One delight of the holiday season is found in a traditional Advent Calendar, everyone joyfully anticipating what’s behind each calendar door, the feeling of Christmas in the air and of secrets and possibilities. Always a tradition in my family home and a holiday staple originating in Germany over 100 years ago, the Advent calendar is used to celebrate the season all over the world.
My earliest memory of a calendar was watching my mother unfold a large glittery 3-fold Advent card and inviting me to pry open one of the tiny paper doors to see what was underneath. It was the old-fashioned paper kind, where the gold and white glitter would rub off on my fingers.
If I wasn’t careful when I opened a door, the whole card would fall over and take me several minutes to get it standing it upright again. Sometimes, I would sneak into the formal living room, where it sat on a large table with the nativity scene, and open doors in advance – carefully pushing them back in place so no-one would be wiser. Over the years, all the paper doors began to hang slightly ajar and it faded to a decorative memory.
This holiday, I’m designing a new Advent Calendar and stocking it with miniature ornaments, inspirational messages, tiny candy and little gifts. I found two DIY Advent Calendars that are my fave picks, as my vision is to match my new winter wonderland decor and Christmas tree decorations by creating a snow-covered Advent Calendar house. Below are a few of the decorations I’ll be working with to create my calendar. As a designer, I love anything creative, and this is a project the whole family can join in on. You can find all my elements at Overstock.com.
As you get a whole a month of happiness in just one calendar, it makes a fabulous gift for family or friends. I enjoy passing on this great tradition, and I love to collect pictures as well. I have a whole Pinterest board devoted to inspirational calendar ideas. If you have small children at home, you can have endless fun by using an Advent Calendar as the key to hints on a holiday scavenger hunt, or to share tiny treats with tiny tots. Expecting house guests? Invite them to participate in your tradition by planning a few days of holiday inspiration. The ideas and excitement are only limited to the 24 days leading up to Christmas… until the next year rolls around. Happy counting!