Guilt-free advent ideas for kids of all ages

Bearwood rear gardens

English mansion

News flash – Vinny celebrates his third anniversary on WordPress today!


It’s December! Many people start counting down the days to Christmas with an advent calendar. Each day comes with a thought, a scene, and/or a chocolate candy that brings us closer to the real meaning of the holiday.

For Christians, the holiday is a celebration of the birth of Christ. We mark it with many happy traditions that unite our family with yours. We also reach out to people of other faiths at this happy time. We recognize that we are all part of one large family – citizens of the world.

My advent calendar this year comes without chocolate. It is an Internet version of an Edwardian mansion, in England. The images remind me of the popular TV show Downton Abbey – in fact it represents the same time period, the early 1900s. The garden pavilion gets more and more lively the closer we get to Christmas. Every day there’s a new animation or game with music, always a surprise. No matter when I visit my internet mansion, it’s the same time of day or night as it is in my own house. Even the moon looks the same as it does at my place.

This English animation comes to us courtesy of Jacquie Lawson and costs $4 to download (or only $3 a copy if you buy five to send to friends).  There are a lot fewer empty Calories involved than with a traditional calendar filled with wishy-washy milk chocolate… like none! And just tons more fun.  Check out the calendar here!

If you actually do get to go to England, like in real time, there’s much there that’s good to eat. For one blog featuring amazing, historic English cuisine (in keeping with Jacquie’s advent calendar), check British Food: A History.

If you want an advent calendar you can actually hold in your hand, try the bookstore of the Metropolitan Museum of Art. They have fantastically gorgiferous calendars that work their magic without candy.

So, there’s two suggestions for fun and artful Christmas countdowns. Enjoy!

2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. thesimplefoodremedies
    Nov 30, 2013 @ 00:06:32

    A very interesting story. I am liking this!


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