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the days of Advent, 
we wait and prepare in joyful anticipation 
for the celebration of Christmas- remembering the Incarnation event, 
welcoming Jesus into our hearts today and
 preparing for                              Christ’s coming 
again                                                                  in glory

The Advent Season

Lots of ideas from Loyola Press for making Advent come alive for your family. 
Advent crossword to do as a family from Pflaum.
Advent from
Here are 8 super-simple ways to celebrate Advent
Watch a 2-minute video about Advent from Busted Halo
Enjoy Advent by James Martin SJ.
Advent Wreath
Here is everything you want to know about the advent wreath as well as a blessing and weekly prayers.
This sheet about the advent wreath and suggested prayers can be run off. 
and for little ones an Advent Wreath to color
Why Rose or Pink on the third Sunday? check it out.
You may enjoy a short video about the Advent Wreath.

Advent Calendars
Join us in trying a REVERSE ADVENT CALENDAR this year.
An Advent Blessing Jar helps you appreciate and give.
On this one you just color a section each day.
And don't miss the Busted Halo version.
Here is a Random Acts of Kindness Advent Calendar.
Follow the Christmas story with this paper chain calendar.
The US Bishops have a Family Advent Calendar.

 Progressive Nativity Scene 
Set up your nativity set by adding pieces each week during Advent.
Here's another example of this activity.

You can build a nativity scene out of Legos. There are instructions here and here.

You can color and cut out this nativity scene.

Jesse Tree
Follow the stories from the family tree of Jesus and create a Jesse Tree.
And be sure to check out the photo of a great Jesse Tree window.
Special Advent Days

Saint Nicholas - December 6
Here you will find a color sheet from Paper Dali.
Dress a St Nick paper doll.
For information about St Nicholas here is a good article to read from
Find a wealth of information, ideas and activities at St Nicholas Center. This site is fantastic!

Our Lady of Guadalupe - December 12
Read the original story here or here written for children 
and adults can read or listen at this site.
And here is a crossword puzzle to print and complete.
Paper Dali has pictures to color with super explanation of colors and design.
A simple play telling the story.

St Lucy - December 13
For information about the importance of St Lucia Day.
Catholic Icing has many ideas for celebrating in your home (from 2009 and 2010)

    including everything from recipes to paperdolls.
Arthur has a story about celebrating in Sweden and here is more information.
Paper Dali has a picture to color too.

O Antiphons - begin December 17
Here is a good explanation of the prayers.
Families with older children might like to create a set of O Antiphon ornaments.
You are probably most familiar with them in this musical form.

Christmas Novenas- Dec 16-24
St. Ignatius of Loyola suggested a Christmas novena to commemorate the Holy Family's journey to Bethlehem; in 1580, St. John of the Cross prepared a more elaborate version of the travel; seven years later, Spanish missionaries introduced it in Mexico. 

Las Posadas
This is the Hispanic Catholic tradition reenacting the story in Luke 2: 4-7
Follow the Mexican tradition for the 9 days before Christmas.
Listen to the traditional Posada song.
And read this reflection on Las Posadas. 

Simbang Gabi
In the Phillipines the Christmas novena becomes Simbang Gabi with a daily pre-dawn Mass and special treats.
This celebration is also popular in the Chicago Archdiocese. (Thanks to Mary Hess for this link)

Advent for Teens

Check out these ideas for Advent.

And don't miss the Busted Halo Advent Calendar.

Watch some of these seven short videos for advent.

Here's a three part Bible Study for teens from

This page gives some amazing information about Our Lady of Guadalupe.