Homemade Advent Calendar Ideas
Christmas is coming, Christmas is coming! Anyone else start to get insanely excited for the Christmas lead up around this time? Or as I refer to it: eat all the chocolate season (my personal favorite is this fudge fyi). Alright, let’s be honest every season is eat all the chocolate season for me! One of my other favorites about next month though is opening an advent calendar each day too!
Truth be told, I actually love the lead up to Christmas more than the day itself. I know this sounds horrible, but the excitement, anticipation and celebrations just make me smile. I love the feeling.
Another perk of the Christmas season is having an advent calendar!
I was a typical kid growing up and had one of those cheap chocolate ones every year- I loved it. As I grew up, my advent calendar shifted to fancy ones like coffee samples or loose leaf tea (read about tea benefits here!). I still get some sort of advent calendar every year… and so do my daughters!
When baby bear was old enough (last year at the age of two) I knew I wanted her to experience the awesomeness of an advent calendar. Unfortunately, I couldn’t justify giving her store bought, crappy chocolate every morning before breakfast… no, not even at Christmas season!
After a ton of debate, I ended up buying an awesome Wooden advent calendar (that’s as big as a doll house haha) and rocking it my own way.
Then the task came with what to put in it! Again, store bought sweets weren’t an option so instead, I rocked homemade, immune boosting gummies!
In my mind, giving her a bunch of extra nutrients and a huge gut boost (thanks to the gelatin, elderberries and raw honey all of which I grabbed from Well.ca)
My daughter loved them, and I loved watching her face light up when she opened them up.
Howeeevvveeerrr, this led to a habit of her wanting gummies every morning before breakfast. Sigh. So basically, I make a crap ton of gummy bears all because of a homemade advent calendar. Could be worse, right?
This year however, my husband said I couldn’t do gummies. Mainly because she knows that I make them often and she’d put two and two together and realize it wasn’t Christmas magic but mama bear rocking the set up.
So, I had to come up with a few more ideas and thought I’d share! All of the homemade advent calendar ideas below are simple, healthy alternatives to store bought candy. This year we’ll be doing stickers I think but I wanted to have some back up ideas also in case I do a mix and match.
Advent Calendar Perfection Homemade Gummy Bears
As I mentioned, we make a lot of gummy bears! Below is a video to help explain how to do them but they worked really well in the calendar.
I bought little baggies portioned them out and snuck them into the calendar in the morning before my daughter got up.
This is our go-to recipe but truthfully, I make it up most of the time!
Stickers are our option this year as my toddler is obsessed and my baby thinks they’re funny. Trolls is a big theme in our house right now so I’ll probably go that route!
Ribbon Wrapped Crayons
I thought this was a cute idea! Give one new crayon a day for anyone who has kids who love to draw! My game plan was to do “special” crayons like the glitter ones versus the every day pack.
I make a tasty freezer fudge that my daughter loves (it’s coconut oil, almond butter, cacao, pure maple syrup) and I was going to pop those into baggies and put them in.
Again, super simple but you would have to get up early to put them in the morning of as I don’t think they’d be good the night before.
A great one for anyone with little girls! Little cute hair clips or elastics is a great way to stock up (we lose these sooo often).
I loved this idea, but my husband was less enthused about 25 mini trolls that he’d probably be stepping on haha.
I still think it’s awesome though and think of the collection! So much fun to play with (I may possibly be bringing my own troll obsession back into this from when I was a kid!)
Simple but great for anyone who has an artsy kid. I lost erasers all the time when I was young, so I thought this would be great for anyone with just in school kids.
This is just practical. Yes, 25 pairs of sucks sounds like a nightmare. But we lose socks probably every other day and I am constantly buying new ones!
Have a stash of cute socks wouldn’t be a bad thing. Plus, my toddler totally gets excited by stuff like this!
If your toddler loves stamps why not get a stamp set? They’d love to collect all of them from the month and it would be a great activity to keep them entertained!
We love mini glow sticks in our house! They’re honestly just fun and you could collect and sort the colors to make it a game. We give them to my daughter at bedtime and she “reads” her books with them.
Not everyone will be on board with this one but a bunch of little tattoos for them would be super cute. It’s simple but they’d get to try out a new one (or save them up of course!) often and show it off.
And yes, the old stand by is that the homemade advent calendar could contain money instead of a treat or gift. I’m mostly okay with this, a buck a day to fuel a piggy bank isn’t bad. Buutttt, for me it takes the magic and excitement out of it.
My rule was that if it was money it was to be saved for something specific and then on boxing day you go buy that item. I still think it’s an opt-out though!
So, how about you, did you love advent calendars are a kid? Do you use them now? Homemade or store bought? What’s your favorite item to have inside? Personally, I just love this season of anticipation and love starting traditions like this with the girls. Santa or not, it helps keep magic alive