Monday, 7 December 2015

Calendar Girl - Misadventures in the world of advent calendars

My parents never let us eat sugar cereal growing up, the only exception to this rule was when we were on vacation, so naturally when I moved out on my own I bought and sampled every type of sugar cereal imaginable.  This grew old pretty fast because I was sugar crashing in the morning at work due to the fact that I was essentially eating candy for breakfast.  I soon moved back towards the healthy breakfast fare I'd been raised on and haven't really looked back.

There a number of moments when, as a child and young adult, I've questioned the logic of my parents methods.  Now as an adult I find myself up to the same parenting shenanigans my mom and dad employed on me years ago.
Image Courtesy of Fan Pop

I am a pretty typical middle child.  In December every year my mother would purchase an advent calendar.  Stop and re-read that sentence.  One advent calendar....for three children.  During an already anticipation laden month we'd take turns and enjoy eight opportunities to open the little door and eat some chocolate.  As my sister got older, she determined she didn't like the "cardboardy" tasting chocolate from the calendar, so she'd give my brother and I an opportunity to vie for her piece of chocolate, so long as she got to be the one opening the little door when it was her turn.  I feel a need to mention that my sister, the eldest, would ensure on the years the calendar purchased had 25 doors instead of 24 that she received the coveted position of first pick so she would get nine turns to open the door, despite the fact that she wasn't even eating the freaking chocolate.  She was older, smarter, meaner, and clearly much better at math.

Many of my friends at school boasted that they had advent calendars all to themselves, day after day enjoying a bounty of truthfully pretty crummy chocolate.  I vowed that when I was a parent, my children would each have an advent calendar of their own, so they would never know the "trauma" I had experienced as a child in December. I recognize that my holiday experience is not as heartwarming as Tiny Tim.

chocolate advent calendar
Image Courtesy of

This year Grandma and Grandpa bought Molly and Jack a giant, gorgeous advent calendar filled with Lindt chocolate. This calendar is a far cry from the Bargain Harolds calendar my mom was buying us in the 1980s: my sister wouldn't have been sharing the chocolate from her turn with anyone cause this is some seriously awesome chocolate. The calendar sat on top of our fridge for around six weeks before the minions could begin to enjoy the bounty of this quality confection filled calendar and they asked about it almost daily.

Here's the thing, I have betrayed my 10 year old self.  Molly and Jack are alternating turns with the advent calendar and they don't seem to care.  The excitement surrounding the day that it's their turn to pick is like a mini Christmas morning each day after school.  They still both have a crap ton of Halloween candy left over, the chocolates in this calendar are gigantic, and there was no way any other calendar could compete with the chocolate giant from the grandparents.

So here it is, I'm just like my mother in December, only the chocolate is better, but I had absolutely nothing to do with that because I didn't buy the calendar.  If there are ever 25 days in an advent calendar I'm cutting that last piece of chocolate in half and they are going to smile and share it, and if they complain, I'll eat it myself.  Progress comes in baby steps.

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