25.
Note: Charms can add up in cost quickly if you let them. Since this project was geared to my four year old, I decided cheaper was the most reasonable route. I found reasonably priced charms at Oriental Trading and at Hobby Lobby in the christmas craft section.