Although I get pretty excited about fall, my eyes are on the prize, which for me is Thanksgiving and Christmas. I love all of the build up to the holiday season and nothing is more perfect for highlighting that build up than an advent calendar. We own FOUR advent calendars, which is a touch crazy, but my mom bought one for each of the kids, and, well, we have two others.
I was going to say that I can’t really explain why other than we love them, except that I can. It’s the presents. It’s also the ceremony of it, the fact that my kids are thrilled to get to open up another door on their calendars and see what’s inside. My mom fills the calendars she bought for the kids every year with coins and candy and a small ornament every day (that goes on a small tree that she also got them.) This year we’re all sharing one of our own calendars in addition to the ones my mom does. We’ll alternate days and in addition to small gifts, we’re also including tickets to the Christmas Train, and Elf, the musical on two of the days.
Every year I love rounding up my favorite advent calendars, and while I know it’s still early many of these will sell out so we want you to get a jump on them. (This post contains affiliate links! Thanks for your support of our site.)
Before you order, make sure you’re shopping through Ebates! You’ll thank yourself in January when that Big Fat Check arrives!
Calendars for Kids
Melissa and Doug Advent Calendar – I love this sweet wooden calendar and the time investment is minimal. Simply add one ornament to the tree for each day leading up to Christmas. Unlike some of the other kid-friendly calendars, this one can be used year after year.
Crayola Countdown to Christmas Advent Calendar – There’s a trend in calendars for kids toward consumable items and I kind of love that. Instead of 24 toys or tiny pieces, kids can create with the coloring sheets and craft projects in this calendar and then be done with it.
PlayDoh Advent Calendar – Again with the consumables. Tell me you don’t have a cabinet full of dried out and mixed up PlayDoh and I’ll be very jealous. This would come in handy around here.
Lego City Advent Calendar – The LEGO Advent calendars are very popular and will sell out. There is also a Friends and Star Wars edition available. Be warned, they don’t come with instructions.
Disney Tsum Tsum Advent Calendar – Remember what I said about not wanting a bunch of new toys lying around? I take it back. I want this. I really, really want this. For the kids, of course.
Playmobil Christmas on the Farm Advent Calendar – Come ON, how cute is this. Someone buy this because I absolutely can not have another Advent calendar in this house. There are a ton of Playmobil calendar options, but I love this farm version.
Snowman Calendar – Well this little guy is too cute, and requires nothing more than tucking a small trinket into the numbered pockets. You can start with a candy cane and move it daily in lieu or giving out treats every day.
Gilt Galvanized Advent Calendar – I just adore this calendar and rightfully so, because it costs a fortune. But look how pretty!
Felt Stocking Advent Calendar – Of course World Market makes the sweetest little felt stockings calendar. Of course they do.
Wood House Advent Calendar – Moving away from the insanity of the Pottery Barn calendars, Target always has several calendar options in store once the Halloween items move out. Keep your eyes open because they get better and better every year.
Beauty Advent Calendars
BareMinerals Countdown to Gorgeous – This one is by far my favorite. Gimme.
Benefit Girl O’Clock Rockin Minis Set – Benefit was one of the first to make a beauty advent calendar and I’m disappointed to see they’ve moved from 24 days to 12 days, but this is still on my wish list.
ASOS Beauty Calendar – This calendar contains recognizable beauty favorites from brands like Batiste, Burt’s Bees & Philosphy.
L’Occitane Advent Calendar – This is a brand that I never ever buy for myself, but imagine the stocking stuffers you would find in this bad boy.
I was disappointed to see that Starbucks doesn’t have their calendar up for this year. They usually have something super cute and it always contains a Starbucks gift card. Hopefully it’s out soon. Of course there’s always the $1 option at Trader Joe’s, too! Are you an advent calendar person? Let us know where you like to find yours!
Stay tuned for our post on what to fill your calendar with, including some really fun DIY options.
We have this ridiculous Avon snowman, tree advent thing with motion detection. You put in ornament on the tree leading up to Christmas and when you walk by he scares the &$%# out of you to announce how many days. We end up just turning him off and adding the ornaments, so this year I’d like to do something nicer and less annoying and send this snowman to the garage sale pile. Thanks for the ideas.