Three Tools for Celebrating Advent with a Toddler + Nativity Sale

by jessicaturner on December 1, 2011

Tonight we are going to  be kicking off the advent season with Elias and I am SO excited.

Here are the items we are using to help Elias understand the true meaning of Christmas.

1. Cradle to Cross Wreath

This hand carved wreath and figure of Mary is a beautiful new heirloom we invested in this year. Each night after dinner we plan to light the candle and talk about Mary and Joseph making their way toward Bethlehem. Elias is fascinated by candles and my heart is joyful at the thought of the quiet beauty of celebrating Advent in this way.

My friend Ann’s son, Caleb, and her children make each one of these wreaths. The ship from Canada, so if you ordered one today you would definitely have it for the second half of the Christmas season and in time for a Christmas gift. The wreath also has extensions so you can use it during the Easter season too.

2. Truth in the Tinsel: An Advent Experience for Little Hands

I am not normally an ebook girl, but oh my word. If you have a child under 7, Truth in the Tinsel this is the best $4.99 $3.99 (20% off price with code: momcreative) you will spend this year. This ebook includes a daily scripture, lesson and ornament craft for the Advent season. Don’t let the craft scare you – they are super, super simple and can be made with things you have around the house. And if the idea of doing something daily overwhelms, Amanda has modified schedules in the book too.

We will be attempting to do the daily projects that Amanda presents. Elias loves projects and I think every day he will look forward to our time together. It is also a great way for us to bond (Mama loves crafting!) while teaching him about Jesus. I plan to get the supplies out every morning so that I am not scrambling in the evening after work. (This weekend I may just put a box together with everything, but since I just got the book, I didn’t have time to do that yet.)

Truth in the Tinsel is truly amazing for little ones. I can’t recommend it highly enough!!

BONUS/ADDITIONAL RESOURCE: If you have older kids or you are looking for something for yourself for Advent, check out Ann Voskamp’s free Jesse Tree Advent devotional.

3. Children’s Nativity

I think it is so important to have a nativity that your child(ren) can interact with. We have two that I love- one by Fisher Price and one by DaySpring. We got the DaySpring children’s nativity for Elias’s room this year, and he has really been enjoying it.

He has been talking about all the people, telling stories and acting scenes out. It has been delightful to observe. We oftentimes will sit beside him, ask questions and experience the nativity with him.

The generous folks at DaySpring agreed to mark their children’s nativity down to $19.99 for TODAY ONLY for Mom Creative readers (regular price: $34.99). Plus, you can get free shipping on orders over $25 with the code shipping25 (maybe put some cards or a small clearance gift item in your cart). Shipping is otherwise $6.45, so it makes sense to add a $5 item and get free shipping!

This is the perfect item to add to your family’s Christmas decor or give to a friend or loved one for Christmas. DaySpring has a limited supply of these nativities, so take advantage of this sale and order one today. Readers in the past have talked about how expensive the Fisher Price nativity set is (almost $50), and I think this is a great alternative.

BONUS: You can also get 40% off (TODAY ONLY) my favorite Christmas home decor Nativity Hurricane Candle Holder Trio with the code INDAY1 – making it just $35.99 instead of the regular $59.99.   Sales no longer available

How do you celebrate advent with your children?

If you are on Facebook, consider sharing this post to encourage other families with young children during this advent season. Thanks!


Post shared on Ann’s Walk with Him Wednesdays.

Disclosure: compensated affiliate links used

{ 16 comments… read them below or add one }

Becky December 1, 2011 at 6:57 am

I am SO excited. Thanks for sharing the DaySpring link. Just ordered the Nativity! I bought the Cross to the Cradle wreath last year and it is such a special part of our Christmas now. In fact we just lighted the candle with the boys this morning. I read the Christmas story in Luke to them:)


Jessica December 1, 2011 at 8:12 am

We have a traditional advent wreath on our table, and every night at dinner, we’re lighting it as we pray and read the day’s devotion from the devotional booklet our church put together. We have a kids nativity Kate can play with too.


Patricia/nyc December 1, 2011 at 9:29 am

We put up a Jesse Tree, where everyday we read a specific scripture that starts with the story of Jesse & outlines the lineage to the birth of Christ on Dec. 25.; there is a simple ornament to go with each reading (we made them last year). I keep each day’s reading in an interactive Advent calendar that also has a mini treat (candy cane, etc.) It’s lot of fun & my daughter (will be 7 next week) loves it!


