Last year we had a chocolate Advent calendar from Trader’s Joe, and Anna loved it. This year we upgraded to a simple self-made calendar. We debated for a while what to put inside. I made nice activity cards (do a puzzle, watch a movie, etc.), but my husband pointed out to me (wisely, as it turned out) that our daughter will run to the calendar first thing in the morning and it’s not necessarily a good time to fight with her about delaying the activity for later. Besides, as he also pointed out, the only thing that she doesn’t get to do whenever she wants is to eat chocolate. That’s why our calendar only has chocolate inside and some small toys for Sundays. Anna was very excited to discover it in the morning. It took her no time at all to discover #1 and grab it. We didn’t even have time to go downstairs to watch her unwrap it – the photo was taken by my mom.
We went back and forth on introducing Anna to Christian aspects of Christmas, and decided to go ahead with it, since, after all, this is such a big part of our culture. Her new book on the first Advent was this Advent Storybook. Interestingly, it’s a book by a German author that was originally published in Switzerland and later translated into English. It’s a lovely story of a little bear who can’t wait for Christmas to come and every night learns about the journey of another little bear to Bethlehem many years ago. Each short story ends with an exchange between a mother and her son about the religious meaning of the story. I am curious to see how Anna takes this book – I am sure that she will ask very many questions.