This is the season of Advent, the first of the six seasons in the church liturgical year. Unlike some of the church seasons that begin on a different date each year and vary in length, Advent is always the same. Advent is always celebrated the four Sundays before Christmas at church and for many the Advent countdown begins December 1st and lasts 24 days. The last day of Advent is Christmas Eve.
During Advent we wait and anticipate the birth of Jesus on Christmas Day. Many Sunday scripture readings are from Old Testament prophecies.
The colors for Advent are violet and blue. Most churches, ours included, have an Advent wreath made up of five candles, three violet and one pink that encircle a white candle. A candle is lit each Sunday as we sing O Come, O Come, Emmanuel. The white candle, the fifth and final candle, is lit with the all the other candles on Christmas Eve.
That is the countdown to Christmas at church.
The countdown here at home includes an Advent calendar. Advent calendars have become a popular family tradition and activity and there are a variety of themes from which to choose. The calendar activity begins on December 1st and you open one treat or do one activity each day through Christmas Eve, a 24-day countdown.
Over the years we have done several different Advent calendars: a cheese advent calendar, a Keurig coffee calendar, and chocolate Advent calendar. The chocolate Advent calendar can be hard to resist. I read this humorous comment about a chocolate Advent calendar early in the Advent season: According to my chocolate Advent calendar there are only three days to Christmas! Chocolate is way too tempting and you have to discipline yourself to one treat a day.
This year we are doing an Advent puzzle. We are both puzzlers so this is a really fun Advent calendar for us.
This Advent puzzle calendar is actually 24 individual puzzles that join together to form one large 27 x 19-inch puzzle, with about 1000 pieces. The pieces of each daily section are in individually numbered boxes and we assemble one box of puzzle pieces per day.
Here is our Advent calendar puzzle on day 15 of Advent:
Each day’s puzzle has about 42 pieces and each piece is numbered on the back, according to its day number. That will come in handy when we dis-assemble the puzzle and put it away. We can put the daily pieces into their corresponding numbered box. Or, I may mount the puzzle and reuse the 24 boxes for a different Advent project.
We did have to laugh about one claim listed on the box: Each Piece is Unique, Automatic Error Correction. This is a false statement. I guess you could say each piece is unique, according to the picture it fits in, but there is no automatic error correction. We have put several pieces in the wrong place and there was nothing automatic about fixing the mistake.
This is what the competed puzzle will look like:
This is a fun Advent calendar project if you enjoy puzzling. We are certainly enjoying putting it together.