Introducing: December LYBHolidayL and Advent / Holiday Traditions Link-up

December is on Friday, can you believe that? I know I'm a broken record over here. "Time passes. What?!?" But I feel like some months sneak up on me more than others, and December is a Big Deal as far as months go, you know?

{Live Your Best (Holiday) Life: December Edition}



As you know, I teamed up with Alexandra all November long on Live Your Best (Holiday) Life for Less, a fun challenge we created to help us focus on self-care, gratitude, and contentment during a month that tends to be busy and often stressful. Since December wrote the book on busy, stressful months, we thought it would be a good idea to continue our challenge for one more month. Our prompts feature even more ways to slow down and spend your month more intentionally. Just as we did last month, we'll be sharing on Instagram as well, so be sure to follow us (@shealennon, @simplyalexandra12) there too.

We would love for you to join in as much or as little as you want; do what works for you!




{LYBHolidayL December - Week 1}


Here are some ideas for the first few days. Just like we did in November, each Monday we'll share our ideas for the coming week's prompts.

December 1 - Make hot chocolate. This one is pretty self-explanatory. I think Jona will happily join me for this one as well. And since December 1st is Friday, at least he won't be bouncing off the wall on a school night. :)

December 2 - Shop your closet for holiday outfits. We don't have a lot of any fancy holiday get-togethers, but at the same time there are a few occasions that I do like to dress up for. I know I have some under-used items in my closet that are waiting for a time like this to be worn, like embellished sweaters and extra bling-y necklaces. A couple of years ago I shared a post on easy ways to add holiday glam to your look - check it out here.

December 3 - Start a new holiday tradition. In last month's #LYBHolidayL, one of the prompts was to talk about traditions with your family. One tradition that I'm excited to start this year is a family Advent calendar.

{Announcing: Advent Calendar and Holiday Traditions Linkup}


Because Alexandra and I just can't get enough holiday cheer this year, we decided to partner up on one more little project for the holiday season. Maybe you haven't been able to participate in Live Your Best (Holiday) Life for Less. Maybe you're not big on daily challenges at all. Maybe, like us, you want to do ALL THE THINGS when it comes to adding joy to the holidays. If any of these things are true, consider joining us on Wednesday, December 13th for an Advent Calendar and Holiday Traditions Link-up.


We will both be sharing our advent calendars, but please feel free to link-up any holiday related post. I'd love to see posts about your holiday traditions, how you like to decorate for the holidays, or fun activities you like to do with your family. We purposefully wanted this to be open ended so that we can all inspire and bring joy to each other.


{Advent Calendar: Ideas}


As I mentioned, I will be sharing the advent calendar I made. I talked a little bit about it last week but my calendar this year is a combination of family activities, books, and little treats. With two small kids I don't have a lot of extra time to make anything super involved or complicated. However, I wanted to do something fun to count down the days to Christmas.

Below are a few more ideas to get your advent calendar juices flowing, if you're wanting to put one together but don't know where to start. I tried to choose options that are fairly simple since there's not much time left.

- Beer advent calendar. Does this not look fun? Sure there are ones you can buy, but you could make one for the beer-lover in your life for a lot less. Often, big liquor stores will let you "mix a six" and choose different beers to make a six pack. That would be the perfect way to do this--obviously it would get pretty expensive to buy a six pack of every kind.

- Family activities and bible verses. I like the idea of combining a family activity for each day with a Bible verse to read. For something like this you could even write these down on slips of paper and put them in a jar to pull out every day to make it really easy to make. She includes the activities she plans to do, but again something like this is easy to make your own.

- Shoe organizer calendar. If you like to do an advent calendar with little goodies, a shoe organizer is perfect for this. She just used stencils and spray-painted the numbers, and that would make it really easy. (Personally, I'd skip the step of adding the wool background and just hang up the shoe organizer and call it good.)

- Book advent calendar. You know I love this one, from one of my favorite bloggers and blog-buddies of mine, Anne at In Residence. In fact, I had originally planned to do one like this but in the end decided to do a hybrid of my favorite calendar ideas. She of course makes hers so lovely and color-coordinated, but you could do something as simple as giving your kids a new book a day, no wrapping needed. (Use your library for this! Don't buy 25 NEW books! Unless you have the money to buy 25 new books... then go for it. She includes book recommendations but you can find great ideas for Christmas books at Everyday Reading as well.)

- Refrigerator advent calendar. How cute is this? Little paper sacks (or just use colorful paper), washi tape, done! There is no way this one would last all month at my house--little grabby/curious hands would pull those suckers off in no time, but in the future I will try this one for sure.

- Advent garland. Finally, here's one I did a few years ago for Aaron and I. It's a mix of activities and little treats.

Do you like to do advent calendars? Do you make or buy them? 

We would love to have you join us for this fun link-up, for the December challenge, or for both! Be sure to check out Alexandra's blog as well to see how she's planning on kicking things off.

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