I wanted to make an advent calender that we could use year after year and that the boys could actually do themselves. I'm very sick of those chocolate things - too much waste, the boys can't open the doors themselves and they don't like the chocolate - all in all a waste of time! I cut out the numbers from old wrapping paper, stuck them onto coloured paper and sprinkled them with glitter and little stars before laminating them. I then used a cheap red door mat to velcro them to. It has to be kept in the cupboard because the numbers would go walkabout otherwise!! It worked better than I expected actually, with the boys happily sitting and placing the numbers on and counting across with us.
I found the idea for the illuminated jars on this website - http://www.allfreecrafts.com/giftinajar/litjars.shtml
For ours we used battery powered lights which just sit behind the jar and I just topped them with a bit of red fabric and tied it up with tinsel. Although I had to do the lights and the lids for James and Charlie, it did give them firstly some sensory play with the pot pourri and secondly they put it all in the jar!