When my little brother was ten, he was diagnosed with what they thought was colitis.
Later, we found out it was, in fact, Crohn’s. Either way, his symptoms and gastrointestinal issues meant he had to eliminate a number of foods from his diet. Two triggers that were dairy and gluten. Now if this were to happen to me today, there’s no doubt I would find it rough. But a more holistic diet and fewer sweets may lead to less baby weight around my midsection. Not all bad.
For my kid brother, it was a bit of a blow.
This meant no Halloween candy after trick-or-treating, no chocolate advent calendars, no cake at friends’ birthdays and so much more. Our family soon stocked up on gluten-free options for celebrations and almond milk aplenty. When my little bro’s birthday rolled around that November, I decided my gift to him would be an advent calendar without candy! Here is how I made his advent calendar without chocolate.
Really Simple Non-Candy Advent Calendar
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I went to the dollar store and purchased a poster board, some ribbon and wrapping paper. Then, I purchased Harry Potter lego, stickers, and some other dollar store fillers. I opened everything and created 24 separate little packages. Day 1 was the actual Harry Potter character. I divvied the rest up based on what made the most sense. Then, I measured out 24 boxes and numbered them, punctured two holes at the top of each box. Then, I wrapped each of the 24 parcels and tied them to their respective day. It cost a bit of money, but it was that easy! And, it made for something really special.
What I’m Doing for Advent Calendars Without Candy This Year
Disclaimer: I received two advent calendars to facilitate this post. All opinions expressed are my own.
I will be honest and say, Halloween took it out of me. Not only did we DIY all of our décor, I also hand made my kids’ costumes. Sure, I purchased items from Value Village to make my kids into Nick Wilde and Officer Hopps of Zootopia. But, I also had to make my own patterns and hand-sew portions of both costumes. I’m tired. And our house is already overrun with enough candy to last us a couple of months. So, I decided on Playmobil advent calendars for both kids. We absolutely love Playmobil in our household. Their figures and play-scenes act as incredible prompts for my children’s imaginative play. We’ve used them for extension activities for kids books, to create an indoor Safari, and so much more.
I let my kids choose their calendars. My daughter selected this one. And my son, the NHL hockey advent calendar. Like a chocolate advent calendar, these ones have 24 doors. Each day yields a person, an accessory, or furniture. They are also equipt with their own cardboard play scenes. Check out the video below to see how cool my son’s Day 1 was!
If you have younger kids and are worried about small pieces, we introduced Playmobil 123 to our daughter on her first birthday and have continued to have play value for the past three years. To get your own Playmobil calendar, be sure to enter my giveaway below <3 If you’d prefer to make your own, I got you covered!
DIY Advent Calendar Ideas for Kids
DIY Scratch-off Advent Calendar Ornaments // Danya Banya
Christmas Book Advent Calendar // Living Loving Laughing Together
25 Days of Christmas STEM Countdown // Little Bins for Little Hands
DIY Box Advent Calendar (with printable) // Powerful Mothering
Toilet Paper Roll Advent Calendar // Danya Banya
Christmas Countdown Printable // Sunny Happy Day
DIY Christmas Tree Countdown // Playground Park Bench
Christmas Jokes for a Christmas Countdown // Little Bins for Little Hands
Christmas Week Activity Count Down // Sunny Day Family
Christmas Countdown Surprises // Teach Me Mommy
Choose from these Toddler Advent Activities // Rainy Day Mum
LEGO Advent 25 Days of Christmas // Little Bins for Little Hands
Random Acts of Kindness Christmas Countdown // Every Star is Different