Christmas countdown: At first glance, I thought this countdown calendar was some can of fancy, hand-sewn deal that kids could look at but not touch. But then I realized that it's actually made from paper that's meant to be cut away to reveal each day's treats and surprises. Kids will love watching the calendar shrink as Christmas gets closer.

A-door-able Advent calendar: Open the door to fun this holiday season with this cute craft. Use old catalogs and magazines to make the designs, and you can include special surprises for the kids behind each door.  

Origami Advent calendar: This elegant and impressive Advent calendar comes together quickly once you get the hang of the envelope fold. You can use random scraps of gift wrap, holiday cards or recycled paper to get the holiday design you want.  

Coniferous calendar: I love the simplicity of this calendar almost as much as my kids love its forest full of surprises. Underneath each tree, you can hide something special for the kids, whether it's candy, a small toy, or just a note that lets them know how much you love them.

Santa calendar: Most Advent calendars get smaller and smaller as you get closer and closer to Christmas. But this one actually gets bigger and more festive as the holiday approaches. Countdown the days to Christmas with this printable template that lets kids grow Santa's beard all the way to the big day.

Countdown to Christmas: DIY Advent calendars
Forget the prepackaged boxes of chocolates. Count down the days to Christmas with one of these awesome Advent calendars you can make and design yourself.