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Chez Larsson

The Advent Calendar

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Wille’s 17. He doesn’t really need or expect an advent calendar this year. I don’t care because he’s getting one anyway. I’m not giving away what’s inside but here’s a clue, it’s all flat this year. The calendar consists of 24 (we celebrate Christmas on Christmas Eve over here) white numbered envelopes in an old refrigerator ware container and I’ve included a letter opener for easy morning openings.



I printed the numbers 0-9 in Impact on to three sheets of paper and taped them on the reverse on a window.



Then I used scrap pieces of craft paper, gift wrap etc and traced the numbers on to the backs of the paper pieces.




Then I sat in front of the TV one night an cut them all out…



… and used a glue stick to attach them to each envelope.




Ps. Happy Thanksgiving to all you Americans!


  • julia says:

    If I didn’t already have a great mom I’d opt for you! Great idea!

  • Hxx says:

    I’m with Julia! But please adopt me (even if I am a couple of years older than you!!). Fantastic idea x

  • corinne says:

    tu es incroyable ! tu as toujours de superbes idees 🙂 MERCI !! et bonne journee !

  • Monica says:

    What a lovely, I mean cool idea.

  • Maureen says:

    Liking this idea! I am getting ready to make my advent calendar (for 2 adults, ha). I’m thinking of making my own little envelopes out of fun paper and putting them all on a board. We’ll see how far I get before my hands start hurting!

  • Karin says:

    tuff idé! jag måste fråga, var kommer pappret som du använde på siffran 2 ifrån? hur fint som helst!!

  • Anette says:

    What a great idea! Looks neat and nice and very suitable for “older” children. I did sew several (24) mini stockings two years ago for my little girls now, 3,5 yo and almost 6yo. Everyday there is a laminated picture on what is happening that day. (pictures because they could not read when I started, the oldest can now read but pictures will stay). I mix events/happenings with small gifts, wanted it to be more of “getting into the Christmas spirit ” kind of thing then lots of little gifts x 2. Now we bake, cook, craft and go speciall places. Lots of work for mamma but lots of fun for little kids. Can see myself going your way in a few years time. Looking forward to see what is inside the envelopes!
    Chers! Anette 🙂

  • Petra from NL says:

    Anette, that sounds like a great idea!

  • Petra from NL says:

    Ingenious idea! Was Wille around when you did the cutting?

  • querencia says:

    The calender itself is cute but the sentiment behind it stopped me in my tracks. Happy Holiday Season to you and all your family.

  • Maja says:

    Great Idea! I have got scraps from pretty scrapbook paper and a silhouette! Tschakka!

  • elisa says:

    it’s so lovely, you are sweet to him. i’m hoping we can leave the land of playmobil advent very soon! i’d like to make my own. we did use baby socks as little stockings one year, and filled them with gifts. oops, was it expensive!! x

  • Britta says:

    Jag blir verkligen imponerad över hur du kommer på 24 platta saker att stoppa i kuverten! Idén är helt strålande, snygg också!

  • Det kommer ur ett set japanska papper som jag köpte på Japanska Magasinet för säkert 10 år sen. 1:an och flera av de andra är från samma set.

  • He wasn’t but the calendar’s been sitting ready on my desk since I made it and so far he hasn’t noticed it :).

  • Några är “samma lika” men ändå inte riktigt 🙂

  • Jo says:

    Fabulous idea Benita..and a great way to use up all those scraps of card, gift wrap and so on that I always save beliveing that some day they’ll come in handy for something. ;o)
    I must confess though that I cannot understand for the life of me how the sentiment behind an advent calendar could stop someone in their tracks ??
    Am I missing something ??
    Jo xx

  • Malin says:

    Enkelt och snyggt – och fullt görbart. Pyssel när det är som bäst. 🙂

  • Cristina says:

    Amazing!!!! Love the patterns you’ve choose. Beautifull project!

  • Sara says:

    Love it, MG. I’m very thankful for your blog… You’re an inspiration!!

  • Judy from the USA says:

    Thank you for your Thanksgiving greetings. It is my favorite holiday since it is about family and good food and being together.
    I love your Advent calendar and I think you’re so right to still make one for Wille. My Willem is 18 and we still do things for him and his sister that we did when they were little. I think they’d miss it if we didn’t, even though they’re so grown up and sophisticated now!

  • Giulia says:

    Love the colours – bright and cheery. Looking forward to the surprises inside 😉

  • Goneril says:

    What a sweet mama you are! And thank you for the Thanksgiving greeting!

