A few months ago I had looked into the Lego winter collection. As a mom of only boys, I thought it could turn into a fun family Christmas tradition for us to get a new piece of the collection each year and put it together. Also, my boys are 2 and 5 this year, and I wanted to start doing some sort of advent calendar/activity. A week ago, I decided to put the two ideas together and create my own Lego advent activity where my son will get part each day for 24 days!

We purchased the Lego Winter Village Cottage as our kit for the calendar.  Next came the hard part: dividing the 1490 pieces in 24 days. My first step was to go through the two instruction booklets to chart out how many pieces were used on each page and figure out the best places to break it into days. I also used a calendar to take days of the week into consideration. This way he can do a little more on weekends, and I made sure week days where he would be in school would be a little lighter. I also decided to have him build the large cottage first, then the items around it. The instruction books have directions for the smaller items

Once I figured out how to divide the pieces out, next came the more time intensive part of sorting through all 1490 pieces. Thankfully my husband helped me with that and we knocked it out over a few nap/bed times. We went by the guide I had created and found the blocks on one page of the instruction booklet at a time until we had all the pages for the given day. Unfortunately while we were sorting I hadn’t yet figured out how I was actually going package them, so we just put them into sandwich bags temporarily. We ended up with a small bag of left over pieces, which we are  assuming are truly left over pieces since all Lego sets tend to come with extras.

Initially, I was hoping to get small gift boxes or something similar to put the pieces in for each day. However, since we were looking for what to put them in on November 30th, I decided instead of spending a lot of time hunting, I’d just make origami pouches for them. I used to enjoy doing origami before I had kids, so I knew that was a good back up plan for me. We bought a pack of scrapbooking paper, so I had nice 12×12 squares to make large pouches from. If I had planned ahead a little better I probably would have gone to a craft store and gotten Christmas scrapbooking paper, but instead I just went with cute paper that isn’t Christmas themed. As my husband pointed out, it looks like cute wrapping paper, so it works. Each day just needed one pouch with the exception of Day 15, which required 2 pouches.

So, I made the pouches (you can do a quick search on Pinterest “origami pouch” for instructions. They only require 4 folds each, so they are pretty quick to make. I then printed out “instructions” for each day on card stock, and cut them out to put into each pouch. I put the Lego pieces for each day in little goodie bags and tied them with ribbon, then put the bag into the pouch with the instructions. I used a silver sharpie to write the number for each day on each pouch, and arranged them in a basket we already had. I am excited to show it all to my son tonight and start 24 days of Lego fun! Next year I plan to get the set in October or early November so I can get it taken care of and out of the way early. I also plan to keep and reuse all the origami pouches!

Submitted by: Miranda, Laveen, AZ