- Cardstock for the cover
- Some ribbon
- Paper lunch size bags, a variety is fine
- Hole Punch
- Post It Notes to write down your Random Act of Kindness or Gratitude.
1. Fold the paper lunch bags over to the fold of the bottom of the bag and cut off the bottom.
2. Cut out cover slightly larger than largest size paper bag.
3. Punch holes into bags and cover.
4. Tie ribbons.
5. Decorate cover. Print a copy of the cover here.
To make the Gratitude Journal into an Advent Calendar, use post it notes for each day and write down a Random Act of Kindness to do that day.
On days where it’s impossible to do a Random Act of Kindness, simply write down what each member of the family is grateful for.
Here are some ideas for Random Acts of Kindness:
1. Hold the door for someone.
2. Take the time to thank someone for something they do that is generally unnoticed.
3. Give a sincere compliment.
4. Put change in a stranger’s parking meter.
5. Make a small donation of something you purge from your house. It can be used books for the library book fair, a small bag of canned food for a food bank, or gently used clothes for a local charity like Cradle to Crayons.
6. Pick up trash at the playground or park.
7. Pick up dog poop on the sidewalk or park that isn’t from your dog.
8. Weed the neighborhood park or school playground.
9. Bake cookies for the local firemen.
10. Cheer for the opposing sports team that your child is playing against when they do something amazing.
11. Recycle something you don’t usually do.
12. Rescue spiders that wander into your house or other critters.
13. Donate food to a local food pantry
14. Donate used clothes to a charity.
15. Hold the door at drop off.
16. Do a household chore that is usually not your responsibility.
17. Turn off all excess lights in the house.
18. Help someone with their job.
19. Teach someone who needs help.
20. Let someone go in front of you in line.
21. Be polite on the road.
22. Offer someone a piece of gum.
23. Share your umbrella.
24. Say a cheery “Good Morning”
25. Say something nice about someone.
What are your favorite Random Acts of Kindess Ideas? Please share!
p.s. Thank you to my friend Melissa B for sending me this Read Together Advent Calendar fun idea from Holidaze.
Wrap up twenty-five children’s books and put them under the tree with a special blanket next to them. Before bed each evening, your kids choose one book to open and read together…until Christmas.
MaryAnne from MamaSmiles has Picture Book Advent Calendar too!
p.p.s. For more Random Acts of Kindness Ideas, I did 48 two years ago to celebrate my birthday.
12 Days of Shopping with Jeanette of Tiny Rotten Peanuts
Day 2: Gifts That Give Back (Mine, Jeanette’s)
Day 3: Gender Bending Gifts for Kids (Mine, Jeanette’s)
Day 4: Gifts for Those Impossible to Shop for (Mine, Jeanette’s)
Day 5: Gifts to Open Minds (Gifts for Kids Who Hate Art and Reading, Jeanette’s Reluctant Artists)
Day 6: Oops, I Did It Again; Worst Gifts Ever (Ugly Holiday Sweaters, Oh So Tacky Christmas Gifts)
Day 7: Gifts to Steal from Loved Ones (Mine, Jeanette’s)
Day 8: Left Brain/Right Brain Gifts (Mine, Jeanette’s)
Day 9: Gifts for Those Easily Forgotten & Unique Client Gifts
Day 10: Gifts for New Year’s Resolutions (Mine, Jeanette’s)
Day 11: Giving and Receiving Unwanted Gifts & 15 DIY Gift Ideas
Day 12: The Art of the Thank You Note (Mine, Jeanette’s)
p.p.p.s. For more DIY holiday ideas, check out Living Locurto’s Living Creative link up.
Follow PragmaticMom’s board DIY Instead of Buy: Kids on Pinterest.
BEST #OWNVOICES CHILDREN’S BOOKS: My Favorite Diversity Books for Kids Ages 1-12 is a book that I created to highlight books written by authors who share the same marginalized identity as the characters in their books.
16 thoughts on “DIY Gratitude Advent Calendar: Day 1 of 12 Days of Shopping”
So glad my craft inspired you! Love the way yours turned out!
I am so bad at crafts so THANK YOU for the inspiration. Yours is so beautiful! I’m going to use mine in December and I’m excited to actually use a craft that I made! I hope my kids like it! We have a purchased Advent calendar with chocolate as well for backup!
I LOVE the gratitude advent calendar & ideas for random acts of kindness!
Wonderful! Thanks so much for sharing!!
Thanks so much! I think it will be fun to do in December with the kids. They do love putting coins in other people’s meters and other random acts of kindness. Hopefully, it will be a holiday advent tradition for us!
Love this idea, especially that you are sharing it now before December!!!
Thanks so much Dee!
I needed a month to actually make the book so I figured my readers who were interested would too. It’s not hard to make but it took me a few weeks to gather up the supplies and find the time to sit down and do it. You don’t need to make it though. Any kind of paper to track the acts of kindness would work but I love the idea of saving it each year as a keepsake.
This is such a great idea! I love how simple it is to make, and I especially love that you listed ideas for RAKs.
Thanks so much! I had a hard time thinking of RAKs when I did my birthday list so I wanted to share the ones I found most satisfying, fun and easy to execute. I’m glad you like my craft attempt. As you know, I’m bad at crafts but we will put this puppy to use come December 1st!
I love your RAK list! Not sure I would have the guts to save a spider ( they freak me out a little) but my husband found a baby snake in the basement and set him free the other night 🙂 I think my favorite RAK during the holidays is letting people go ahead of me in a line at the grocery store. It’s fun to make someone smile with a small act of kindness.
I am freaked out by rodents so I would have trouble saving a mouse! I love your RAK of letting someone cut in front of you in line. I am going to borrow that one for our Advent calendar in Dec! Thanks!!
Hello! Great post. I love your list of 25 Days of gratitude and random acts of kindness. I’m definitely going to try to do as many of these as I can. Thank you for the inspiration. 😀
Thank you SO much for your kind comment! I’m so glad you are going to try it too. I think it’s going to be a lot of fun for December Xmas counting down.
I love this Advent Calendar idea 🙂
Thank you so much Catherine! I’m excited to try it out this year. We usually do the waxy chocolates which are fun too but it will be fun to try to execute RAK ideas. I know my kids loved helping me when I did it for my birthday.
Such a wonderful idea, thanks for sharing via Mommy Monday!
Thanks Mrs. AOK!!