Category Archives: Christmas

Christmas Lights Scavenger Hunt with Grandchildren

Our little community has a pond. Not a lake. A pond

At Christmas time, the city floats rafts on the pond. On these rafts are Christmas lights in the shape of Christmas trees. (The last couple of years, the city has included other types of Christmas lights on the pond.)

It is gorgeous — especially the lights reflecting on the water.

I wanted to include a picture of the lights on the pond with this post. But, minus five degree weather is not very inviting for an outdoor photography shoot. So, here’s a picture of the pond in the summertime. Isn’t it pretty?

Salem Pond


I’ll leave it up to your imagination to picture in your mind Christmas tree-shaped lights reflecting on the water at night . . .

A nearby city puts up all sorts of light displays in a city park. It is fun to go as a family and drive through the park to see the lights.

So, here’s an idea of an activity that you can do with your grandchildren. Go on a Christmas lights scavenger hunt!

scavenger huntHere is a Christmas Light Scavenger Hunt checklist that you can use.

Print it off and give a copy to each grandchild. As you drive around looking at the lights, your grandchild calls out when she sees one of the things on her list. She then puts a check in the box by that item. (The other grandchildren have to see another light display to be able to check off that item on their own list.)

At the end of your drive, give a prize to the grandchild who was the first person to check off everything — or to the one with the most items checked off.

Give other grandchildren special prizes, too. For instance, give a prize to the person who was first to see lights in the shape of an elf or a teddy bear. See if you can give some sort of prize to every grandchild so that nobody will feel left out.

You could make this scavenger hunt a tradition that you do with your grandchildren every year.

Afterwards, you can go back to your home for some cookies and hot cocoa and to sing a couple of Christmas carols!

 

A Charlie Brown Christmas Coloring Activity

I love the music from the movie A Charlie Brown Christmas. Someday, I’m going to learn how to play the theme song on the piano! (Keyword: someday…)

Until then, I’ll have to satisfy that desire by printing off coloring pages for my grandkids to color. Here are links to 6 coloring pages that you can print off for your grand kiddos. (Click on the picture.)

Invite your grandkids over to watch the movie, eat popcorn, and then color these pages afterwards. (If you did this activity so the parents could go Christmas shopping, they would love you — and the grandkids would love you!)

charlie_brown

dancing_around_tree

snoopy_doghouse

snoopy_star

stockings

tree

Service Star For Grandchildren

starThanksgiving is over and our thoughts are now focusing on Christmas.

Well, if you are into shopping on Black Friday — which really started Thursday on Thanksgiving! — you’ve already been thinking about Christmas.

And if you are like people in my neck of the woods, you might have put up your Christmas lights and decorations before Thanksgiving.

Sigh.

Grandchildren are beyond the moon excited about what Santa will bring them and what they will get for Christmas. And sometimes, parents are beyond the moon worried about all of the cost of Christmas.

But, Christmas really isn’t about what you get. It’s all about giving. Hopefully by now, fellow grandmothers, you have learned that the true happiness of Christmas is in serving others.

It is our responsibility to help our grandchildren learn about service — about thinking of others instead of themselves.

Here’s a simple thing that you can do to help grandchildren focus on service. Print out My Service Star. (This is a yellow colored star. If you want a plain star outline so you can print on yellow card stock, print out My Service Star non-colored). Sit down with your grandchildren and explain how serving others brings true happiness.

There are two pages of this document. One is for doing service for family members and a blank one for doing service to those besides family members. Older grandchildren can choose to do acts of service for others in their neighborhood.

Brainstorm with your grandchildren a list of ideas of acts of service. Write the ideas down on a piece of paper. Then, have  your grandchild put the star in a visible place in his bedroom so it will remind him to do service throughout the Christmas holiday.

When he does an act of service from his idea list, he writes it down on his star. Challenge your grandchild to see if he can fill the star by Christmas Day with acts of service that he has done for others.

Here are some ideas of service that grandchildren could do for their family members.

  • Do the dishes while Mom sits in a comfortable chair listening to Christmas music and reads.
  • Make your brother or sister’s bed.
  • Clean up a little sibling’s toys in the family room
  • Play with a toddler while supper is being fixed.
  • Do the laundry for one week.
  • Fix supper for the family.
  • Give Dad a foot or back rub.
  • Clean the bathroom without being asked.
  • Make cookies for your family.
  • Read a story to a younger sibling.
  • Write a thank you note for a family member and tuck it under their pillow.
  • Clean the kitty’s litter box without being asked.

Ralph Waldo Emerson said, ” Rings and jewels are not gifts but apologies for gifts. The only true gift is a portion of yourself.”

I hope this idea will spark acts of service — not only at Christmas time — but throughout the coming year for you and your grandchildren.

Ho Ho Ho Santa

Are you looking for a fun activity to do with your grandchildren at a family Christmas party? Here’s an idea that is easy for those grandkiddos, inexpensive on grandma’s pocket book, and easy to prepare for. (Isn’t that what life is all about — doing things the easy, cheap way?)

Make this little felt Santa that you can stuff with candy. Here’s what he looks like.

Santa_front



Santa back


Santa bottom


Here is the pattern for the Santa. All you have to do is cut out the pieces of felt. Cut a slit in the back piece. Glue the edges of the front and back together using a hot glue gun.  Don’t glue the bottom of the front and back pieces together.

Glue the bottom piece of felt to the front and back pieces making sure the you glue the boots at the bottom at the same time. Glue on the ‘hair’ and mustache. Add googly eyes and a small red pompom for a nose and your Santa is already for stuffing with candy through the slit in the back. (This Santa pictured here is sewn together. But, for what it’s worth, I think that it would be much faster and easier to hot glue the pieces together. Remember, do it the easy way!)

Or, you could make this Santa and put in stocking stuffers like lip gloss or nail polish or a bracelet and give it to your granddaughters. Or stuff it with a Matchbox car or pocket knife or a whistle for grandsons.

I also made a pattern for a Christmas tree. But, I didn’t have any green felt so I couldn’t make one. (Well, I could have waited to make this post until I got the green felt and made the tree. But, I didn’t want to wait that long.) So, here’s a pattern for a Christmas tree. I think after seeing the Santa that you smart grandmothers out there can figure out how to glue the tree together.

To decorate the tree, you can glue rick rack for a ‘garland’ or use glitter glue. You can glue mini-pompoms on as decorations or sequins or whatever else catches your fancy.

Have a great time making this Santa and Christmas tree with your grandchildren.