Monday, December 7, 2015

Making Christmas Magical: 12 Days of Christmas activities for families

I am not one of those moms who usually goes "all out" on holidays. I have lots of good intentions, but very little follow through. But this year is going to be different! I wanted to find some activities that didn't require any specialty-store ingredients and required little prep time. Basically, I wanted something for my preschooler & first grader to do in the days leading up to Christmas--especially those days when there's no school!

I originally saw this idea HERE on, but I ended up coming up with some new days of my own and taking/deleting some activities the site suggested. I found a ton of ideas on pinterest (so if some of the crafts or activities don't immediately make sense, just type them in the search bar on pinterest) and I especially loved all the paper plate crafts I found on this site .

The ideas printed on each card are suggestions of things my kids and I can do, but I'm not expecting to get them all done. We'll just pick and choose what works best for us. Also, I hate the idea of constantly having to get online to look for recipes/craft ideas so I included pictures of the crafts and recipes right on the cards. And lastly, there's not right or wrong order for these 12 days! I might let my kids pick a card each day or I'll pick one that fits with whatever else we have that day.

Simple, fun ideas for everyday moms and kids.
This would even make a cute neighbor gift! 

These print on a regular sheet of printer paper or cardstock. Just cut down the middle after printing. Besides the cards, you'll need basic art supplies and a stack of cheap paper plates if you're doing the paper plate crafts. I also own most of the videos/books suggested but you should be able to find them at your local library and on netflix/amazon prime video.

Here are some of our activities for Mr. Grinch Day. We invited two neighbor friends to join us today. We started by reading How the Grinch Stole Christmas by Dr. Seuss. Then, we made our a Grinch craft out of paper plates.
 Next, the kids helped me bake "grinch cookies" They each took turns putting the ingredients into the bowl. They especially loved seeing the dough turn green. For my favorite chocolate chip cookie recipe, go HERE
 While the cookies were baking I turned on the classic, cartoon version of How the Grinch Stole Christmas. When the movie was over I called them over to the table for their snack. The picture of the cookies looks washed out, but trust me, with 10 drops of green food coloring, they were plenty green!

 For dinner that night I made "grinch rolls" However, dying the roll dough didn't make them green...more like a white and green marble...which the kids still thought was cool. Click HERE for my tried and true roll recipe.
 We also ate "Who Stew" aka Chili. I told my kids this is what the Who's from Whoville eat for dinner rather than saying the stew was made out of Who's (yuck!) And click HERE for our all time favorite chili recipe.

 This was a easy, fun day and my kids can't wait for us to do another activity day soon!
And that's the beauty of these "days" If you get overwhelmed easily, like I do, spread the days out so you're not necessarily doing one every day for 12 straight days. Choose what works best for your family.
 To download the GRINCH & NATIVITY DAY, click HERE
To download the AROUND THE WORLD and REINDEER DAY, click HERE
Just a side note on this day: you might be wondering why the heck my kids will learn how to say merry Christmas in Indonesian. My in-laws served a mission there for our church so Indonesia is regularly talked about at our house.
To download the St.NICHOLAS DAY and CHRISTMAS TREE DAY, click HERE
To download CANDY CANE DAY and ELF DAY, click HERE
To download the FROSTY DAY and GINGERBREAD DAY, click HERE

These printables are for personal use only. Please don't use them commercially in any form.

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