November 3, 2016

24 Books of Christmas Advent Calendar – A book a day!

24 Books of Christmas - Advent Calendar - Great idea for small kids. Each night read a different Christmas book together as a family.

Add it to your Christmas Pinterest board here!

If you’re looking for a frugal, long-lasting advent calendar, let me recommend the 24 books of Christmas Advent calendar. My friend DeAnn told me about this a couple years and we’ve been doing ever since! I love that it’s family activity – we take turns opening a different book, each night, and we read the story together as a family. . . usually in the glow of the Christmas tree.


  • As many as 24 Christmas books (they don’t have to be new, I wrap up a lot of the same books every year!)
  • Wrapping Paper
  • Tape/scissors
  • Paper for labels

Basic Instructions

  1. Wrap up 24 of your favorite Christmas books
  2. Label them 1 through 24.
  3. Each night have kids take turns opening a book. You will open #24 on December 1, with 24 days until Christmas. I save The Night Before Christmas for Christmas Eve!!
  4. Read the book as a family each night
  5. You’ll open #1 on Christmas Eve! I saved The Night Before Christmas for that night!


More tips for creating your Christmas Advent Calendar

  • The first night, I had a *new* Christmas book for each kid. Just to start off with a fun treat.
  • If you don’t have 24 books, just wrap up the Christmas books you have! For example, if you only have 12 books, just open a new book every other day.
  • The books don’t have to be new! We’ve picked up many books at thrift shops over the years!
  • Midway through the month, I wrapped up some Christmas workbooks that I found at the Dollar Tree, they include stickers and activities. One for each kid.
  • You can label them or leave them all unlabeled and let the kids pick!

I’d love to hear – do you have a favorite Advent calendar tradition? 


    Leave your comments here...


  1. I too have been doing this tradition for over 10 years…Our favorites include: The Gift of the Magi illustrated by PJ Lynch, Twelve Bells for Santa (we make individual voices for the kids in the book)by Crosby Bonsall, Any Christmas/winter book by Jan Brett, The Snowflake book by photographer Kenneth Libbrecht. On Sundays, we have a holiday treat, read a book, and enjoy singing a Christmas carol. During the week, the with all the hubub of hw, we just read a book.

  2. After I read this on your blog I started doing this as well. I also added in our Christmas movies to the mix so we never know what might be opened on any one night. I don’t label them, just let the kids choose. I think I have enjoyed this tradition more than the kids!

  3. I am doing this for the grandkids this year for the first time. I’m glad to see how some of you are doing it. I bought 25 books for each child and plan to start on December 1. I didn’t even think about making them Christmas books. The school (and their teachers) had lists for the Scholastic Books so I went with those. It helped the school with their fundraising, they are books that I know are age appropriate and I hope will get the kids used to reading every day. I also bought some more books to have here. They aren’t very expensive so I think it’s a win, win, win. I am going to see what I can find for Christmas books to use towards the end of the month. I will swap out some of the Scholastic books and just keep them here for my library.

  4. You can also check out Xmas books from the library and wrap them- just be sure to label them to be opened first. 🙂

  5. We do an activity advent calendar. Each day is a different activity such going to a Christmas concert, going to the lighted park (all the trees have Christmas lights among other things) with hot cocoa, wrapping presents, taking toys to Toys for Tots, play Christmas games, watch a Christmas movie, have an Elf Brunch (all the food, plates, and silverware are tiny), etc. The kids love it and even though they are getting older they still insist on doing it. =)

  6. We do this as well, we started last year (when my daughter was 1.) I bought books from the goodwill and whatever she received as gifts. We have about 12 Christmas books and the rest are just some of her favorites, she will be two in 2 weeks and she LOvES this so much. She went over today (we started a week ago 🙂 and searched through all the books until she found the perfect one, went to the reading chair and opened it up. We don’t label, she chooses, however, the night before Christmas was wrapped in comics so we know which one to save for last. Oh, I just wrapped them in all my old newspaper. Save the cute paper for the tree…! Great tradition

  7. What a cool idea! I’m going to start stockpiling christmas books this year!

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