DIY advent calendar

Last year the bug hit me to do a proper advent calendar for the girls. Truthfully, I needed something to boost me from my holiday malaise. What better way than to greet each day with squeals of joy? Previously, all they’d experienced were those cardboard ones with a chocolate treat behind each window. A few years back, I brought two Scooby-Doo themed ones home from Paris. Bonus points for the days that had a little toy inside, but still after the first few days they lost their excitement factor.

I imagined a beautiful quilt with a pocket for each one, exactly what one of my best friends has for her kids. Since my urge to set up an advent calendar came after the first of December, time was of the essence. No way I could wait for shipping (note to self: check sales after Christmas this year!). I hit up a few stores at the shopping strip in Kingston. I found one at in Home Goods for whopping $149. Not happening, at all. It seemed a crazy price to pay. So, I decided to make my own ad hoc, a DIY advent calendar.

DIY Advent Calendar |

I bought a bundle of sturdy cardboard gift cards at Target, and hit up a little store, Sparkle, in Woodstock, that has an eclectic array of items. Later that day, I set about writing jokes, creating my own search a word puzzles, and attaching baubles to the gift tags. And then each day, for the remainder of December, I hung a new one on the tree for the girls to find. December was by far the easiest month to pry them from their beds in the morning.

DIY Advent Calendar |

This year I remembered some puzzle websites I used to use to help Isabella with her vocabulary words a few years back. You add the words you want to use, and presto, you’ve got your own custom search-a-word or crossword puzzle. I reduced the print size, and will use them to attach to the tags this year. And I must confess, I did pick up two cardboard advent calendars last week. I saw them at Claire’s, and my inner kid kicked in. I mean, how could I resist an advent calendar with a trinket from Claire’s tucked behind each sealed door? So, this December will be filled with a double dose of excitement each morning.

I hope you all had a lovely Thanksgiving holiday. The long weekend feels like a distant memory. Thankfully, I have a bit more stuffing left to make one last batch of these waffles. My mind is already counting down the days until our winter break at the end of the month.