Wendy Poling
Frequent Contributor

Having a countdown calendar is not a new concept. Pinterest and other websites are filled with ideas to inspire us on how to celebrate the end each day; reminding us how much closer we are to the end of a long separation.

I recently came across a new concept in counting down the days until our loved one returns. It totally turns the idea upside down. What is it you ask?


Counting up instead of counting down!


I really like this idea and find it MUCH more fun in terms of trying to explain "length of time" to little kids, especially when dates change or get extended, which is usually the case.


Here are 3 ways to count up to the end of a deployment:


A Quarter a Day – Let your kids place one quarter into a big jar at bedtime, signifying the end of another day accomplished and one more day closer to homecoming. What will you do with all these quarters you ask, come the big day? Although I currently shutter at the thought of being at Chuck E. Cheese's® surrounded by preschoolers having the time of their lives, I'm a firm believer for them it is the next best thing to Disney World®. Use the quarters for a trip to Chuck E. Cheese's®, the Go-Cart track, or even Dave and Busters® for the older kids. If you happen to have six kids, this might not be very cost effective so consider going with dimes instead of quarters.


Paper chain with a twist – Instead of all the work of creating a really long paper chain and removing a link on each day, start with one link and add a link each day. Kids can write on the link what they did that day, similar to a journal entry. They can write a message for mom or dad, or glue a photo on the link. As the chain grows longer, the kids can see how far they have come and the returning parent has a unique, creative keepsake to read through and help them catch up on all the activity and events that have occurred.


Surprise calendar – Similar to the design of an Advent Calendar, work with your soon to be deploying spouse to create this unique type of calendar. Inside each pocket have a small note from mom or dad with a word of encouragement, how much they miss them, favorite memory or something to look forward to upon return. You can also include photos, poems, and even small treats.


These are just three creative ideas to get you started on making a unique deployment countdown calendar.


Do you have an idea youd like to share? Please leave a comment on this post on how you celebrated the end of each day you were closer to being reunited with your loved one, best friend, and love of your life!


Source thread:

How to countdown the days? – via MilitarySOS.com