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The start of December and the countdown for Christmas is only a few days away. Some of you may already have your advent calendars at the ready and are poised to tuck into a delicious bite-sized piece of chocolate, cheese, or swig of alcohol each morning. However, for those of you who haven't been given one by your parents, significant other, or children this year, ROSL have you covered. 

The celebration of Advent stretches right back to the fourth century and begun as a celebration of the four-week period starting on the Sunday nearest the feast of St Andrew the Apostle (30 November). It was originally a time for converts to Christianity to prepare themselves for baptism, but is now more commonly associated with the anticipation of Christmas.

The tradition of advent calendars dates to the mid-19th century when German Protestants made chalk marks on doors or lit candles to count down the days leading up to Christmas. The first printed advent calendars were introduced in the early 1900s by Gerhard Lang. Inspired by the calendar his mother had made for him which contained 24 coloured pictures. Lang modified his calendars to include the little doors that are a staple of most Advent calendars today and hid small chocolates behind each one. From these humble beginnings, Advent calendars have developed into Lego mini figures calendars, cheese calendars and even alcoholic calendars for adults (because when did adults ever say they didn’t want an advent calendar?).

This year, from the start of December, ROSL will be releasing its own virtual advent calendar. Every day the team will be uploading a little Christmas treat to our Twitter and Facebook networks, from pictures and videos to festive games and event. The aim is to bring a little bit of extra festive joy to all our members.To ensure you don’t miss out on your ROSL Advent calendar make sure you follow us on Twitter @Rosl1910 or on Facebook here. If you want to get involved, just use #ROSLAdvent on your posts to us.

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