Advent calendar ideas

50 Ideas for candy-free Advent calendar gifts

In Holidays & Parties, Kids by Katie Kavulla1 Comment

December is coming… are you ready?

For families who do Advent calendars, December 1st should be circled on your calendars, in red permanent marker, because that is the day when the fun begins! Hopefully you already have the Advent calendar itself ready-to-go and all you need to do is shop for little gifts to stuff it, but in reality, we know that you’ll be out shopping for your Advent calendar after the kiddos are tucked into bed on November 30th. Here’s 50 ideas to kick-off your Advent calendar gift shopping… and they are all candy-free!

Looking for more great ideas? Take a peek at these Cool gift ideas for girls

50 Ideas for candy-free Advent calendar gifts

Advent Calendar Gifts

Depending on the size of spaces, pockets or envelopes on your Advent calendar, you may need to get creative to make some of these ideas fit well! And, while these ideas are all candy-free, we’re certainly not opposed to grabbing a bag of holiday candy to fill a few days in your Advent calendar — it will help keep your costs down and your kids certainly won’t object!

1. Temporary tattoos (Tattly, $15 for a set of eight)
2. Gold dollar coins (real ones, not chocolate!)
3. Washi tape (Etsy, $3)
4. Kid-friendly lip balm (Poppy Drops, $4)
5. Bouncy balls (Land of Nod, $2)
6. Earrings or stick-on earrings
7. Toothbrushes (the cool ones with characters that you never let them buy)
8. Matchbook cars
9. Puzzle pieces (divide the pieces of a puzzle up so they get a few each day!)
10. Mini-Lego figurines
11. Hairbands and clips
12. Balloons… un-inflated, of course!
13. Flower seed packets
14. Cool glitter pens
15. Bundles of fresh crayons
16. Gift cards with small amounts of money
17. Bandaids
18. Blow-up beach balls
19. Mini-stuffed animals (Cost Plus, $20 for a set of three)
20. DIY coupons for upcoming holiday activities, like making gingerbread houses or going ice skating
21. Disposable cameras (try the underwater versions for the bathtub!)
22. Mini-Christmas light necklaces
23. Holiday cookie cutters
24. Pieces to a LEGO kit (give them a few pieces each day!)
25. Friendship bracelets
26. Christmas postcards
27. Silly Bands
28. Polished rocks
29. Card games, like Go Fish or Old Maid (Land of Nod, $13 for a set of five)
30. Bath tablets that expand into sponges
31. Jacks (Land of Nod, $5)
32. Mini-squirt guns
33. Rainbow Loom bands in holiday colors
34. Tennis balls
35. Kid-friendly nail polishes (PiggyPaint, $9)
36. Personalized pencils (Lillian Vernon, $12)
37. Clues to find a surprise hidden in the house
38. Funky shoelaces (J.Crew Crewcuts, $4)
39. Games for their Nintendo DS
40. Holiday socks
41. Invisible ink pens
42. Fake mustaches (Amazon, $4)
43. Sprinkles for decorating Christmas cookies
44. Coupons for getting out of a chore/bath/vegetable at dinner (Etsy, $5 for the printable file)
45. Paintbrushes
46. Ornaments for the Christmas tree
47. Hot chocolate packets
48. Goodies from the travel-size bins
49. Yo-yos
50. Cash (hey, a dollar bill rolled up with a ribbon goes a pretty long way with kids!)

What are your favorite Advent calendar gifts?

Meet the Author | Katie Kavulla

Having just made the move from big city life to settle down in the town where she and her husband both grew up, Katie Kavulla is a mom of three who strives to slow life down a bit… as impossible as that is with three kids under the age of 10. A blogger turned writer, Katie has spent the past few years combining the things that she loves into a career, with a focus on helping other moms tell their story, because Katie truly believes that every mom has one to tell.

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