How to Pull Off a Last-Minute Advent Calendar

GeekMom Holidays
Image credit: CC-BY GlitterandFrills

You make the last sandwich of turkey leftovers, glazed eyes staring at your post-Black Friday credit card bill, and your eyes notice the calendar. It suddenly says December. And the kids really wanted another homemade Advent calendar. Oops.

Don’t worry. You can pull this off.

It’s relatively easy to find countdown calendars with small boxes at craft stores. There are a few on Amazon (here’s a Kurt Adler one and one with a rustic look–poke around and see what you like). If you have a free night, you can also get industrious and make one. Use paper cones like the header image, or make some boxes out of cardstock.

Last year I used my Silhouette Cameo and Wilton favor tins to make one. I didn’t finish until December 9, so if you’re a little starting your countdown, too, I won’t tell.

Image credit: Ruth Suehle
Image credit: Ruth Suehle

Either way, now you have to put something in there. There are so many choices! But what’s great about this method is flexibility. On some days, I put in a Christmas-themed joke. Some days are small pieces of candy. If we have a special event–going to see The Nutcracker or a party–that might be the day’s surprise. And this is where the flexibility comes in. Suddenly you hear about a great Santa event? Drop it in the countdown spot for the night before, and move that day’s piece somewhere else! That means you don’t even have to have it all figured out when you start, as long as you always have the next item in its spot.

For the occasional larger item, we have a gift box that sits near the calendar, and the slip of paper in the small box says to check there.

All that sounds too much work? Lego, Tsum Tsum, Barbie, and Prime delivery are there for you. There’s always next year, when maybe you can even have a cheese calendar instead!

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