We are getting this Christmas season started off mid November, and we are so here for it. So let’s get into it! Advent calendars, we love them and we can’t get enough. In the recent years we've seen the expectation of Advent Calendars' sky rocket from paper doors and cheap chocolate to £300+ super luxe designer creations with mountains of tissue paper and gold embossing (see this years Liberty of London Calendar - you will cry). Although these are beautiful products, I think you just can't beat a homemade advent calendar. Whilst it takes time to think of the right gifts for the right person it is such a joy releaser. Whether it's for your husband, your children or your best friend I can't tell you enough of how much fun you'll have creating it and how much delight they will have receive it - it is the time for giving after all. The Homemade Advent Calendar could be seen as overwhelming, but I'm here to give you all the secrets to make it something joyful and fill you with excitement this advent season. 

Theming your advent calendar could be really helpful for you giving you parameters to work within for example a Cheese Calendar (pretty self explanatory) I know I would personally love this, as would my dad! Or your theme could be more traditional and be filled with ideas such as an advent candle, bauble’s, some mulled spices. The sky really is the limit here, so be as creative as you want! I've included some different idea's below:

The Kids Calendar:

Christmas List Writing Kit, Chocolates, Read parts of the Nativity Story each day, make and send Christmas cards, cut out Snowflakes, Baubles, decorate the tree, prepare reindeer food and mince pies for Father Christmas, Visit Father Christmas 

The Classic Christmas Calendar:

Advent Candle, Candle Holder, Baubles, Handwarmers, Cashmere Socks, Hot chocolate, homemade Bath Salts, Cheese, Crackers, Chutney, Chocolates, Mulled Spices, Mince Pies, Christmas Cards.

The Foodie Calendar:

so for this one you could pick a specific food or drink (as I mentioned previously) cheese, gin or wine. Or you could pick really special items that you tend not to buy for yourself. These could include; balsamic vinegar, truffle oil, sesame oil, cold pressed olive oil, coffee beans, miniature milk foamer, bottle opener, interesting spices, recipe cards, mulled wine spices, champagne for day 24? We think so!

The Giving Calendar:

Collect non perishable food items as well as household and personal items such as deodorants, toothbrush and toothpaste, body spray, hat, scarf, gloves, chocolates, pasta, sauces, canned fruit and vegetables each day and deliver to a shelter before Christmas. Or you could donate to a different charity each day or create a Operation Christmas Child shoe box.

The Acts of Kindness Calendar:

A good idea to add these into the other more classic calendars to encourage and remember what Christmas is really about! Pay for a stranger's coffee, donate clothes to a charity, donate to the local food bank, invite neighbours over for mince pies and mulled wine, leave change in vending machine, write a thoughtful letter to your favourite people, write a gratitude diary for the whole month.

Basically if you can think it, do it. And remember to have fun! That’s what this time of year is all about.

How to Wrap your Advent Calendar: I personally think that brown paper and pretty string looks beautiful with handwriting on each number and placed in a box or hamper, with a card to explain is simple and easy to achieve. Plus did you know that most wrapping paper is not recyclable, no thanks. However, you can be as creative as you like and most shops sell little bags with number's to stick on as appropriate now so that could be a quicker option for you - just make sure the gifts fit inside each bag! Here are some ideas: 



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