I can't believe it's already close to halfway through October - it will be December before we know it! It's not too long before we start advent countdowns, so I thought I'd share our available advent countdowns and calendars as the very first product feature on Life in the Lane. Advent calendars countdown the days in anticipation of Christmas day, usually beginning on Dec 1. As children, my sister and I were always excited to change the advents each morning prior to Christmas (yes, we had multiple advents lol) and it was exciting to see the magical day getting closer and closer.
Pocket & Drawer Advents
There's a quite few different types of advents available - the two most common types that A Country Lane stocks are pocket and drawer advents. At the start of the month, you place little presents in each drawer/pocket. Each day on the way to Christmas, you or your child get a little gift while counting down!
Some pocket advents, like the reindeer one to the right ($36), have an item attached to a string that gets placed in the corresponding day. You can still use gifts in an advent like this, but it's not necessary.
Some ideas for little gifts...
- Mini toys - Anything small enough to fit. Obviously not if your child is too young for small things! Kids jewellery, stickers, mini cars, Lego, fun erasers, crayons, yo-yos, plastic animal figures - use your imagination and you'll find plenty of things!
- Hair clips/ties, nail polish, lip balm, jewellery etc for your teen girls.
- Lollies/chocolates - Great for all ages. You could also bake your own mini Christmas cookies to include - be sure to wrap them up so they stay fresh. Mini candy canes are perfect for pocket advents.
- $1 scratchies - These started popping up in our pocket advent when my sister and I grew too old for little toys.
- Mini ornaments - Have a mini tree beside your advent calendar and watch as the tree becomes fully decorated over the course of the month. A great way to visualize how close Christmas is.
- Christmas jokes - It's like a bon-bon everyday ;)
- Little notes - Doing something fun on a set day? Let your kids know with notes like "Seeing Christmas lights tonight!" or "Baking with Mum today!". You can also just write something nice like "I love you" and "You're special". Roll them up like a little scroll and tie for an extra special look.
- Vouchers/IOUs - Write a little voucher for each day for your kids to redeem over the holidays. Things like a trip to the movies, being allowed to skip a chore, choosing a special dinner or picking out the movie for the night.
- Remember to have something a little more special for the last day - it helps build excitement for the next day! The soldier drawer advent (top left, $72) has a double sized drawer for the 24th, perfect for an extra special present.
If you have several children, remember to figure out how they'll be doing the advents. Will they do one advent each or will you place one item in each drawer/pocket for each child? My sister and I often just took turns, but sharing was always very natural for us.
Another type popular type of advent is the countdown advent. There's no need to find presents with these - you just turn move the pieces to display the current days till Christmas. These tend to use blocks (nutcrackers on the left, $30 each), hanging tags (Heartwood Creek piece below, $58) or a magnet (retro advent to the right, $34) to display the number of days.
Finally, we have this little guy ($18) who isn't actually an advent - he's a Christmas calendar
that you can use all year (or just December if that's not your thing!).
You can check out every single advent currently available in the gallery below. Click on a thumbnail to see a larger image. All prices are listed in the description. Let us know if you'd like to order something or find out more about an item!
Drawer Advent Soldier - .
Timber Drawer Advent Sleigh - .
Drawer Advent Present - .
Blue Nose Bear Drawer Advent Tree - . Each day during the countdown...
Heartwood Creek "St. Nick's Christmas Countdown" - .
Nutcracker Advent Countdown - each. These are working nutcrackers ...
Timber Santa Advent Countdown - .
Snowman Advent Countdown - .
Grey Stocking Advent Garland - .
Reindeer Pocket Advent - .
Fabric Santa Pocket Advent - . The tree is attached to a peg so you...
Retro Santa Pocket Advent - .
Retro Merry Christmas Magnetic Advent - .
The retro magnetic advent also has matching retro ornaments/signs that...
Fabric Santa/Angel Pocket Advents - each.
Bright Santa Merry Christmas Calendar - was now .