Christmas and the holidays are always an exciting time, especially for children. The family gets together, gifts are exchanged and the best food is eaten. But you can make it an even more enriching experience with our list of 10 fun holiday activities and traditions.
Chocolate advent calendars are a staple of modern Christmas and while we won’t advise you to deny your children their sweet tasty goodness, why not countdown to Christmas with an educational or creative twist alongside their regular chocolaty treats?
You could make a second calendar with interesting and educational facts, or agree that everyone does one new good deed each day. The possibilities are endless.
Write a Letter to Santa
Writing a letter to Santa can be a magical experience, but be careful not to just make it a list of materialistic demands. Actually sit down with your child and craft a well-written and heartfelt letter, reflecting on their achievements and struggles that year, while politely asking Santa for some gifts and thanking him for his hard work.
Depending on the age and susceptibility of your child, Instead of posting it – leave it in a special location and suggest that it will magically fly to Santa’s workshop itself. This is especially effective if you or a family member has a fireplace and chimney.
You can check the letter a couple of times before ‘discovering’ that it’s gone, and therefore must have started its magical journey.
Where’s the challenge in stacking all of the presents under the tree? Why not mix things up this year and start the tradition of holding a gift hunt, where the children have to answer clues and use some ingenuity to find some of their gifts?
Of course, getting a good range of gifts is not always easy, especially if you’ve recently been hit with some unexpected expenses. Getting a $1,000 dollar loan online is a relatively easy process and can be a helpful lifeline if you haven’t budgeted very well in the run-up.
Just remember to do your sums and tighten your belt in the New Year.
Decorating the home and Christmas tree is one of the most fun things you can do, but making some of your own decorations is even better. Your child will benefit from the sense of accomplishment and can be proud of their creations being put up for display.
If you’re not the artist person, you can purchase wreath-making kits and other template decorations to give everyone some guidance.
Placing an Ornament on the Top of the Tree
Whether you use an angel, star, fairy, Santa figure or something personal; adorning the top of the Christmas tree is the most important task!
If you have more than one child, perhaps you can decide a fair way of determining who gets the big job? Who got the best grades? Who has been the most helpful?
It wouldn’t be Christmas without a movie marathon – a great chance to relax, unwind and still spend quality time with the children.
There’s no doubt they’ll have some Hollywood Blockbusters in mind, but make sure to include some of the classics as well. The best choice is something all generations can enjoy and have probably already seen a million times!
It’s a Wonderful Life, one of the popular renditions of The Grinch or Scrooge, or even Home Alone.
It’s not all about movies; reading to your children (especially on Christmas Eve) can be a fulfilling yearly tradition.
A Visit from St. Nicholas is the classic poem by Clement Clarke Moore that begins: “Twas the night before Christmas when all thro’ the house.” It’s the perfect ritual before bed and easy enough for children of all ages to recite.
If a longer story fits the bill, nothing beats Charles Dickens’ ‘A Christmas Carol,’ which teaches the moral values of giving and community through the transformation of Ebenezer Scrooge.
Baking and Food Prep
Children love getting in the way when you’re preparing all of that great food for the Holidays. The unique sights, sounds, and smells are exciting!
While we don’t suggest you entrust younger children with the turkey, setting aside some time for baking Christmas cookies or other creative festive treats can be a tasty way to bond and make your children feel like they’re part of the process.
Whether it’s donating some of your old clothing and belongings, contributing to a food drive, or helping the homeless in some way – the Holidays are never short of charitable causes you can get involved with.
It also presents you with the perfect opportunity to teach your children that Christmas isn’t just about getting gifts from Santa, but being thankful for what we have and giving to others as well.
There’s a certain charm in taking a family walk after Christmas dinner, especially when the streets are quiet because everybody else is having the post-dinner nap. It’s the perfect time for children to try any outdoor gifts and for everybody else to chat and reflect on the year.
We hope you enjoyed our ideas and can use them to create those special and long-lasting memories that your children will treasure. Have some unique activities and traditions of your own? Let us know in the comments below!