Thanks so much for all of these great ideas!
My advent calendar is currently 'in the works'. It's a larger one...it'll fit in a 16 x 20 frame. I'm using the Making Memories St. Nick line
...LOVE that stuff! Anyway...it'll have 25 removable chipboard pieces (with magnets on the back) which reveal another piece of paper that's decorated...so there's still something purty to look at after the 'number' piece is removed. Each year I'll put various activities underneath that I can do with my kids. I got several of my ideas from Ali Edwards' blog
...things such as "make breakfast for dinner and eat in your pajamas" and "have a picnic dinner by the Christmas tree" and "have hot chocolate with all the fixins".
Just in case I don't get the advent calendar finished this year (as I'm busy getting ready for company), I did make a paper chain with my kids (ages 4, 2, and 1) with the activities on them. I went ahead and started it yesterday, allowing us to do things like, 'put Christmas lights up on the windows'. It is totally helping me get the holiday decorations out a little bit at a time without feeling overwhelmed. The best part of having the activities written down, is that it will help me be a bit more organized in doing so many fun things with my kids. So often I get to Christmas and realize I haven't done half of what I had hoped to. I did have a calendar by my side so I could be sure that certain activities when on certain days. Oh yes...my DH and one DD have birthdays in December, so the link for their birthday is a special color so it stands out...it helps the kids keep track of those big events too.
I'm sorry I don't have any pictures of my advent calendar, but will surely post when I'm finished. Maybe I'll just take a picture of the 'work in progress'...as it is definitely that. Sorry I'm so wordy today!!!