My countdown to this Christmas started on 26th December 2014; it’s my favourite time of year! I keep an app on my phone all year that counts down the number of sleeps until Christmas is back once again.
When it gets to the 1st of December, it’s traditional in the UK to use an advent calendar to count down the days up to and including Christmas Eve on the 24th. As a child, I was lucky enough to have a calendar with little pockets that my mum would place a chocolate and a little present in; these varied from pencils to hair bands.
We’ll be using my calendar at EuroTalk this year, to reveal a different Christmas word, in a different language, each day. You can countdown with us by following us on Twitter or liking us on Facebook – head on over now to find out what today’s word is, and see if you can pronounce it better than Ioana 😉
The idea of advent calendars originated from Germany, but soon spread across Europe and North America. Advent starts four Sundays before Christmas each year. People used to light a candle and allow it to burn down slightly more each day, representing how long there was until Christmas. Advent then moved onto boards with dates, and each day a different picture would be pinned onto the board. The first printed advent calendar dates back to the early 20th century, but during World War 2 production was stopped, in order to save cardboard and paper.
Advent calendars have become part of our annual Christmas celebrations. Today you can buy a standard calendar, which allows you to open little numbered doors and behind each one find either a picture or a chocolate. Alternatively you can buy ones with a gift behind each window; last year Harrods sold one shaped like a house that contained a different porcelain ornament for each day (we’re not sure how many they sold, though, as it cost £9,600…).
Do you have an advent calendar at home? What did you get for day 1?