Yes, it is that time of year when we start shopping in advance to avoid the Christmas panic. Well, except grannies. They had their Christmas shopping finished by June.
By Nicole Buckler
Here’s an idea for you. Get your Christmas shopping done now. Otherwise, you will find yourself in consumer combat with other humans in shopping centres on the edges of towns you haven’t heard of. Such shopping centres will be trying to sap your will to live when they gridlock you into an underground carpark with only carbon monoxide as sustenance. Don’t cut into valuable drinking time! Start your shopping now. A good first step to take is getting your advent calendars organised. Here are some suggestions that will get you serious kudos across clan lines.
Wine Advent Calendar
You know how we are always joking about that wine advent calendar… well Aldi is actually selling one this year! For €69.99, you can get one of these and justify drinking every day in the name of advent indoor activities.
The calendar features a mini bottle of wine behind each of the 24 doors. (Mini? WHAT?) There are different wines to try every day. If that isn’t the best sentence ever then I don’t know what is. There are red, white, rosé and sparkling wines, every day brings a special treat. Aldi says this calendar is “perfect for sharing” to which I say WHAT A LOAD OF RUBBISH I ain’t sharing mini bottles of anything.
Jewellery Advent Calendar
Aldi are also cornering the advent calendar market with other ideas for those who don’t drink, like children and hopefully the school bus driver. The jewellery advent calendar is going for €14.99.
This is a really, really nice idea for little girls. Also for boys who are rather fabulous, and male students who don’t have the money to buy their girlfriends actual diamonds or anything mined from deep under Africa. This present will still get lads points for romantic effort. Girlfriends tend to like jewellery even if it isn’t robbed from a High Street store. Jewellery means one thing to a girl: that a boy feels romantic towards them. To prove my point, lads, try giving your girlfriend a vacuum or a lawnmower this Christmas and see what happens.
This advent calendar has a bead behind every window, including diamanté stones, enamelled charms, and patterned glass beads. Plus, there is a metal alloy chain bracelet. So by Christmas the girl/woman/ fabulous man will have their own completed charm bracelet in time to show it to Santa. Let’s hope Santa isn’t giving her one too.
If you want to give some kids a really nice “keepable” advent calendar, Aldi also have a wooden advent calendars for €14.99. These are reusable too, so you could use it again and again with a different treat or toy in every draw every year. You can buy any of these advent calendars from the 2nd November.
Tea Connoisseur Advent Calendar
This is one you’ll have to order online. But it is worth it. This is the ultimate granny present, enabling granny to sample different brews in a delicious countdown to Christmas. It costs £55.00 from newbyteas.com.
The calendar is actually a replica of The House of Newby London headquarters, adorned with snowflakes and a festive ribbon. Each drawer contains 4 individually wrapped tea bags. Mmm yummy this makes me want to be a granny well before my time. I’d better start pressuring my offspring for grandkids.
The Rudolph Advent Calendar
This is another one you will have to order online for the kids, available for £24 from Bubblegumballoons. The kids get to pop a pre-stuffed balloon nose every day for a chocolate.
The garland can be placed anywhere against a wall or a fireplace, and the kids get to murder the balloon for the chocolate. Noisy! Make sure no one in your house is prone to heart attacks upon hearing loud bangs, or you’ll see dead people.
Smiggle Advent Calendar
This is one you might get in store if you are quick, if not you’ll have to order it online. If anyone has a girl aged 12 or under you will know they are obsessed with anything Smiggle. This is the stationery-du-jour for any discerning girl with a pencil case.
This calendar is filled with 25 goodies. They are surprises you won’t be able to find in store, including scented pens, colourful erasers and plenty more. Golden tickets have also been hidden in 30 different advent calendars, which will give the lucky winners money to spend in store. It’s like Charlie’s Chocolate Factory all over again, but without the vast inheritance at the end.
Your little girl is gonna love you a whole tonne if you get this! She might even concentrate on her school work… well she won’t, she will be busy boasting about her Smiggle stuff, but still, you can buy her love with this for sure.
John Lewis Edinburgh Gin Advent Calendar
This is one for granny and any parent who needs a stiff drink at the end of the day. A gin advent calendar is a must-have for anyone who likes the good things in life. Unless you are one of those people who can’t drink gin because it leaves you crying on the stairs at 2am.
The countdown to Christmas will be merry, warming and aromatic with this Edinburgh Gin Advent Calendar of 25 mini 5cl gin bottles. A variety of tastes including juniper, pine, floral, lavender, soft spice and citrus wait behind each calendar window. Or you can just drink them all in one night like I would, and cry on stairs because you need to go out and get another advent calendar. Good times!
World’s First Cheese Advent Calendar
Aldi are doing a cheese advent calendar for adults. This might be one which requires you to fight off other people in Aldi with your handbag/keys.
Yes every day in the lead-up to Christmas, you can sample 24 individually-wrapped cheeses, including Jarlsberg, Applewood, Mexicana and Ilchester behind the doors. I’m not sure how well-supplied Irish stores will be with this advent calendar. But I think it is worth protesting on the streets for more of these. We are Irish, if anyone knows and deserves cheese, it is us.
Lily’s Kitchen Advent Calendar for Dogs and Cats
Not forgetting our pets, there is now an advent calendar for fur babies. Packed with irresistible treats, your animal is going to love you. Your cat might even stop plotting your murder after you give this to them.
Treats include chicken with liver and turkey with cranberry, among others. Sounds better than what I could come up with on Christmas day after a four-hour stint with an oven. I think I might just give these to my human family too, save me poisoning them with my cooking. These can be bought in Tesco, or online.
Nail Varnish Advent Calendar
For the glamourpusses amongst us, this will be the best Christmas ever. This advent calendar features a huge selection of Ciaté’s chic shades, supplied in mini paint pots. There’s a new colour to try every day in the Christmas lead-up. If someone doesn’t get this for me at Christmas there will be words. I don’t know what words, but there will be a damn lot of them.
Craft Beer Advent Calendar
For the craft beer enthusiast, this is an excellent advent idea. It is cram-packed with 24 amazing craft beers from some of the very best breweries from all across the world. This is a great way to sample a variety of unusual or hard-to-find beer.
This is a butch present for those amongst us who are definitely not impressed with tea advent calendars or sparkly nails. Go forth, butch beer drinkers, this advent calendar is for you. It is also good for a solid suck-up to the boss, for that spouse who you can’t buy anything for EVER and for those clients who you want more business from. Remember that beer solves all problems, always.
At the end of the day, we can talk about advent calendars all we like. But the truth is, the best Christmas present is always a copy of the Old Moore’s Almanac. Pre-order yours today at the link below.