December 1st

Animal envelope party

What: Christmas calendar

Supplies: 24 envelopes, colored paper, goggly eyes, marker, scissors, ruler, glue, patience.

Duration: 6 hours. I used two evenings to make the envelopes, without the kids. 

How to: Before you start, briefly think about the type of animals you want to make. Get the paper in the right colors. And then just cut and glue until you have the desired animals. Some might look a bit weird on their own, but they will bland in just fine once you hang them together.

The story behind it: Our kids have a lot of stuff. Heaps, piles, mountains of it! And they only play with 3-4 toys on a daily basis, leaving the rest to collect dust. I think most parents recognize this. 

That’s why we weren’t keen on having a Christmas calendar with presents this year. First I decided not to have a Christmas calendar at all, but then I fell head over heels in love with the calendar the lovely people from Lekolar, a company dedicated to let children learn by playing, made out of envelopes. Such a simple yet brilliant idea!

I just had to make it as well. But what to put in it? A story. I am usually the writer in this family, but my expertise in writing mainly involves hydrogen, politics and maybe something about fairies. Minus the fairies not so inspiring for a 5-yo, who will be the one having most fun with the calendar (the 1-yo doesn’t care, I assume).

Luckily I am married to a guy, who is the master of making up bedtime stories. So I asked him, if he didn’t want to write a story for the calendar. Of course he wanted to do that, and he had just the right theme in mind. He’s written about ‘double girl’ a girl with superpowers: she can make others move really slow, while moving super fast herself. These powers she uses for good and sometimes to be a little naughty. There is also a dog side kick, called Biscuit who has a French accent and a funny hat. I mean, what’s not to like?!

We have put an episode in every envelope, which we will read to her every day. By the time it’s Christmas she’ll have a little book about all double girl’s hero acts.