I’ve gone a little crazy making stuff for advent.
I’m finding everything about Christmas to be too commercial, expensive or corporate oriented so this year now that the children are starting to get old enough to participate I’m making my own everything with my girls.

I want to start traditions with them that we can do as a family that show the Christian meaning of Christmas that is largely ignored everywhere else around us.

One of these is having an advent wreath and lighting advent candles each day to tell Christmas stories and pray as a family.

You light one new candle each week of advent. One the first week, two the second, three the third and four the fourth. Each candle has a meaning and is a good countdown and reminder of Christmas. (Meaning of Advent wreath)

With two girls birthdays and Christmas this month there wasn’t much in the budget for an advent wreath so I made one with things we had around the house:

Salt dough: 1 cup salt, 2 cups flour, 1 cup water. Knead for a while until smooth.
Then I broke it into four pieces, rolled each out to approximately 40cm long and braided the four into a rope (swapping inner and outer strands).
Then I joined them up to make a circle and made 4 holes for candles.
Then I baked it for 4-5 hours at 100 degrees until it was all hard and dry.

I then painted it brown using acrylic paint and tied ribbon around it.


I couldn’t find any purple or pink candles in the shops so made my own using 4 of our emergency earthquake supply of white candles (shhhh…)


And some purple crayons and red and white birthday candles we had around the house (see http://catholicicing.com/2010/11/make-pink-and-purple-advent-candles/)
This worked well once all the wax was properly melted. Not when you’re too impatient and try with semi melted wax!


Final result:  just need to add greenery


Salt, flour and water: free from pantry.
Broken crayons and acrylic paint: free from children’s art box
Ribbon: $2 from $2 shop
Holly and plants from garden