Not long now! The tree’s up, the shopping almost done, the big day is nearly here....
And the kids are climbing the walls!
High on anticipation, advent calendar chocolate and non-stop party food, children are reaching fever pitch! Schools are closing up for Christmas break leaving parents with the challenge of keeping their brood of over-excited Duracell bunnies entertained right up until the big day.
Here are three festive ideas which will help keep the whole family busy in the week before Christmas.
Leyla from ThisDayILove.com loves making reindeer food with her daughters. It’s a super simple idea, it’s very low cost and is sure to add a moment of magic to Christmas Eve.
Here's how Leyla does it:
"Every Christmas Eve the girls sprinkle reindeer food outside to help Father Christmas find our house and for the reindeer to have something to eat whilst they wait for Father Christmas to deliver the girls' presents. Reindeer food therefore has to have several components:
1. Something for the reindeer to eat
2. Something to help guide Father Christmas to our house
3. Snow [it is Christmas after all]
Firstly, make up some indoor snow.
Indoor snow is really easy to make. In a bowl mix 2 cups cornflower, one third a cup of vegetable oil and add a good sprinkle of glitter. Mix really well.
The texture is amazingly like snow. It has a crunch to it like snow does when you squish it for snowballs and the glitter adds an element of magic to it. My girls were hooked and spent most of the afternoon playing with it.
Next, add oats, this is the food for the reindeer.
Lastly, add glitter. The moonlight makes the glitter sparkle so that Father Christmas can find our house. You can use any colour glitter you like, we use red as the girls know Father Christmas likes red.
You can adjust the quantities to suit, we only use a few teaspoons as we do not need much. Once made we keep in a sealed container ready for Christmas Eve.
On Christmas Eve the girls love to sprinkle the reindeer food outside ready for Father Christmas. It has become a tradition like leaving the special key outside. Both girls are now getting very excited now the reindeer food is made!"
Image credit: Food.com
Sabina from DeepInMummyMatters.com and her family love creating their own decorations to add a special personal touch to their family Christmas.
This year they made some gorgeous wicker hearts and combined a lovely piece of family crafting with a winter treasure hunt in the woods.
Here’s how Sabina did it:
1. Buy a wicker heart to attach your decorations to; ours was £9.88 from a local craft shop.
2. Collect some decorations for the heart. We went with bells and ribbons for a Christmassy look.
3. Enjoy a family walk in the woods to collect the pine cones to decorate your heart. We found a few in different shapes and sizes.
4. Leave the pine cones on a radiator overnight so they open fully.
5. The next stage is to dab the pine cones with glue and decorate them however you wish. We decided to sprinkle them in glitter.
6. Now it’s time to add the decorations to your heart. Tip: use fine wire to attach the pine cones.
Whether you’re known for your artistic abilities or not, kids love creating crafty works of art and a rag wreath is something everyone can do without too much stress involved! It’s something that kids can get stuck into with minimum supervision so it gives them a real sense of achievement (and gives mums and dads the option of enjoying a glass of mulled wine at the same time!)
The end result is a really lovely decoration suggested by Emma from EmmaAnd3.com which will survive Christmas and can be brought out each year for some nostalgic festive moments.
Here’s how Emma and her family made theirs:
1. Buy a copper wreath frame, mine was under £3 for two on eBay with free delivery. I got 10inch but would like to do a bigger one now too!
2. Buy (or use material from home, old pillowcase etc.) material. I bought the tartan fat squares from Hobby Craft for just £7. It is good to have different colours of materials, I used five different tartan patterns but you could use whatever colours you want.
3. Cut strips about 2cm wide by 10cm. I used half the material doing this. I simply ripped it in half and then got Erin cutting strips. Using tartan was a clever idea here as it has lines which made it easy for Erin to cut and follow.
4. Knot each strip around the copper frame. I started with the inside as it seemed easier. Every so often I turned the frame over just so my knots were not all facing the same way. This helped puff it out (good technical terms there!). Make sure you use a strip from each pile in a pattern to make the wreath look symmetrical.
5. Push the rag knots close together to give it fullness.
6. Tie a piece of string or ribbon and then hand it up. It is such a simple craft and looks really effective.