Now, I understand that we’re not even through Thanksgiving yet (though we’re REALLY close) but I like to get this post up with a few days cushion just in case someone reads it and wants to attempt it for this year. Also, it is very picture heavy. If you’d just like my list of ideas feel free to scroll through to the end where I have a complete list. Ok… on with the show!
This was our 25 days of Christmas basket from our first year. It is quite possibly my favorite family Christmas tradition so far because it takes the craziness of the holidays and slows everything down making you enjoy the season, even if just for a few minutes, every day of December. I came across the idea a few years ago on Pinterest (Here) and threw it together December 1st after the kids went to bed.
Each day my kidos take turns opening one of the numbered envelopes/packages. The wrapped ‘gifts’ are a little something new (Don’t panic, I hit up the Dollar Tree and, now that I plan ahead a bit, the after Christmas clearance sales you can find just about everywhere.). All of the envelopes are experiences. We then ‘do’ whatever we were told and the kids can not wait to open the numbered package each day!
It does take a little while to organize and get together mostly because I have to spend some time making sure each of the experiences work with a certain day. For example, one of them is attending our local Christmas parade which obviously only happens on one day, so that one is set in stone. All of the others I just fill in wherever they fit.
Some of our favorites from past years… Cookie Baking and Decorating
Making Christmas Crafts
Write letters to Santa…
Receive new Christmas coloring books.
Visit our local coffee shop for special Christmas drinks!
Watch Santa arrive at our local Christmas parade!
Decorate our Christmas tree (the tree with lights goes up the day after Thanksgiving but putting the decorations on is one of our activities)
And have a surprise (bedtime) ride on the minivan express!!!
I printed these ‘tickets’ on some gold paper I found at Wal-Mart and put them on their pillows right before bed. They find them when they climb into bed and we hurry into the car, ‘hot’ cocoa in hand, to drive around listening to Christmas music and take in everyone’s Christmas decorations! This one is definitely a favorite!
Those are just some of our favorites. But let the record show, with the first utterances of Christmas my kids begin asking if we are going to do 25 Days of Christmas each year. Like I said, it does take a bit of time to put together but the memories we make are very worth it in my opinion. Here’s the list!
* Make Christmas Ornaments
*Attend a Christmas Parade
*Decorate the Tree
*Participate In/Attend the School Holiday Concert
*Special Christmas Drinks at a Coffee Shop
*Christmas Shopping (for family and Toys for Tots)
*Minivan Express (Christmas Scavenger Hunt)
*Watch Christmas Specials on TV or DVD (we usually do 2-3 of these)
*Write Letters to Santa
*Put together shoe boxes for Operation Christmas Child
*Collect toys to donate to Goodwill
*Attend a large light display or holiday event at a local amusement park. This year we’re going to visit Hersheypark’s Christmas Candy Lane!!! Shhh, It’s a surprise! But I’ll be writing a whole post about our experience once we get back (look for it the week after Thanksgiving). We can’t wait to surprise the kids with this one. 🙂
*Christmas Eve Box (usually our Elf on the Shelf leaves this with a note on Christmas Eve and ours contains a book telling the biblical account of Christmas)
* New Christmas Coloring Books
* New Christmas Storybooks
* Christmas Crafts (we have usually 3 or 4 that I pick up the year prior after Christmas on clearance but check the Target $1 bins and the Dollar Tree)
* Christmas ‘Play Packs’ (also $1 at Target/Dollar Tree)
* Book/Nativity Set to be played with for the month of December
If you have any questions or more ideas please leave a comment, I’d love to get some new ideas to stash away for next year! Feel free to check my 25 Days of Christmas Pinterest board to see some of these ideas and many more. I’m also planning to share some of our 25 Days of Christmas activities on our Facebook page so ‘like’ us and join in on the fun!
I hope your family enjoys this tradition as much as we do!