Choose A Simple Way to Slow Down And Enjoy The Holiday With The Kids.

Easy Fun Ideas To Add To The Memory Of The Holidays.

By Melissa Shrader Editor/Publisher Fort Collins Macaroni Kid December 10, 2017

What has happened to the Christmas's of our childhood? Sure we thought it went by so fast and we wished it would linger a bit longer but as I grow older and have kids of my own I realize just how fast the holidays really go. Becoming an adult with kids creates the urge to make everything "perfect". Let me ask - "What is your idea of a perfect holiday?" "Would your child have the same vision of a "perfect" holiday?" Why not just relax and enjoy the time we have with our kids doing simple things to create the "perfect" holiday. I know my favorite times were family times. That's really what I remember. The intimate things like making cookies for friends and family for gifts and for Santa's plate. I loved getting the glass of milk and feeling proud of the cookies I baked for Santa. We would drive around and look at Christmas lights. Simple family memories. Sure the kids want that big toy of the season but what will they remember years from now? consider these simple ways (only choose a few) do enjoy a more simple less stressful Christmas that your kids will love and will remember for years to come. 

One last memory that may sound silly. When I was a kid growing up on the farm we had some slim times. One year we didn't have a tree. My mom, the creative spirit that she is, went out and found the biggest tumbleweed, painted it gold, and decorated it with painted cotton balls. She then put buttons and such on the cotton balls to create little creatures out of them. Then we as a family  popped popcorn and strung up cranberries and popcorn on a string and laced it though the branches of the "tree". Weirdly enough it was one of the best Christmas's I remember. I also remember the gifts I got that year. My dad got a pair of slippers, mom a robe, and I got the stuffed squirrel I saw at a craft fair months earlier. I still have that squirrel. 

Make hot cocoa with whip cream or marshmallows and watch a holiday movie.

Play a game. Make up something in the house or driving around when holiday shopping. You can do the traditional "Pick a gift and guess what's inside" or "Find the Pickle on the Tree". While driving you can play the "License plate game" which is more fun as there are families from other states in to spend the holidays so there will be many different plates to see. Eye Spy is always great. You can look for a snowman or a Santa etc. The alphabet game. Pick a letter and have them look for it on signs. Animal name game - one person names animal and another person has to name an animal that begins with the last letter of the previous animal. 

Have nightly story time next to your Christmas tree. Check out my list of books to choose from. 

Teach your kids how to wrap presents -- or recruit them help with the holiday cards.

Celebrate the 12 Days of Christmas together with a simple holiday activity each day. We do a craft a day. We choose a wall or a ledge in the house to decorate with the creations we make. 

Create a paper chain garland -- great way to use all those small strips of left over wrapping paper or from the crafts.

Watch Santa's reindeer online. 

Take an evening walk or ride and enjoy the lights in your area.

Set aside the Christmas cards you receive and spend an evening opening them together.

We have a dinner with the grandparents one night and do it by candlelight one night. We do Christmas eve but  winter solstice would be great and you could discuss why its a special day like summer solstice. Discuss why we do daylight savings etc. for bigger kids and for littles you can do finger shadow puppets! 

Build a super easy (and healthy) gingerbread house. 

Roll up your socks and have an indoor snowball fight! Just make sure the socks you choose aren't sports socks and are soft not hard.