Monday, December 1, 2008


Every year I pull out the advent calendar and I wish it was cuter.
I shouldn't have used that color.
I wish I had put more quilting on there.
I messed up on that one part.
I used to think this was the cutest thing EVER.
There are so many fun new colors and prints that I would love to experiment with and make something new. I mentioned this to my kids this year and they both said,
"NO! We like THIS one."
It made me ponder if my mom was wishing in 1980 for something a bit more chic and trendy then her 1960's burlap, felt and glitter advent calendar that she made for us at her "Relief Society" Church gathering.
We loved that advent calendar. It was lost somewhere in the shuffle of moving after she passed away. I never seemed to mind the glitter that was peeling off the glued numbers or the rooftop of the manger.
As a teenager, I didn't care if the neighbors had a newer version. All I cared about was waking up in the morning to see what treasure my mom had hid in that 2" pocket of mystery. Every year there would be the same nickel ornament in each pocket to place on the felt tree. And then Mom always tucked a little something extra into every nook and cranny of that pocket: gum, quarters, earrings, chocolates, pez candy.
So even with the new stain that I'm noticing this year on the calendar, I will fill each pocket with an ornament and/or treat. I will remember the little baby hands that pulled on the star button. I will see the big, clumsy fingers of my teenage son trying to get to the bottom of the stocking for that piece of gum.
I will appreciate the tradition that my mom started so long ago and one that I have enjoyed carrying on with my own family.......regardless of the colors, techniques or imperfections of a now treasured family heirloom.
We even make room for Yoda and Darth Vader.

Nothing says Christmas like....heavy breathing.


  1. This was such a sweet post, it almost brought me to tears, probably as my kids are still small, 3 years and a two month old. I hope to share similar Christmas traditions that have been passed down to me from my family, and I was especially moved as my baby is already almost three months old, they grow in a blink! And now you have me wanting to make my own advent calendar!! Like I need another project lol. And by the way, I love your calendar, it's very cute...have a pattern anywhere? :)

  2. what a sweet tradition and such a cute homemade advent. i remember that we had one of those cardboard fireplaces. & flannel stockings that my Mom made.

  3. I love Advent Calendars! I inherited my mom's our first Christmas in our new home. The pockets are just big enough for two hershey kisses, so that's what goes in ours. My sister was jealous that I was given my mom's, so this year I made her one too. I love this time of year!

  4. I know exactly what you mean. Well, as far as wanting something a little cuter and the kids saying NO! I am working on our advent calendar as we speak. I am SO far behind already! I love your little calendar. And just think that your kids will have these cherished memories. Have a good day!

  5. I love advent calendars...i think we have four...too many?

  6. Yes, a very sweet post. Although the last line was PURE DES! :D My kids are the same way!! Don't change a thing, gotta put that up, don't throw that out! It is their childhood and their memories we would be messing with. It all means something to them. Ya think they don't notice but...

  7. I have an advent calendar that sits in the drawer now that the kids are adults. Maybe one day we will have grandchildren to use it.

  8. Des, you put a tear in my eye - how thoughtful of your mother and how fortunate for your kids to have the tradition - your mom would be so proud! Cheers!

  9. I made the same advent calendar for my son 21 years ago. I can't remember where the pattern came from. Mine is a bit crooked. Billy is touring the country with his band and I didn't get it out this year. I think I will go digging in the cupboard, hang it up, and maybe fill it with chocolate! Thanks for the memory.

  10. Darling stuff. We watched star wars on tv this weekend. My kids ar geeks.