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Growing up, my brother and I were given Advent calendars every year. They were paper boxes printed to look like a house, and when you opened the little numbered doors and windows, there were CHOCOLATES INSIDE OF ALL TWENTY-FIVE. A daily piece of candy to celebrate the holiday season, leading to a day where we all received presents… seriously… it was a dream come true.

When I first thought about doing my own version of this tradition, my plan was to make little parcels that could be opened each day, containing a gift or treat. But, we’re actively trying to purge items from our abode, and we already delight in enough sweets that I didn’t need to add a daily treat to our strict regimen; instead, I went with words. They can be the hardest to come up with, but the most meaningful, and you can customize them for the receiver. Since this one was for our house, I selected memories from our adventures over the previous year. There are so many options for your own home or gifts though: funny, sappy, spiritual, complimentary, or even I dare say, mischievous.

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Processed with VSCOcam with t1 presetThis garland calendar celebrates the season, costs the maker zero dollars, and brings 25 days of joy. All you need for this project are scraps of paper, a string/ribbon/rope, a writing utensil, and a small bit of tape. For the one pictured, I found an old notebook, and pulled out the staples so I could lay the pages flat. I then used my pinking shears (bought for use on paper) to cut out twelve different shapes that had been folded in half, resulting in 24 individual sections. Next I used to cover of the notebook for a bolder patterned Christmas Day tab, and had enough leftover to swap one tab to highlight the receiver’s birthdate.

Make yours today for: Free. Fun. Cheerful. Giving. Holiday. Joy.

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