Tight on cash this holiday season, but still want to give something special? A homemade Advent calendar can be the perfect solution to delight the receiver each day leading up to Christmas. (It can easily be adapted for Hanukkah, as well, with a gift for each of the eight days.) When you think of Advent calendars, one of those simple milk-chocolate filled cardboard-and-plastic ones sold at grocery stores may come to mind. But this holiday staple can mean so much more when you create your own and fill it with small personal gifts and notes.
In this project, we're using old walnut shells and found ribbon to enclose a small gift each day. (So if you are eating any walnuts soon, save those shells!) Each shell is meant to double as an ornament. We've included some ideas for the gifts, but it is up to you to decide how elaborate each gift will be.