The holiday season is upon us and that means there are lots to do to get ready for the big day. Christmas is one of the most beloved holidays for little ones. Maybe it’s because of the glistening lights or the family togetherness or the big man in red? No matter the reason, your kids won’t be shy about asking the question, “How many days until Christmas?” To get your family ready for Christmas you just need to put in a little preplanning and a big dose of magic. Here are the top ways to make the countdown to Christmas one of the most memorable parts of the holiday season.
One of the best ways to help your children plan their activities from now until Christmas is to decide to create a family calendar. Whether you buy a calendar app, decorate an advent calendar or unwrap a tiny gift for each day of the month of December, having a visual to look at will help your kids learn to be excited and patient at the same time.
Find the Perfect Tree
One of the best childhood memories is that of families heading out to look for the perfect Christmas tree to bring home to decorate. Whether venturing out in your own backyard or heading to a Christmas Tree farm, your kiddos won’t be able to forget the smells of the fresh pine or the excitement of having a tree strapped to the roof of your car. If your family opts for an artificial tree, there’s still magic in heading to a Christmas Tree farm to take pictures or sip hot cocoa while you admire the pines. Or be adventurous and make this the first year you get a real tree.
Have a special day by making a gingerbread house and eating all of the scrumptious bites that come with putting it together. Having a joyous memory of decorating a candy-covered house can usher in the Christmas season in the most fun way. Make the whole family participate and watch as all other worries melt away.
The Arrival of the Elf
There’s nothing that says “It’s Almost Christmas!” as much as the arrival of the family Elf On The Shelf. These little guys are sweet, yet sometimes mischievous. The little elves get adopted by a family and given a name. Each night during the Christmas season, the elf moves to a different spot after he flies to the North Pole to report to Santa about the child’s daily behavior. Don’t touch the elf though, or he’s sure to lose his magic.
Christmas crafts are just the most fun. Whether making your own Christmas card, crafting a glittery ornament or making your own Christmas wreath, your kids will love getting a little messy during the holiday season. Let them take the lead on what they want to make. You’ll be surprised by how beautiful they make each item. Homemade gifts are an excellent way for kids to play a role in the gift-giving process. Creating homemade garland for the tree or fireplace is also a great way to get kids involved.
Go Winter Crazy
Have “Snowed In” days even if it isn’t snowing. Build a pillow fort, make some popcorn and hot cocoa and settle in for a great Christmas story or movie. Some of the most beloved stories are The Night Before Christmas or The Nutcracker. Some of the most beloved movies are “It’s A Wonderful Life,” “The Grinch Who Stole Christmas,” “Frosty The Snowman,” “The Polar Express,” “Rudolph: The Red-Nosed Reindeer” and “Frozen.”
Let your kids help with writing the family Christmas Cards. They will have a blast drawing cute pictures on the envelopes or addressing them for you. Also, let them check the mail for cards each day. Just receiving a different envelope in the mail can bring great joy to your child. Also, spend time writing a letter to Santa, so he knows just what your little one wants for Christmas morning.
As soon as the season starts, begin getting in the holiday season by planning Christmas carols in the car and throughout the house. Some of the most beloved songs of the Christmas season are “White Christmas,” “All I Want For Christmas Is You,” “Silent Night,” “The Little Drummer Boy,” and “Away In A Manger.”
Christmas Light Tour
Even if you just drive around your neighborhood, it’s so fun to go out and look at the Christmas lights in your area. It’s breathtaking and just the most fun. You’ll love talking about the decorations with your kiddos. You’ll learn some amazing information about them too – like if they prefer color or white lights.
Give the Gift of Giving Back
There is no greater gift you can give than teaching your children the importance of giving back. Whether it be providing a meal to a family in need or giving a gift to a child who doesn’t have one, there is so much opportunity to give during the holiday season. Look at your local food pantry and keep a look out for toy and coat drives. This will help littles turn away from themselves and their wants and focus more on the needs of others.
Adopt a New Tradition
If all else fails, throw caution to the wind and start a new tradition for your family. Whether it’s adopting some awesome traditions from another culture or paving the way with a new idea, there’s something amazing to be gained from venturing out of your comfort zone. Talk to others about what they do during the holiday season. Whether it be matching holiday pajamas or Chinese food on Christmas Eve, your traditions are what you make them.
Making Christmas memories starts with a little planning but don’t get so caught up on the list or the plan that you forget to enjoy how beautiful this time is for your family. Old traditions or new, there’s something magical about the Christmas season, and that’s definitely something you can plan on!