Advent, a word derived from Latin and translated as “coming,” is the celebration of the 4 Sundays leading up to Christmas. Historians believe a form of Advent has been celebrated since the 4th century.
Christianity.com explains, “Today, the Advent season lasts for four Sundays leading up to Christmas. At that time, the new Christian year begins with the twelve-day celebration of Christmastide, which lasts from Christmas Eve until Epiphany on January 6. (Advent begins on the Sunday that falls between November 27th and December 3rd each year.)”
This year, Advent begins today, November 27, 2016.
Advent Calendars, also based on the concept of eagerly anticipating the “coming,” are different. They begin the countdown on December 1st and generally end on the 24th. The advent calendar, as we know it, dates to the mid-19th century when German protestants made chalk marks on doors, windows or floorboard… or lit candles in anticipation of the coming of Christmas.
In 1908, Gerhard Lang printed the first Advent calendar and the popularity spread throughout Germany until World War II where printing stopped due to shortages of paper. After the war, President Eisenhower is credited with popularizing advent calendars in the United States as he was photographed with his grandchildren opening a Sellmer Advent Calendar.
Advent is a cherished custom of Christmas, building anticipation toward the coming of a day filled with goodness and love, a day set aside to celebrate the best of life, of peace and goodwill toward man, and most especially the birth of a savior.
Easy Homemade Advent Calendars to Make Yourself
We’ve gathered 12 ideas of easy Advent Calendars made from easy to find items, or from materials that may be lying around your home. Add some ingenuity and some thoughtful ideas or small gifts for each day… and Christmas cheer abound in your house this year!
Advent Lineup Calendar
This festive calendar doubles as an eye-catching piece of wall art. Hang two branches in an area where your family regularly gathers, such as a breakfast nook. Clip 25 little numbered bags or packages to the branches for family members to open.
25 Random Acts of Kindness
“I sat down with the kids and made a list of 25 acts of random kindness that we could use to serve others with this month. It was so much fun coming up with really easy, doable ways to daily serve.”
Yesteryear Trinkets Advent Calendar
Hung inside a vintage hotel key cabinet, numbered gift tags are adorned with tiny ornaments made for a homespun Christmas.
Vintage Christmas Advent Calendar
Inspirations for fun activities as well as free vintage printables for cards and envelopes.
Garland Activity Advent Calendar
Involve the whole family, and even holiday guests, with this easy idea, by putting names in each bag and let that day’s family member or guest choose a Christmas activity for the day.
DIY Wood Clock Christmas Advent Calendar
Simple Framed Envelope Advent Calendar
Countdown the days until Christmas with this simple envelope idea that can hold all kinds of surprises. Use a rubber stamp to ink the dates and use embellishments to each envelope to create Christmas magic. Simple pin the envelopes to a framed corkboard.
An Advent ribbon holds messages of goodwill from the extended family. Each scroll is wrapped in ribbon and attached to the decorative background ribbon with a safety pin.
Chalkboard Advent Calendar
An easy and quick idea to pin ornaments and dollar-store finds to twine.
DIY Advent Calendar from a Shoe Organizer
“I found inspiration from Pottery Barn while browsing the holiday section. To me, using a 24 slot over the door foot-gear organizer made the most sense for my budget.”
Wall Mounted Advent Calendar
Boxed Advent Calendar
Putting extra boxes around your home to good use with this idea!