30 November 2015

How to do a Christmas book advent calendar

As a kid I used to love advent calendars. They were always the cheap, sickly sweet chocolate varieties, but oh boy, were they amazing. However amazing I remember them being, I wanted to have something a little different for my daughter. A Christmas book advent calendar. It is so simple - you get 24 books, wrap them, number them, mix them up, and there you go.

I am hoping that this will become a nice little tradition in our family. It seems like such a lovely way to gift books and grow the love of reading from a young age.

You might think that this is just a silly expense. Books can be quite pricey, especially when you want to get 24 of them! However, you only need to buy them once. Then you can use most of them again and again coming Christmases.

Also, they don't need to be expensive. Some of the books we have got as gifts, some I have bought from charity shops and second hand sales. And some I got (...I'll let you in on a little secret) are from the library! Free and we can just get a bunch of new ones next year, so there won't be too much repetition. 

Some of my favourites in our collection are:
That's not my reindeer... which my daughter can't get enough of (it is a touchy-feely book, great for babies and toddlers),
Twelve days of Christmas which is a total classic,  
Snow Bear, - a cute story about how a snow bear finds a new friend, 
Nanny Fox & the Three Little Pigs, an action-packed adventure where a friendly fox saves the chicks, Just Right for Christmas, a thoughtful tale about a piece of cloth and how it becomes Christmas gift for many, 
How the Grinch Stole Christmas! another great classic,
Santa's Sleigh is on its Way to London, which is a really cute story of Santa in London - love this for all Londonites, 
and of course, Mog is such a classic, and in 2015 the new top Christmas book was Mog's Christmas Calamity! It's unfortunately a bit difficult to find online but Mog's Christmas is a great alternative too. 

Regarding the books you see in the above picture, I wasn't too strict about the books I chose. Some are Christmas related, some are sort of about winter and snow (like snow bears and penguins...) so will be appropriate even past December.  Additionally, if you are wondering why some of the books in the picture have strange titles, they are in Finnish.  We have books in both languages as we raise our daughter bilingually.

What are you doing for an advent calendar? Books, chocolates, toys, or traditional paper?


  1. Lovely idea!! We are doing crafty calendar this year... 1 craft a day for 24 days :) It is a bit more like craft marathon at the moment, we are behind with one of the crafts but kids are generally keeping up ;)

    1. That sounds like such a fab idea! I am not amazingly crafty but that might be something to try next year :) other nice ideas I have heard of are doing an activity calendar and doing book chapters, or little books in the same series for the calendar.

  2. This is a great advent calendar idea. We've already got our kids chocolate calendars, but having seen your post I'm now thinking that maybe in addition to chocolate we could also do the book one... the only problem is that our children are 5 and 8, a boy and a girl, so that would probably mean getting 48 books :0

    1. Oh yes do the book one! I think you could get away with just 24 books - they are fairly close in age so might enjoy similar books. Maybe. Or you could do it so they get each 12 books so open on alternate nights?


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