way back in 2008 i found a Playmobil Advent calendar at a garage sale for just a dollar. the set was nearly complete and in really good condition. Mabel was not quite two, and there were plenty of small pieces, but she was a careful two year old and we kept the calendar on top of the dresser, so one of the tall people had to get in down for her.
fast-forward five years and this has become one of our treasured Advent traditions. each morning the children try and remember whose turn it is to open up one of the boxes and find out just what’s hidden inside. our set portrays a town square with carolers out. each person carries a colorful St Martin’s lantern. the town has a creche with animals and St Nicolas and his donkey even makes an appearance!
the calendar helps up keep track of just how much longer we have to wait for the baby to be born! anticipation and excitement build will every tiny package opened. it also helps us keep Christmas buying simple. when you have been opening presents and adding toys to your playset all month long, there isn’t a big let down on Christmas–that (sometimes) overwhelming desire has been spread out over many days. it frees up the Christmas season to be about so much more than gifts.