I can remember how excited I was the first time my family received an Advent calendar in the mail. Some cousin or family friend -- maybe a godmother of one of us -- thought it was a good idea to send an Advent calendar to help us get ready for Christmas. I was about five years old and in kindergarten.
The paper calendar had a beautiful Christmas scene on it and it was covered in sparkly glitter. My sisters and I were thrilled and anxiously awaited our turn to open a window and have my mother read us the Biblical quote. When morning arrived each day, we would run to the place where the Advent calendar hung on the wall, all excited and giggly. My mother would calm us down and we all helped her remember which of the three of us was next in line to open the window that day.
If it were my older sister, she would try to read the quote herself with her newly acquired phonics skills. If it were my younger sister, who was only three, the two of us older ones would shudder in case she were to rip the window off in her enthusiasm. I was in the middle, neither able to read nor too little to be careful. At least that's how I remember it. My sisters may have seen it differently!
When I grew up and had children of my own, a dear friend sent them each an Advent calendar so there wouldn't be any fights as to who got to open a window. (She had raised five children of her own.) I found the concept a novel one, as sharing the opening of windows for my sisters and me was part of the joy of the activity. But preventing fights has its strong points, I must add.