Homemade Advent Calendar

kids advent calendar

Today is the first day of December and that means the first day to open number 1 on the advent calendar. We’ve done many different advent calendars over the years – from chocolate store bought ones, wooden box ones, fabric made advents and even last years wrapping up 24 Christmas books advent (details on that one here). Life has been so busy lately that unfortunately it was on the last day of November that I decided to make a new advent calendar for us to use this year.

simple advent calendar

This is a great advent calendar as you can pretty much make is with stuff you have around the house (I did) and it’s easy enough that the kids can help make it too. The other great thing about it is that you can fit more than one treat or surprise inside which is a great if you have more than one child. My kids would always argue about who’s turn it was as they could only ever fit one inside which was a total nightmare. Little ones aren’t the best at waiting their turn!

bowl advent calendar

Start with an old stretched canvas on a frame, a large sized foamcore or a big piece of wood would also work. To save the frame from getting wrecked and to help decorate I covered it with some candy stripe wrapping paper left over from last year (KikkiK). Then using craft glue I glued 24 plastic bowls (paper bowls would have worked better but I had these in the cupboard at home) to the canvas in rows of 4.

making an advent calendar

We put books and DVD’s on top of the bowls and left it overnight to dry to make sure they wouldn’t fall off when the surprises were put inside.

easy advent calendar

Using the bowl as a template we traced around the top of the bowl to make neat circles onto pretty wrapping paper 24 times and then cut them out.

advent calendar treats

Fill the bowls with treats or toys, little notes or anything you fancy. We have used treats this year as we’ve had a few years without them in advent calendars. I’ll let you know if we decide not to do this again next year! I love the fact that it was so easy to fit 4 of everything in there. There might still be the argument of who’s turn it is to open the bowl but there is something in there for all of them.

merry christmas sign

We cut out 14 rectangles the same size and then freehand just using scissors we cut out the letters to spell “Merry Christmas”. Then just used a UHU glue stick to stick the letters on. Then we outlined them with a thick black texta which made it pop and made it easier to read.

smash bowl advent

With the cut out circles of wrapping paper we wrote numbers 1 to 24 on each circle and then using a glue stick again rubbed some around the top of the bowl to stick the circles of paper onto the top of the filled bowl. We layed the calendar flat overnight to dry the glue so that they didn’t open with the weight of the treats when it is placed upright.

fun homemade advent calendar

Tada!! All done and it worked! Sorry it’s  a bit late for you to make one as well unless you’re happy to miss a day. Actually there are a few hours left in the day to make something similar if you want to try.

punching open the homemade advent calendar

All that is left to do now is get the kids to punch out (gently) the next 24 days and countdown till Christmas.

I’d love to hear from you if you end up making one or perhaps you’d like to pin the idea to Pinterest for next year!

The countdown has begun.

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