My son is desperate for a Lego advent calendar. At $39, I can’t do it. But by the time I waver I’m sure it will be sold out.
There seems to be a trend towards increasingly expensive advent calendars. For both kids and adults. If you’d been quick enough, you could have bought a $499 Diptyque advent calendar. This trend has caused me to reflect on the whole advent calendar tradition. I love the idea of a countdown to Christmas. I also think there are plenty of ways to do it, without breaking the bank or losing a sense of wonder.
Advent calendars date back to the mid 1900s with one of the first ideas being the advent wreath. Lighting a candle each evening as Christmas approaches. I still think that’s a beautiful idea.
Here are some other advent calendar ideas. (That don’t cost the earth) …
The Online Advent Calendar
Each year my boys enjoy the JL advent calendar. It’s an online, interactive advent calendar with plenty of nostalgic charm to keep me entertained as well. You can also order them for friends, making it a cute Christmas card alternative.
The Giving Box
Each day in the lead up to Christmas place a non-perishable item into a box. Once it’s full, donate to a food bank or other charity.
Scratchie Advent Calendar
This is a cute idea for a teacher you love. Buy 25 $1 or $2 scratchies and hang them onto some string via small wooden pegs, with a small card with the date in front.
Pokemon Card Advent Calendar
Similar to the above idea, but with a new Pokemon card each day. (It’s likely this will be our lego calendar concession).
Decorations Advent Calendar
This is a lovely idea for someone who is having their first Christmas after moving out of home. Use a box with dividers and place a decoration into each divider, one for every day in the lead up to Christmas. By the time the 25th rolls around their tree will be full of beautiful decorations. You can either make the decorations or buy them in bulk to keep costs reasonable.
Book Advent Calendar
I am completely in love with this book advent calendar idea from Artsplorers. The idea of exploring books together is such a special one. Particularly sharing that quiet time together in the lead up to Christmas. And you can keep it inexpensive by buying from Op-shops, wrapping old forgotten favourites or even borrowing from the library.
The following ideas require an advent calendar you can fill yourself. There are plenty of gorgeous ideas on my Advent Calendar Pinterest board if you want to make one. Or if you aren’t feeling crafty, there are lots in store around this time of year.
Gratitude Advent Calendar
Rather than receiving something everyday, everyone in the family considers what they are grateful for. Write it down and put into your advent calendar. At some point during the Christmas to New Year break, read them together as a family.
Experience Advent Calendar
A beautiful friend of mine does this with her kids. She comes up with 25 experiences – things like going to the park, making decorations, Christmas baking, watching a Christmas movie etc. – and places them into her advent calendar. Each day her children have a new Christmassy experience to enjoy together.
Joke Advent Calendar
In the timeless tradition of Christmas “crackers” – place Christmas-themed jokes into the advent calendar and start each day with a smile.
Do you have any other advent calendar ideas?
Splurged on any advent calendars?