An Advent calendar is a special calendar which is used to count or celebrate the days of Advent in anticipation of Christmas. Some calendars are strictly religious, whereas others are secular in content.
Today, most advent calendars are made for children. Many take the form of a large rectangular card with many “windows”, one of which is opened every day during Advent. In less elaborate calendars, each window opens to reveal an image, a poem, or part of a story such as the Nativity story itself.
The origins of the Advent calendar come from German Lutherans who, at least as early as the beginning of the 19th century, would count down the 24 days of Advent physically. Often this meant simply drawing a chalk line on the door each day, beginning on December 1. Some families had more elaborate means of marking the days, such as lighting a new candle (perhaps the genesis of today’s Advent wreath) or hanging a little religious picture on the wall each day.
At Fragile Earth Stuffed Animals we are currently having a sale on our two remaining styles of eeBoo Advent calendars. Stop by and grab one before they all sell out!
If you are a practicing Christian, how do you celebrate Advent? Do you have an Advent Calendar? Do you move pieces of the creche closer each day, culminating in placing the baby in the manger? Do you light a candle in the Advent wreath that your child made in Sunday School?
I remember the chocolate advent calendars my grandmother used to give us each year. With 6 kids, you sometimes had to wait quite a while for your turn to come around again:) It’s funny, but all I recall about those calendars is the chocolate – nothing about what the doors looked like or what the overall picture was. The chocolate was good, though. Then there was one that we had that was illustrated by Tasha Tudor. There was nothing edible about it – just the pictures. And that calendar I can see as clear as day.