This is how my family counts down the days to Christmas. On Dec. 1 our image of Mary and Joesph starts to travel to Bethlehem. It moves along the numbers which are taped to the wall. They are traveling toward the stable. On Christmas Eve they are just above the stable.
I put ours up high out of little kids’ reach, but you wouldn’t need to have it so high for older kids.
This idea can be simple and easy. You could simply print off the numbers and star I have created along with this lovely coloring page found on
Then, color the picture or just cut it out and use it to move along the numbers.
Move it down by one number each day.
That simple!

The Art Project:

OR if you like a bit more of a challenge, here’s how I made mine:
I say “challenge” but it’s not really as hard as you may think!
You will need:
  • Glue
  • scissors
  • the Mary and Joesph coloring sheet
  • light blue paper
  • dark blue paper
  • purple paper
  • black paper
  • sandpaper or brown paper
  • stars (can be hole-punched, sequins, stickers, or drawn)
  • The numbers to tape to the wall
  • Painters tape to add the numbers to the wall 
  • Picture putty works well for the Mary and Joseph image so it stays sticky each day as you move it.
Cut out hill shapes from the sandpaper.
Layer them on the bottom of the light blue paper.
Add a half-circle sun on the horizon. 
Layer the different colored paper, using wide strips. 
Make the black area the biggest, and dark blue area bigger than purple and light blue. 
Add a few dark blue strips to the top of the light blue area.
Add a few light blue strips to the dark blue area.
Add a few purple strips to the top of the dark blue area.
Add a few dark blue strips to the purple area, and purple strips to the black area,
Now cut the whole picture into a half-circle shape.
Trim all the edges. Then add the stars.
Cut out the Mary/Joesph picture and glue it on.
Note: You may need to put a large book on top of it till it drys so the sandpaper stays down.

It’s so much fun watching Mary and Joseph traveling to Bethlehem!

Have a blessed Advent,


  1. Jennifer,This is such a wonderful idea! I've been looking for some things to use/do for the last week before Christmas, somethings around the theme of \”Journey to Bethlehem.\” This is perfect! Thank you for sharing it. I love your blog; so many wonderful ideas.Cheryl Basile

  2. Thanks Cheryl,I'm very glad you like it! (The craft and the blog) Whenever I find a free moment, I enjoy popping in to take a look at your wonderful blog, too! ♥May you have a blessed Advent!

  3. Dear Jennifer,This is so awesome! I love it! I have to do something like this next year!! Thank you for linking to my Advent Link Up!!

  4. Jennifer, this is beautiful!! I lovelove your art work, and the idea of putting the numbers uyp high — I've got little hands in my house who love to touch and play with things!!

  5. What a great art project something my MOM would love as a gift from the kids. Thanks for sharing and now off to make one with my kids:) Thanks for linking up to the NOBH

  6. This is really cute! It can be so difficult to find good crafts that teach children the true meaning of Christmas. I would love it if you would link up to my Frugal Christmas Week so my readers can check this out as well! Thanks!

  7. What a beautiful and unique idea for an advent activity! Love it!!(I found you at An Oregon Cottage link up)Merry Christmas!!

  8. This is such a fantastic idea! I'm going to put one together tonight to share with my own kids and my daycare kids. LOVE IT!

  9. I've always had the idea to move the wise men from afar closer each day to the nativity set up to Epiphany. So I love this idea you have to bring Mary and Joseph closer to the stable over the 25 days. Gave me new inspiration, thanks!

  10. Hi Jennifer,That is so beautiful! I love the colors that you used for the sky. Have a Blessed Advent Season!

  11. Oh, this is wonderfully lovely! My daughter would have a fantastic time making the Mary/Joseph silhouette craft! We will save the stars for next year's Advent countdown! Thank you for sharing!

  12. Hi Jennifer,I've done your craft with Mary and Joseph on the way to Bethlehem and plan to do it with my first graders this weekend. (Mine is not as artistic as yours but it will do!!) Thank you for sharing your creativity and talent!

  13. This is an AWESOME activity and will really allow the children to experience the waaaaaiting! 🙂 Patsy from HeARTworks

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