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My sister asked Santa for an advent calendar this year, and I plan to craft it myself using this easy how-to video. Thanks, Howcast! For handy instructions, read on!:

Step 1:
Decorate a piece of cardboard or poster board large enough to hold 24 small boxes, envelopes, or pouches. Cut the cardboard into a holiday shape, such as a Christmas tree, wreath, or snowman.

Step 2:
Decorate your containers. The possibilities are endless: You could paint them, draw patterns, cover them with sequins-use your imagination.

Step 3:
Number the containers 1 to 24 by whatever means you like-construction paper cutouts, magic marker, holiday stickers, and so on.

Step 4:
Glue the containers to the cardboard. You can arrange them randomly or in a pattern. Make sure the containers are attached in a way that allows them to be opened easily.

Step 5:
In each container, place a surprise-like a piece of candy or small toy.

Step 6:
On December 1st, begin opening a container a day, starting with the one labeled "1."

Step 7:
Continue this fun daily ritual until the final box is opened on Christmas Eve!


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