Patricia/nyc December 1, 2011 at 9:30 am

OH!! Jessica, did you see that the new Project Life binders are in?!? I ordered mine yesterday…Turquoise…will get it tomorrow! YAY!! :)


Sheila December 1, 2011 at 9:30 am

We love celebrating Advent! We have a few Advent calendars we open but by far the favorite is one I got a few years ago – its a magnetic one by Kurt Adler & it is so great (link here was cheaper a few years ago but best $$ ever spent. The girls love to wake up & see what the next figure will be & we talk about the journey of Mary & Joseph. We also light our Advent wreath (well we started that on Sunday) and do crafts that are in a book we got a church. Our church has great Advent books & one we really like for my older girl is called “What Color is Christmas” and it goes through the journey starting with Adam & Eve, has simple bible passages so kids understand & then a seek & find for every day. My struggle will be finding time to do everything!

Thanks for the nativity link – we do have the little people one which I add onto every year, & my mother in law got both of the girls their own for their rooms so they were excited to put them up already. I got the dayspring one for my newborn & I bet he’ll love it when he gets older.
I hope everyone has a wonderful Advent!

We have so many Advent resources I hope I find time to do all of them!


RefreshMom December 1, 2011 at 10:24 am

I love Advent too. Our family has a couple of traditions that we all really look forward too; I’m excited to finally begin them again. One of them is reading a Christmas-themed story each evening. (I’ll be sharing the different books on my blog, if you’re looking for suggestions.)

We have a special Advent calendar that has an ornament for each day that we hang on a mini tree with a verse we read that accompanies each one. We also have several Nativity sets, (some more child-friendly than others).

We don’t put up our regular tree until the 15th, so for the first two weeks of December, all the reminders of Christmas in our house point specifically to the coming of Christ. Since we’ve been doing these things for the past few years, I feel like I carry Advent in my heart all year. I love reaching this month when I can share in these traditions with others.



Nathalie Hardy December 1, 2011 at 11:41 am

You are awesome. That is all.


Vicki P December 1, 2011 at 12:22 pm

Wow, the timing of this post is amazing. I had a Little People nativity sitting in my shopping cart overnight at Family Christian’s web site. Right now it’s discounted to $23.99 ($39 reg.)… I was trying to decide the shipping to use. I LOVE this nativity even more. The expressions on the little faces are adorable — and LOVE the sheep!

I’m so happy to follow your site and get to take advantage of discounts through your relationship with DaySpring. What an amazing blessing. I was SO tempted with the 30% off last week but didn’t order. Now I did today!

thanks so much.


Amy Ruth December 1, 2011 at 1:55 pm

I ordered the Advent wreath as well and LOVE it. The quality is amazing. I also purchased the book and I am so excited to start it. This year, for the first time, Hallmark is offering an Advent Nativity ornament. You turn the dial every day for another part of the story. It runs $30 but well worth it. My girls love it too. Thanks for the great ideas.


Mandi Richards December 1, 2011 at 5:56 pm

I just ordered that children’s nativity set! Our baby isn’t even born yet (he/she is currently 4 days late!), but I couldn’t pass up that great deal so I got it early for next year! Thank you so much for working out that offer for your readers!


Danica December 1, 2011 at 7:44 pm

My mom got my daughter the Fisher Price nativity set this year .,, she already has fun playing with it (she’s 2). I’ve looked at the Advent wreath that Anne’s family makes … I think I may ask for that for Christmas. Thanks for sharing the children’s nativity. I decided to order it to have as well. I love having the nativity sets that are children friendly. I’m still trying to figure out what to do for Advent with my daughter. I don’t think we’ll do something every night because unfortunately I won’t be home a couple of nights in the next couple of weeks. Thanks for all of the ideas. I can’t wait to try some of Amanda’s ideas from Truth in Tinsel.


Sara Shay December 1, 2011 at 9:41 pm

Its so good to know other people who think the same! We are using an Advent “House” this year instead of wreath. I am more excited about this year than I have been about Christmas in quite a while. And for the reasons of Christ – not gifts!


LauraP December 3, 2011 at 8:05 am

As I’ve been putting together my advent plans for my daughter, I realized that I need to re-familiarize myself with the Christmas story! My daugher has been asking a lot of questions that I don’t know the answer to, since she started practices for the Christmas program at church! (She plays “Horse” and even has a line – she’s only 3 so we’ll see how that goes!)

Anyway, here’s what we’re doing to countdown to Christmas.


Joanne C. December 7, 2011 at 11:40 am

Im going to order the nativity set from Dayspring, however im not sure what code to use to get the special discount.
thanks for always providing ideas. I have a 2.5 year old and i would like to start him on the right path and these are great ideas!


jessicaturner December 7, 2011 at 11:53 am

INDAY7 is the code to use today – that will get you 40% off.


Emily December 7, 2011 at 1:33 pm

I was just about to put a post on (in)courage asking about ideas for toddlers so thanks for this! My little one will just be turning two next month but I’m hoping to invest in these things for next year!


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