  • Zosia says:

    I am sure that Wille will be very happy, seventeen or not. I am making an advent calendar too, just white paper lunch bags with red paper snowflakes glued on top with numbers written on the snowflakes. I asked two of our younger kids to make the snowflakes. I just have to prepare the contents for the bags now when they are not around.

  • G.Sims says:

    I don’t care was quite funny. I am making one too and found an idea on but instead of tiny stockings (where would I find so many) I like your beautiful paper idea.

  • Nancy says:

    I have been asking my kids what traditions they love about Christmas in an effort to pare down the to-do list to what is most important for our family. Of course, being school aged kids, they said the presents were the most important, but advent calendars was up there too. My eldest would start it today if he could!
    Sometimes we carry on traditions because they are more important to us than the recipients, but it is all part of recognizing what makes the holidays special to us; even though it is sometimes a reminder that a sweet stage of life, childhood, is passing.
    I love your updated advent calendar, and I hope that he enjoys it as much as you have enjoyed putting it together. Can’t wait to see what you put inside.

  • RebeccaNYC says:

    Advent is my favorite time of year! As a child I loved the advent calendar. Ours was always the kind that was a printed picture of the nativity and you opened a window everyday to reveal a picture, a dove, a moses basket, something related to a bible story. We would take turns opening the windows, lighting the advent candles and reading the bible story (when we were old enough). No gifts were involved. This sounds so austere to me now (my father is a pastor and we were a very religious family), but I loved it as a child. I do not have children of my own but I still light the advent candles and love to remember those times.
    I really like your advent calendar, so festive and pretty… Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, and I just might be copying you!

  • New England Girl says:

    What a great idea! I’ll use it in the future. This year for Advent I’ll put together a 1000 piece puzzle with a Christmas-y scene. Once it’s assembled, I break it into 24 sections, then I break each section down and those pieces along with a couple of pieces of chocolate make that day’s Advent gift. It’s a tremendous amount of work (I really should consider that when I come up with these ideas) but the kids really enjoy it. Last year’s puzzle was only 500 pieces. Not sure how long it will take me to assemble 1000 pieces. 🙁
    Thank you for the Thanksgiving greetings. The turkey is roasting and it smells delicious!

  • Kari says:

    Tak for the Happy Thanksgiving–it is my favorite holiday: amazing and thanks and chance to get your breath before the Christmas/holiday season–what more could you want? I love the advent–seems appropriate for you big boy!

  • jja says:

    great idea!
    Benita I LOVE this! You are such a great mom 🙂

  • The simplicity of your ideas never cease to amaze me! I *love* this idea! …Now to figure out what to put inside!!! 🙂

  • Lisa says:

    Brilliant! My kids are on the cusp of only wanting “flat” gifts! Lol! For now, they still expect a chocolate behind the advent calendar door. Happy Advent 1st!

  • Ali says:

    Great idea! As Willie opens the envelopes please give us a peek inside them! I’m curious if they are sweet notes or gift cards or fun things to do together!
    ~ Ali

  • Anya SAS says:

    I really like this “gown up” version of advent. Can’t wait to see what is inside those envelopes, I hope you will keep us updated!
    I shared your tutorial as a part of Handmade Holidays project ( Hope it’s OK with you!

  • zoe says:

    Willie has a great mum – I hope he knows it! This is a mature way of marking the days of Advent and although it may not seem like a lot of effort for you (all in a day’s work for Benita?!), it’s really thoughful and wonderful!
    Enjoy the season

  • patty says:

    Hi Benita,
    I love your blog, followed for a while and then lost your link. Just found you again and will be doing this wonderful idea for my kids next year!
    My daughter is 22 but loves that I still continue to do small gifts at Valentines Day and Easter and this will continue a tradition. Thanks

  • RC says:

    Jo, I think the reference was to the amount of time and care Benita is putting into making an advent calendar for her young adult son.
    I always have done Christmas stockings and Easter baskets for my two sons. They are in their late 20s now and a couple years ago I figured the stockings were “silly” and didn’t do them. I don’t put gifts of any value in them, they are filled with silly small things like socks, chapstick, toothbrush, sweets, pens, etc. Well, the year there was NO STOCKING I heard a chorus of complaints and was stunned to learn that the fun of opening their stockings and chuckling over what I put in was their “favorite part” of Christmas!
    I think these little traditions are what make our holidays special and bind us as families. So, yes, the energy that went into making your advent calendar is a show of love and it’s striking and heartwarming.