5 Holiday Traditions that are great for kids!
Have I mentioned how much I love having little kids this time of year? This year has been one of the best of all, simply because they understand a lot more and truly appreciate the holiday season. I’m sure you all can agree that these moments with little ones are fleeting, and trying to keep the magic alive just a little bit longer is a lot of pressure. I’ve got some fun things I like to do with my boys every year that I wanted to share with you. I will do just about anything to see those big blue beautiful eyes experience the magic and wonder of this season. These holiday traditions great for kids are fun for the whole family, don’t cost much, and your kids are bound to love them!
- Polar Express Hot Chocolate- Every year I make our famous Polar Express hot chocolate. I make this only three times that month (because it’s pretty heavy) but it is a hit every time. Once on the first Sunday of December, on our “Polar Express” Day (will talk about that below), and again on the Sunday before Christmas. If I were to imagine what the Polar Express hot chocolate tasted like, “as thick and rich as melted chocolate bars,” than this would be it. I’ve shared the recipe below.
2. Our not so naughty elf on the shelf- Okay, I realize the Elf on the Shelf has been around for a while, and it’s really nothing new. BUT It always stressed me out seeing all of the naughty things my friends elves would do in their house. I mean, who really wants to clean up after an elf toilet papered your Christmas tree? So, the past couple years our elf has occasionally (as long as they do their chores) brought them goodies from the North Pole. When I say “goodies,” I don’t mean teeth rotting candy or sweets. I mean fun crafts, coloring books, and games.
Being indoors all winter is rough this time of year, so having fun things on hand that’ll keep them busy and their brains engaged is always a good idea for me. They are all purchased at the Dollar Store, so very little money goes into it, and they love getting surprises! Especially after a long day at school. Our favorite is painting ornaments and coloring Christmas bags (what they are doing here.) It’s something we can all do together, and a lot better than allowing them to watch TV.
Some fun things our elf has or will bring them this year:
- Advent Calendar
- Holiday Decorations to help decorate the house
- Pen and Stationary to make their Christmas lists
- Paint your own Ornaments
- Holiday bags to color
- Mini mugs (pictured above) for hot chocolate
- Christmas Cookie Cutters
- Coloring books
- Snow paint
- Play dough
3. The Polar Express- Now this is probably one of our all time favorite family holiday traditions. One morning I wake up early and bring all of our dining room chairs into the living room. I tie them all together with ribbons, and line them up in a row like a train. Then my husband runs upstairs to grab the boys while I play the Polar Express soundtrack and get their Santa bells out. We hand them each a bell, a gold ticket, and ask then to climb aboard. The ear to ear smiles, and the giggles we get every year is pure magic. Probably one of my favorite traditions of all time! During the “Hot Chocolate” song, we bring them out their favorite Polar Express Hot Chocolate and do a little dance.
4. Holiday Tour Bus- Usually the week before Christmas, we put a ticket under our boys pillows. (As the days get closer to Christmas, they start checking under their pillows every night) On the night they find their ticket, we catch a ride on the “Holiday Tour Bus,” aka our SUV. We go around town in our pajamas and stop by our favorite places for holiday lights while listening to Christmas tunes.
5. The 12 days of Christmas- Every year we pick a family to do the 12 days of Christmas for. Every night we bring them some kind of holiday treat, game, book, movie, craft, etc; along with a note. It is absolutely hilarious seeing the kids get so excited to drop it off, and try to hide so the family doesn’t see us. One year we kept almost getting caught, so we went stealth mode and wore all black with hoodies and war paint on our cheeks. It’s a great way to teach your kids the spirit of giving as well.
Now, we have tons of other family traditions (ie sugar cookies for Santa on Christmas eve, Temple Square, Polar Express Train (the actual train ride) etc. These are just some traditions we have started on our own and have loved doing for our family.
I hope you liked reading about our family traditions. Now, what are YOUR family traditions you do every year? Leave a comment below!