The month of December is always enjoyable for me, even as an adult. I love seeing the excitement the holiday season brings my kids, too, as we spend time together making memories and having fun. Here are ten family Christmas activities we enjoy as a family (or plan to try this year for this first time!):
10 Family Christmas Activities
Go on a holiday lights drive.
We put up some Christmas lights at our home, but they are pretty tame. Spend one evening driving around in the car, with the Christmas music turned up and check out the Christmas lights displayed around your town and nearby neighborhoods. We live near our city’s downtown, and in front of the courthouse is where Santa comes to visit every holiday season. The front lawn has a sleigh with reindeer, a wooden Santa and Mrs. Claus, and Santa’s house – a small red house complete with a mailbox out front to send Santa Christmas wish lists. The kids love driving past it, and in a couple weeks, we’ll go back and actually visit Santa!
Enjoy Christmas classics from your very own home.
Set aside a few evenings during the season and let different members of the family choose a Christmas movie or TV show such as A Charlie Brown Christmas, Frosty the Snowman or Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer. Sip some hot cocoa or eat some buttery popcorn and enjoy.
Play in the snow.
If the area of the country where you live has white Christmases, this idea is a solid one. Get outdoors and play! Bundle up and pull out the sleds or make some snow forts! Get a carrot stick and a hat and make a snowman! If possible, your family could even go ice skating. The snowy days really are magical if you can get outside and enjoy the weather.
Read Christmas stories.
We have a lot of Christmas books that my children adore. Their favorite is Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer – they really like the Abominable Snow Monster!
If you don’t have Christmas books at home, the library is also stocked with Christmas books and, obviously, they are free! Help kids grow their love of reading by encouraging them to read books they enjoy.
Bake Christmas cookies.
Gingerbread men! Sugar cookies! Peanut butter blossoms! Children of all ages can help out in the kitchen on “cookie day.” Younger kids can help add pre-measured ingredients, stir the dough and decorate the cookies. Let your kids top the cookies with icing, sprinkles and other sugary treats. Christmas cookies are one of many gift ideas to save money on Christmas, too.
Send Christmas cards.
This time of the year, many of us love to send out Christmas cards to our friends and family. Encourage your kids draw pictures to include with the card, or help you put stamps on the envelopes and take them out to your mailbox.
Decorate a gingerbread house.
You can find templates online to help guide you to build a gingerbread house from scratch – or most stores have pre-baked kits for sale if that’s more your cup of cocoa. Use a variety of icing colors, hard candies and licorice to build a fun, bright and delicious-looking gingerbread house.
Make homemade hot cocoa.
To make enough for 12 servings:
Combine 1 cup sugar, 1 cup unsweetened cocoa powder, ½ cup mini semisweet chocolate chips and ½ teaspoon salt. Mix well. Warm 8 ounces of milk for each cup of hot cocoa. Add 2 to 3 tablespoons of the mix into each cup of milk. Top with whipped cream or marshmallows or serve with a candy cane. If you really want to make it a special event, make your own cup to toast the holidays each year.
Celebrate Christmas past.
Pull out photographs of past holidays and see what mom and dad looked like as kids, or even just peruse pictures from a year or two ago. If you have videos from Christmas, watch those, too. You can even start a memory box with a note from each family member with their Christmas wish for the next year and read those together.
Make paper snowflakes.
It’s time to get crafty! While some of us may dream of a white Christmas, the weather doesn’t always cooperate. Paper snowflakes are easy to make and a great way to add some white to your Christmas trees. Once you complete your snowflakes, you can decorate them with glitter or whatever your creative little one desires. This will give your Christmas tree a homey touch.