Advent calendars have come a long way since we were kids–I remember our choices were limited to chocolate (and not the good kind) and windows that opened to reveal a different Christmas illustration every day. I loved those in particular, but now, we have countless choices when it comes to buying an advent calendar to help us count down to Christmas. I was on CTV Noon and CTV Ottawa Morning Live showing viewers the best advent calendars to give this year.
Here are my suggestions for advent calendars guaranteed to make everyone smile:
For the sweet tooth:
This year, Purdy's has come out with not one but two advent calendars for the chocolate lover! The starry night advent calendar contains pretty drawers you pull open every day to reveal a tasty, festive, wrapped in foil milk or while chocolate piece; a dark chocolate foiled bell, or a foiled chocolate salted caramel. If you flip each drawer while you're counting down, you'll reveal a beautiful Christmas illustration at the end. This one sells for $25 and can be found at Purdy's stores in Ottawa, like in Bayshore Shopping Centre and Rideau Centre.
Purdy's is also selling their snow globe advent calendar, which looks more like a traditional advent calendar, filled with festive mini salted caramels or white or milk chocolate pieces. This one is available for $20.
Canadian master chocolatier, Chocolats Favours, has a lovely advent calendar that i filled with four high quality chocolates per day. Not only do you get four pieces of chocolate a day, which is perfect to share with the entire family, each day, you get to discover a new chocolate flavour! The calendar itself is beautiful, with a vintage holiday feel. You can pick yours up at any Chocolats Favours store for $34.99.
I love Laura Secord for their delicious flavour of ice cream but they also sell delicious chocolate, too. The nice thing about their cute advent calendar is that it's peanut free–so you can feel safe and confident when gifting it to a child with allergies. You can buy Laura Secord advent calendar for $24.99 at Bayshore Shopping Centre or St. Laurent Shopping Centre.
Count down the days to Christmas with the Godiva advent calendar, featuring an assortment of Christmas chocolates in milk, dark and white, in shapes of winter penguins, jolly Santa's, snowmen, and raspberry stars. Find yours at Bayshore Shopping Centre for $23.00.
What pairs nicely with high quality chocolate, like the ones I mentioned above? A soothing cup of tea. The David's Tea advent calendar comes with 24 boxes with two portions of tea in each box for you to sip and enjoy, as well as other little surprises. Buy your David's Tea advent calendar at St. Laurent Shopping Centre or Bayshore Shopping Centre.
Roger's Chocolates is another great Canadian chocolate company, and this year's box of chocolates features the art of Ottawa artist, Katerina Mertikas.
For the beauty lover:
There are so many beauty products waiting to be discovered with the L'occitane advent calendar, including hand creams like lavender, rose, and cherry blossom, body lotions, oils, soap, lip balms, and conditioner. L'occitane makes their delicious beauty products in Provence, France, so this is a true luxury advent calendar for those who love to take their of skin. This advent calendar is available in Sephora at Bayshore Shopping Centre, and retails for $64.
The Body Shop
The Dream Big Deluxe Advent calendar by The Body Shop is the perfect gift to give the beauty lover in your life–and perfect to keep for yourself, too! This large advent calendar has 25 luxurious treats–skincare, bath and body, hair products, and makeup, in both full and travel sized. Behind each box, you'll find information about a trailblazing woman with fun facts about how she 'dreamed big' and made history. Also, proceeds go to Plan Canada's youth program stop advance gender equality, so you're giving back in more ways than one.
Hello, lipstick lovers! This is the advent calendar for you. NYX always comes out with a super fun theme with their advent calendars, and this year, the Love Lust Disco Greatest Hits Lips advent calendar features the most popular NYX lip glosses and lipsticks. It's the ultimate way to glam up each day in December, with a different shade of lipstick or lip gloss. You can buy your NYX advent calendar online or in NYX stores, for $65.
'Tis the season for a good night's sleep! We all underestimate the importance of sleep, but Saje is here to help us get some rest in December since it's the busiest month of all. Saje is all about promoting wellness and their calendar has 12 nights of wellness products, to help ensure a good night's sleep during this hectic season. Inside each window, for 12 days you'll find products like body butter, a crystal to clear the mind of negativity, mists, mini diffusers, oils, and more, all to help you sleep better. This advent calendar is available at Saje in Bayshore Shopping Centre for $110.
For the kids
Lego is everyone's favourite toy, and every year, LEGO comes out with fun sets that kids (or adults!) can build every day. I love their LEGO city and LEGO Harry Potter sets–sure to be a big hit for Potter fans. You can find a variety of LEGO advent calendars at Indigo.
Happy Christmas ountdown!