If you haven’t picked up an Advent calendar yet, expect your options to be limited and be ready to go the DIY route.
For many holiday calendars, December 1 is the first day to count the days of Advent, the religious days leading up to Christmas Eve.
Festive calendars have traditionally offered simple treats like chocolate, but in recent years more refined dishes have been hidden behind paper flaps, from perfume to alcohol, in order to woo holiday shoppers. There are also beauty, toy, and pet calendars.
Discount grocer Aldi kicked off its Advent calendar season on November 3 with its second National Advent Calendar Day and sold a variety of options including wine, beer, cheese, candies, candles and more.
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In many Aldi stores, the calendars sold out quickly and some calendars were selling on eBay on Wednesday at double, triple and quadruple the store prices.
Costco released its 2021 Wine and Beer Advent Calendars in September, which included a wine calendar sold at $ 99.99 and the beer calendar at $ 59.99. Prices and availability vary by location.
This year, many major retailers sold the Cheese Calendar which sees itself as the original Advent calendar.
The “Ilchester So Wrong It’s Nom Cheese Advent Calendar” sold for $ 20 in stores nationwide, including Sam’s Club, Target, Supervalu, Sprouts, Schnucks, Meijer, Jewel, Lidl and Publix.
What is the Advent season?
Advent is the four week period leading up to Christmas. This year, it will take place from November 28 to Friday December 24.
The tradition of Advent calendars began in the 1800s, according to Mental Floss. German Protestants would have decorated their doors with chalk marks or lighted candles to count each day before Christmas.
Advent calendars as we know them today were invented by Gerhard Lang in the early 1900s. When Lang was a child, his mother gave him 24 cookies and ate one a day. This served as the inspiration for him to create the first printed and commercial Advent calendar in 1908, according to the German Christmas Museum.
Do you start an Advent calendar at 1 or 24?
According to Calendar.com, there are two schools of thought on how to start an Advent calendar.
“The first is that you would start with the highest number and the countdown. In other words, you would count backwards from 24 to 1, ”notes the Calendar.com blog. “The second is that the schedule would start with one and progress to the higher number.”
In 2016, Bustle.com explained how to properly open an Advent calendar.
“Using the historical context, it seems the correct way to work on an Advent calendar begins with the box labeled ‘one’. The purpose of the calendar is not to count backwards, but rather to count the days before Christmas, ”Bustle wrote.
Advent calendars sold out? You can make a homemade one
Clara Gorski of Mosinee, Wisconsin uses an Advent calendar her sister made in the early 1960s, she told Stevens Point Journal, which is part of the USA TODAY Network. When turned over, each square of the calendar reveals a person, animal or object involved in the Nativity scene, from the baby Jesus to Mary, Joseph and the three wise men.
Diana Goen, member of The Button Buds of Northeastern Wisconsin, created a calendar with the group using buttons to count days. Calendars eventually evolved into bingo cards. Goen said she started using the cards with her granddaughter and nieces and nephews. They can win prizes throughout the season, she said.
Calendars can also be tailored to the user’s interests and also include cards for other holidays, Gorski said. From dogs and treats to angels and snowmen, there’s a theme for every member of the family.
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Contribution: Emma Stein, Detroit Free Press; Melissa Siegler, Stevens Point Journal
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