This blog is here for you to find fun learning activities to do with your children. We share great ideas we find and love on the Internet, as well as ideas we come up with on our own! We also like to share resources we find helpful.

To find ideas for your child, click on the age range blog label or on the theme/topic you are looking for (on the left side of the page). In each post, we try to list optimal age ranges for the activity, but you must judge for yourself if it is appropriate for your child. When you try an activity out, please comment and let us (and everyone else) know how your child liked it!

Friday, November 27, 2009

Making the Holidays Memorable

I love this time of year! It's a time to bless others, spend time with family, celebrate traditions and make new memories. It's also the busiest time of the year in many cases. I want to slow down and make this year especially memorable and fun for all of us.
Each day of December we are going to do one thing to help celebrate. I'd like as many of them as possible be either free or inexpensive, involve helping or blessing someone else, and/or help us slow down and enjoy family and this time of the year.
So start making your list, too! It doesn't have to be time-consuming and it should bring a smile to your face (and your cute little munchkins, too).

Here's some to get you started, in no particular order:
1. Start your Advent Calendar.
2. Decorate your tree (and your house)!
3. Have an indoor snowball fight. (Balled up scraps of paper+bundled up kiddos+couches as forts=you are the coolest mom ever).
4. Walk through the neighborhood looking at decorations.
5. Watch a Christmas movie (Charlie Brown, It's a Wonderful Life, etc).
6. Bake Christmas cookies and deliver some to neighbors, shut-ins, or a nursing home near you.
7. Check out holiday books at the library.
8. Make a birthday cake for Jesus.
9. Take your little one to pick out a toy to donate.
10. Fill a shoebox for a charity.
11. Visit family.
12. Pictures with Santa.
13. Have a cookie swap.
14. Serve at a local soup kitchen.
15. Make Christmas cards together.
16. Make peanut butter pine cone bird feeders.
17. Write letters to Santa.
18. Have a birthday party for Jesus.
19. Host a dessert party.
20. Make homemade ornaments for family members.
21. Have holiday portraits taken.
22. Start a Christmas book collection. Buy one new Christmas story each year. If possible, donate a book to the local library, toy drive, or school.
23. See a holiday play or cantata.
24. Reenact the Christmas Story as a family.
25. Sip hot chocolate and read Twas The Night Before Christmas.
26. Go Christmas caroling.
27. Go to a holiday craft show or bazaar.
28. Bake a holiday treat and take it to a local fire station, police station, or hospital.
29. Pop popcorn and play a board game as a family.
30. Make a holiday craft. You could probably do this each day!
31. Celebrate the first day of Winter.
32. If you get snow, start a tradition of First Snow of the Year (insert treat here...fudge, pie, cake, ice cream sundaes, snow cream, etc).
33. Pick a family to bless with dinner once this month. You can invite them over, bring them dinner, order them pizza, etc. Or if you go out to eat, pick a family and pay their bill. You can do this in the fast food line, too.
34. Write a letter/draw a picture for people in your family telling them how much they mean to you, why the are special, or something memorable. Put it in their stocking or mail it.
35. Put together a care package for a soldier.

Have fun!! Let me know your ideas, too! I'd love to hear about your traditions and how you are blessing others this season.


Langdons said...

We have been making a gingerbread house for the past few years. It's easy to do with the premade gingerbread house kits you can buy at Wal-mart or Target.

Kyle, Amanda, and Tobias said...

Something we always do is light the advent wreath. Each Sunday night we light another candle on the wreath and say a short prayer.

I also have idle hopes of doing a prayer bead advent devotion each day, but I have to make the prayer beads first so it might happen next year unless I can find cute ones on etsy.com :)

Raegan said...

You'll have to post those. I don't think I've seen either! What kind of candles do you use so you don't catch anything on fire? (Is that a dumb question?) :)

Raegan said...

I love Gingerbread Houses. Any suggestions from those who have done it before on doing them with 2 year olds? I was going to try it this year but wanted to get myself ready. :)

Plowmanators said...

Raegan, put your patient hat on! We did that last year with Brayden and Kaitlyn (then 3.5 and 20months). They both wanted to eat the candy the entire time...then you can imagine how the house will look if you just let them do it. Which is totally fine; you just can't go into it hoping to have the house look like it does on the box.

Raegan said...

I have to go into it realizing that it probably won't even look like a house when we are done. :) I'm thinking I might put the house together and then let her decorate. Does that sound reasonable?

Plowmanators said...

Yes, that is an excellent idea. And do it after dinner so you won't be concerned about the candy entering her mouth...you can of course tell her no eating it, but that is kind of mean :) You might put some in a bowl and say "these are for eating, these are for decorating"

Kyle, Amanda, and Tobias said...

Haha, I have to see the end products from your gingerbread house activity! I'll be waiting until next year at least to be doing that with Tobias, unfortunately he likes chocolate like his daddy :)

As for the advent candles and chaplet/prayer beads I'll make a post about them sometime soon. Maybe this will motivate me to actually make the beads finally! I just took some pictures of the advent wreath and candles to show how we do it.


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