I grew up with a wonderful advent calendar that allowed me to open a very small gift each day of December leading up to Christmas day. This special tradition in my family was one that I really wanted to be sure and pass along to my children. I now have a lovely wooden advent calendar with small doors for my son to open to find his special gift for the day. The challenge, however, is finding 24 inexpensive (I like to spend $1 or less) and small gifts that will actually fit into the advent calendar doors. If you have an advent calendar for your children, or want to start using them, try using these 24 great advent calendar gift ideas and find out where to get them.
Erasers. You can find multi packs of cute erasers at dollar stores or find unique individual erasers at your child’s school book fair.
Silly Bands. Buy a pack in your kids favorite shapes (you can find these anywhere!) and separate them out into several day’s gifts, or save some for stocking stuffers.
Earrings. If your daughter has her ears pierced look for special deals at mall jewelry stores. You can often find simple earrings on sale for about a $1.
Candy. Special candies like chocolate Christmas trees are less than a buck but will be very appreciated.
Money. Choose unique money such as golden dollars or a $2 bill for this advent calendar item.
Stickers. Stickers are a super cheap way to fill your child’s advent calendar. Seasonal stickers are always fun.
Pens and Pencils. Seasonal pens and pencils, or any fun writing utensils make great items for an advent calendar.
Certificates. Put in a certificate for ice cream after school one day or a trip to the mall for Christmas shopping with friends.
Matchbox Cars. Tiny matchbox or hot wheels cars fit perfectly into almost all advent calendars and can easily be found for $1 or less.
Bath Beads. Your little girl will love finding these fun bath items in her advent calendar door.
Socks. Fun socks such as those with movie characters or crazy colors and patterns stuff easily into an advent calendar.
Silly Putty. This classic stretchy toy is a great little toy that will fit perfectly in a small space.
Rubber Stamps. Small rubber stamps featuring fun pictures are a great addition to advent calendars for kids of a variety of ages.
Temporary Tattoos. Look for temporary tattoos of your child’s favorite characters. These wash-off items can be separated out into several day’s worth of gifts.
Kids Meal Toys. If you ever choose the kids meal when you are eating out, save the toys! They come in handy as a great advent calendar stuffers.
Dinner Out Coupon. Give your child a coupon to eat at his favorite restaurant. This is an expense you would be incurring anyway so it won’t break the bank.
Bouncy Balls. Children love playing with little bouncy balls and these can easily be found in those darned impulse machines you see at many stores and restaurants for just $.50.
Lip Balm. Lip balm is a great, inexpensive item to add to your advent calendar gifts.
Body Splash or Lotion. Small trial-sized items, or single use facial mask packets, easily fit into an advent calendar door and can be found at drug stores for around $1.
Mints. Your child will love having his own stash of mints for her purse or to keep in the car for post-meal refreshment.
Hair Accessories. Flowers, ribbons, and hair bands of all kinds make great small advent calendar gifts.
Mini Notepad. Tiny notepads can be found at discount stores and are great for keeping in a child’s back pack or in the car.
Christmas Ornament. Inexpensive Christmas ornaments are a perfect item to stash in a child’s advent calendar.
Bookmark. Check your local discount stores, or just print your own from your computer using cardstock, to find special, personable bookmarks to put in your child’s advent calendar.
And there you have it! Twenty-four ideas to put in your advent calendar. Use these small and inexpensive ideas to fill your child’s advent calendar for a special treat each day leading up to Christmas day.