I think that Christmas Traditions can start even when children are really young and it’s never too early! I will share the things I have done when my kids were little. But a little background on Christmas for me growing up.
Our own family Christmas Traditions
Growing up, I looked forward to Christmas. I realize that those traditions drive my excitement every year as I prepare for Christmas yearly with my littles. It was the one day a year the family would all get together, and our traditions were so much fun.
We’d gather for a really good lunch, we’re talking crab legs & prime rib kind of lunch! While relaxing, my Uncle Nelson would sneak away when no one (well by no one I mean the little kids) watching. Then, he’d dress up as Santa Clause.
For a very long time, most of the kids hey had no idea that he was Santa. We’d let him come from the outside of the house, ringing his bells saying “Ho, ho, ho”! And the older kids would act super excited and scream, “Santa’s here!” Then, he’d call each kid by name, one by one, with a present for them, and have them sit on his lap. The kids loved waiting for their name to be called, crossing their fingers that they were on the “nice list”.
After Santa’s visit, all the kids picked a spot to sit, and the adults would pass out presents. Once everyone got their presents, we would say “ready set go” and all the children would have at it. It was chaotic and the house was a mess, but the memory of how much fun it was will never fade.
We’d usually play games too, like Candy Cane Relay Races, Scavenger Hunts, and Dance offs. We would also play the White Elephant game as a family! The funniest part of that game was that my Granny would give a gift no one really wanted (like Toilet Paper). But what we learned over time was she would hide money in those “not so great” gifts to trick us.
Then and Now: Christmas
Nowadays, a couple of us have moved and most of the kids are bigger and living their own lives. So, I promised myself I would start my own traditions now that I have my own little family. I knew that I would do whatever it took, even if we weren’t going to have huge family parties.
Because the girls are still younger, there isn’t a lot that I could do. But I did want to include fun little things that Mila is old enough to do. The first thing I got was this countdown calendar. It’s a “how many sleeps till Santa” countdown calendar. She can each day cross it out to see how much more nights before Santa comes. She doesn’t quite get the countdown part but at this point, she knows we’re almost at the end!
Unfortunately, I got this at Target and last time I checked, they no longer sell it. But I found something similar!
We also did an Ugly Christmas Sweater cookie decorating activity. AJ and Mila did it together. It was fairly easy because the cookies are already made, and it doesn’t overwhelm young children. Plus it will look good no matter how they decorate it. You can get a cookie kit like this on Amazon.
We also baked those ready-made cookies from Pillsbury that are store-bought frozen. This year, we did Elf ones! She had lots of fun pulling them apart and watching them bake.
I definitely have more that I already have in mind next year, but for now, that is all. What other ideas for traditions for little ones? Please share your ideas with me in the comments.
Related post: Advent Calendar Activity Ideas with Free Printable
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Thank you for reading! Merry Christmas! XOXO