The kids are out of school. That means they are now home ALL day, ready for some holiday fun.
It is a great time of year to draw closer to one another, serve others and have some fun. It is not too late to fill your families days with activities together, all the way through the New Year.
I put together a list of 20 of our favorite ideas for holiday family fun. Put them on your list and check them twice.
Don’t miss my favorites: #2, #3, #4, #7, #10, #13, #15, #17. I have lots of favorites. Wink. Wink.
**If you have an advent calendar, with a few doors left to open, why not replace some of the candy and treats with slips of paper that list some of these fun family activities. Your kids will love the time together. **
1. Family Movie Night. Watch a favorite Holiday movie together. Don’t forget the popcorn.
2. Drive around town and look at Christmas lights. Take a little treat for the house with the “Best Christmas Lights”. Leave it on their porch with a little note. Make hot chocolate for everyone and take it with you to drink as you go. Make sure the cups have lids to avoid the spills. The paper cups with lids that they sell at the grocery store work great.
3. Read about holiday traditions around the world. Teach your children where their ancestors came from and learn about the traditions there. You could even make a traditional treat from the country. It is very easy to find recipes on line.
4. Make Christmas sugar cookies. Let the kids help decorate. Even your little ones can help. Not only can they decorate, but frost also. Just have them use the back of a spoon instead of a knife.
5. Bake a treat (like the cookies above) and deliver them to a few of your neighbors.
6. Go caroling. While you’re delivering the cookies to your neighbors sing them a little song. It might put your family a little out of their comfort zone, but it a great opportunity for your family to do something hard together. And it will provide a lot of laughs.
7. Make gingerbread houses. This is one of our favorite holiday traditions. Grandma, grandpa, aunts, uncles and cousins alike. Our children look forward to it every year. Need the perfect Cement Frosting for your houses? This recipe works every time.
To switch things up a bit. Put the names of different buildings into a hat and let everyone choose what it is they are going to make. For example. Town hall, post office, grocery store (general store), church, house, etc. What ever you pick is what you make. When everyone is done you will have made your own little town. You can even get a cloth, or big board and put everything on display. Once everyone is done with their buildings, help make roads and street signs. Don’t forget the trees. Sometimes it is hard for people to think of something to do. This will help give some structure and guidelines.
1lb. powdered sugar
3 Egg Whites
1/2 tsp Cream of Tartar
Add all together and beat on medium high speed for 7-9 minutes. I always beat for 9 minutes. Put it into a piping bag (or a ziplock will work), snip the end to make a tip, and start decorating.
This year there we had 8 people making houses. I made 4 batches of the frosting. You don’t have to make each batch separately. I put the ingredients for all four batches in together.
8. Write letters to Santa. It’s not too late. Drop them off at your local mall.
9. Make Rice Krispie Treats, or popcorn balls. Add crushed pieces of candy cane to make them festive.
10. Make ornaments for the birds. Simple sugar cookies will work. Before you bake them, take a straw and put a little hole toward the top. Make sure it is big enough to not close up when they bake. Over-bake them so they are brown and crispy. String a thread through the hole and let the kids hang them outside in your trees. Be sure you put them by a window so your kids can watch the birds eat. We like to spread ours with peanut butter once they cool. The birds love it. You could also pick up some pinecones from outside and cover those in peanut butter, then hang them. If you have birdseed lying around, roll the peanut butter cones in seeds before you hang them.
11. Have a little outside snow party. Bundle up and sit on the porch and drink hot chocolate.
12. Have a hot chocolate party. Make a few different types of hot chocolate and let everyone decide what they want to put in theirs. Candy canes, shaved chocolate pieces, sprinkles, mint extract, whipped cream. The possibilities are endless.
13. Ask the kids to collect all the toys they don’t like or play with any more. Donate them to kids in need. Take the kids with you to make the donation. It will make a big impression on them. This will also help un-clutter your house. You can also do a Sub for Santa and provide Christmas for another family.
14. Visit the senior citizens center or local hospital and sing to the patients. Be sure you call first to find out what their policies are.
15. Turn on some holiday music and play Freeze Dance. You kids will love it. You control the music, when you turn it on, your kids dance around the room however they want. When you stop the music they have to freeze and stay in the position. Have everyone look around and laugh as they look at the silly faces and positions everyone has found themselves in. It doesn’t matter the age, all kids “feel” music and will move with it. Our kids could play this for hours. You can get active also. Instead of sitting while they play. Get up and dance with them.
16. Head to your local library and check out a bunch of holiday books. Read a different one each night before bed. Or, sit down for a little read-a-thon and read all of them at one time. This could be a great Christmas Eve tradition. Don’t forget the popcorn and hot chocolate. This is also a fun way to teach your kids about other traditions and Holiday celebrations.
17. Help your kids make homemade gifts for the family. It doesn’t have to be fancy. Let them get creative.
18. Don’t want to make the gifts. Take each of the kids to the mall for their own little shopping trip. Or better yet, take them to the dollar store and let them shop for family members. They can choose what ever they want and you don’t have to tell them no because it is too expensive.
19. When it snows, build a snowman. Go sledding. Make snow angels.
20. Make Rice Krispie Treat Trees. Make regular rice krispie treats but add some green food coloring to the melted marshmallow. Add the crisp cereal and spread evenly in a 9×13 inch pan. While they are still warm, use a tree shaped cookie cutter to cut out the trees. Have some little candies like M&M’s ready and let the kids decorate the trees.
WHAT FUN ACTIVITIES DO YOU HAVE PLANNED WHILE YOUR KIDS ARE OUT OF SCHOOL?