I love the idea of advent calendars. Not so much 25 days of gift giving (because if your child is anything like mine, there's no shortage of "stuff"), but I love the idea of filling the calendar with 25 days of activities or notes. (And, sure, maybe a little something small.) And I love the creative, non-traditional calendars out there.
I found 40 of the best advent calendars — candy, non-candy, religious, modern, etc. — over at Babble.com. Go check it out!