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Here is my annual list of what we have done to celebrate Sinterklaas, Advent and Christmas. This year we struggled, as now both children are at school and have after-school activities there is less time to fit in an extra activity. So while we did do them all, some got done on later days. Weekends often ended up with multiple activities to do in order to catch up.

Sat 17 Sinterklaas arrive & beaver party
Sun 18 See Sinterklaas in town centre, put shoes out
Mon 19 smile at everyone today and look for ways to help
Tues 20 make a christmas wreath for the door with pinecones and pompoms
Wed 21 put shoes out
Thurs 22 make pictures for Granny
Fri 23 treasure hunt
Sat 24 put shoes out
Sun 25 make photo for our Christmas card
Mon 26 put coins on the parking meters
Tues 27 Make Sint hats
Wed 28 put shoes out & take shoes to school
Thurs 29 make jam tarts for neighbours
Fri 30 make shoes for Lidl
Sat 1 Sinterklaas at beavers & put shoes out
Sun 2 give out jam tarts to neighbours – both houses
Mon 3 think of things you’re grateful for
Tues 4 collect shoes Lidl
Wed 5 school Sinterklaasfeest & pakjesavond
Thurs 6 Make cards to go in library books for the next reader
Fri 7 buy Christmas tree
Sat 8 put up Christmas decorations
Sun 9 Santa Tram
Mon 10 sing carols
Tues 11 shop for food bank
Wed 12 read Christmas story and act it out
Thurs 13 make Christmas decorations Granny gave us
Fri 14 write Christmas cards for teachers & classmates
Sat 15 Beaver’s Christmas meal & make gingerbread
Sun 16 decorate gingerbread house
Mon 17 tell silly jokes to make everyone laugh
Tues 18 make paper chains
Wed 19 school Christmas dinner
Thurs 20 school Christmas service
Fri 21 make mince pies
Sat 22 ice skating
Sun 23 winter station
Mon 24 popcorn & Christmas film

Again it is a mix of community celebrations, craft activities, and giving back. Our annual gift to the neighbours (this year of jam tarts rather than biscuits) continues to elicit confusion, and this year we had a new group of neighbours to visit. But I continue to emphasise to the children the importance of giving in this season, especially as this time of year is book-ended by both of their birthdays. So, if we’re not careful we have two and a half months of them listing all the things they want to have. So I try to balance that with an expectation that they have to give things too. And I will continue to do so.

Blessings of the season – may the celebrations of the birth of our Saviour bring you joy.

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