Well, folks, we are now in a countdown to Christmas. That festive time when we eat more, buy copious amounts of alcohol, and see (too much) of the family. In order to have a stress-free, well-planned Christmas, I have done the work for you with a guide on how to plan for Christmas in September, October, November and December. Follow the timeline and many tips for success. This post is more about finding inventive ways to enjoy Christmas with the children, so you can all have fun.
How to plan for Christmas
If you have been enthusiastically booking activities, the budget may now be blown, and you could be tired even thinking about all the travel. As anxiety seeps in as you worry about fitting in chores and cooking, take a deep breath. This is where your Family Christmas Planner comes into play. If you don’t have one yet, no need to panic. Get you copy here, follow the guide and you will be well on the way to being prepared for next year.
Creative ways to hide Christmas presents
This is one for the adults. Christmas presents often get bought in advance and it is easy to run out of inventive places to hide them from peering eyes. We want them to be a surprise on Christmas Day so it’s time we thought of a few more inventive places to hide presents. But remember where you put them! Wouldn’t it be awful not being able to find them when it came to wrapping presents? Keep a list of hiding places on your phone.
Ten inventive places to hide presents
- Under the bed
- At their grandparents
- In suitcases
- In the washing machine
- In the boot of the car
- In plain sight – e.g. bath products can stand behind others in the bathroom
- Under the sink, behind cleaning products
- In your chest of drawers – for smaller presents
- In filing boxes – take out some of the admin and replace it with a present
- In high-up food cupboards
North Pole breakfast
A great way to start the family Christmas celebrations is with a North Pole breakfast. This is a special Christmas breakfast that your Scout Elf is involved in. Whether or not your Elf hosts breakfast or you and your family invite your Elf to a big feast is up to you. Even though you have to do the actual cooking, you can purchase a party pack to go with the breakfast table along with your Elf.
I prefer to celebrate this event on Christmas Eve. This is the last day that Elf will be with you so why not celebrate with a North Pole breakfast? The breakfast needs to consist of food the Elves may eat in the North Pole. Think marshmallows for snow and chocolate coloured raisins for reindeer poo. Get ready for overly excited children on a sugar high so have some physical activities ready for them after they have eaten.
Six ideas for your North Pole breakfast
- Pancakes decorated with squirty cream and chocolate covered raisons to make Sant’a face
- Hot chocolate with marshmallows
- Waffles in heart shapes – after all, Elf loves us and we love Elf
- Cookies in the centre of the table, put together to create a Christmas tree
- Porridge with chopped fruit on top in festive themes
- A fruit smoothie in a jar with Christmas wrapping paper glued around it
- Milk in case Santa comes to take a look
- Chop up some raw veg, just in case the reindeer stop for a rest. If they don’t eat it, your children can instead. To balance out the sugar.
Don’t forget to decorate the table first – use a festive tablecloth, sprinkle with candy canes, marshmallows, raisons, chocolate drops and more. You can take a cake stand and build up a creative Christmas tree of marshmallows for a 3D effect. Remember to sit Elf in the middle. After all, he is the host and has made this feast for your children to discover in the morning.
Christmas Eve fun for kids
If you are looking for inventive ways to enjoy Christmas with Children, then a Christmas walk is just the answer. Your child is full of sugar after breakfast and this is an activity that can’t get more frugal than free, now can it? Winter can be beautiful with crisp air and the prospect of snow. You could hunt the best-decorated house or walk to an inviting coffee shop. With the help of the Ordnance Survey, you can find an exciting walk, one that is new to your family.
Christmas traditions for teenagers
Having a tween or a teenager in the house can be a challenge. They have outgrown the activities you used to do with them, want to spend more time with friends, and are going through puberty. So as a parent, you need to approach Christmas slightly differently. Maybe you won’t be leaving out cookies and milk for Santa but there are lots of activities that you can enjoy together, that will not promote a teenage meltdown.
If your tween or teenager has pocket money, they may enjoy the opportunity to spend it. Take them to your local market with a friend or go a little further field. Check this guide for the best UK markets this Christmas. Your teenager will enjoy the freedom of being able to roam and choose what they spend their money on and you will have a little time to yourself to buy those small remaining presents.
It can be hard to get a teenager involved in anything and cooking is no exception but bear in mind it’s a skill they will need in the not-too-distant future. Decide with your child what they would like to bake, and it could become a new tradition for your family. Baking is always a good option as there are lots of choices that do not take too much time or cause too much stress. The plus side for your teen is that they get to eat it after! This is definitely an inventive way to enjoy Christmas with children, no matter what their age.
Arts and Crafts for the family
Christmas is a great time to do some arts and crafts with your family. Even if it is just once a year. There is such a range to choose from that its best to look at options depending on age. Here is a selection for children up to junior school. As the vast majority of items needed can be found at home, they will not be too expensive to make.
For older children, there are some fantastic craft ideas that they can either do with you or with one of their friends. It is a great way for budding teenagers to express their creativity. Of course, if your teen does not want to create from scratch, there are options with kits and templates.
Elf on a shelf
As it approaches bedtime on Christmas Eve, it is time to say goodbye to ‘Elf on a shelf’, tidy up the kitchen and get ready for bed. All children, no matter how old they are will be excited about the day ahead. Christmas Eve was full of rich activities and they are now content and tired. One last inventive way to enjoy Christmas with your children before they fall asleep is to hang the stockings ready to be filled with presents.
Memories created last forever so it is important to have a relaxed and fulfilling Christmas. Using your Family Christmas Planner, you will be super organised, not stressed, will not overspend and most importantly will enjoy Christmas with your family. As it approaches the festive season, I wish you all a relaxed and happy merry Christmas.