Not to alarm any of you, but there are only 50 days until Christmas! So that means there are only:
– 24 days until Thanksgiving
– 25 days until Black Friday
– 58 days until New Years!
We have been using these cool Countdown Clocks for Christmas for years. Every Christmas morning it goes off at 6AM, then it immediately gets reset for 364 days and counting until next Christmas. It is a little disappointing to see over 300 days but the clock gets left on the living room bookshelf and forgotten for months at a time. With the exception of a few random glances over the past several months, it had recently come back into play when it hit the T minus 90 day mark. Now it gets almost daily attention as it ticks closer and closer… Did I mention there are only 50 days left until Christmas?!
These countdown clocks only run about $12 or so, and they come in a variety of different themes, such as wedding countdown, retirement, vacation, etc. But the front face pops off pretty easily and the themed paper border can be flipped over or replaced with any design you can come up with (apparently we lost our border and need to make a new one 🙂 ).
Another pre-holiday family tradition we have been doing forever, is a Christmas countdown paper chain. We slice up construction paper into 2 inch strips and date them backwards from December 25th. Each of the kids take turns decorating each piece and draw a picture on it. We staple them together in a chain and hang it in the living room. Each day, whoever’s link is next gets removed as the chain gets smaller the closer it gets to Christmas.
The older the children get, you’d think they would start to get bored with this, but quite the opposite. We used to start this chain around December 1st. Then it started on Thanksgiving, then before Thanksgiving… This year, the massive chain was started on November 1st, our longest one yet. They sat at the kitchen table, with a jack-o-lantern tablecloth, and started the Christmas chain the day after Halloween. I am going to have to put my foot down and keep this to an after Halloween start. At least.
We also seem to have our Christmas Tree up earlier and earlier each year. It use to be a beginning of December thing. Then a day after Thanksgiving event, and then it crept to a few days before Thanksgiving. I fully expected the tree to appear this past weekend after the Christmas chain was made. My husband and kids like to wait until I get in the shower some random morning, then quickly assemble the artificial tree in the living room. They then sit in the room ignoring it and act like “What tree?” when I come down stairs. There has actually been an occasion or 2 when I have walked past it and not noticed immediately, so they think they are funny.
I accidentally mentioned that one of the YouTubers that I watch already put her tree up this weekend and upset my husband that he wasn’t first. So it is just a matter of time before I take a shower and a Christmas tree suddenly appears in the living room.
But none-the-less, don’t panic if you aren’t quite ready for the holiday season! You can make the best of the next few weeks by studying one of our holiday themed unit studies! We have a Thanksgiving Unit Study that is perfect for learning the history behind the holiday. Then we have a Jan Brett Christmas unit, which is a gentle and relaxing lead up to Christmas. It even comes with a fun countdown chain your children can decorate and use to count down the days until Christmas morning! We also have a Winter Holidays Around the World which explores a variety of holidays, from Christmas and Hanukkah, to Chinese New Year and Kwanzaa. All of these units are suitable for elementary age students (with the Jan Brett unit being geared to the youngest learners). They are a steal at just $7.95 each!
In the next few weeks, I’ll also be re-running our Educational Gifts series that I keep updating, which will be highlighting some of our favorite educational gift ideas. And of course, our annual Black Friday/Cyber Monday sale weeks will start on November 25. It’s one of our biggest sales of the year, so you won’t want to miss it!
Disclosure: This post contains an affiliate link, meaning I get a small commission if you make a purchase through my links, at no cost to you.
Emily Cook is the author and creator of the secular homeschool curriculum Build Your Library, a literature-based K-12 program infused with the teachings of Charlotte Mason. She writes full year lesson plans as well as shorter topical unit studies. Emily has been homeschooling her four children in Southern NH for 15 years. She is passionate about reading aloud to children of all ages and loves to share her love of literature with others. She and her family also makes incredibly dorky videos about homeschooling, books and more on Youtube at ARRRGH! Schooling. You can follow her on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest.