After watching last night’s Rockafeller Tree Lighting Special on tv, I couldn’t help but think, “Gee, I live right here, I should probably go to that some time,” and “Holy crap, Christmas time is here!” With Christmas only 3 weeks away, I realized I have a million things I should be doing, rather than sitting there and watching Mariah Carey belt out the same ole’ tune. Don’t get me wrong, that same ole’ song is actually one of my favorite Christmas songs, but the fact that I haven’t come up with a list for Brooke and I to send to family, haven’t bought one gift, haven’t written any holiday cards, haven’t planned a get together with friends, haven’t planned anything for Bret and my mini getaway, and have not set up an ounce of Christmas cheer around here, it is just a reminder to get into gear. With this long list of things I want to get done, I have to remember that it is the little things that make this season so special. It’s the smiles that I can bring to Brooke’s face, and the magical moments I can bring to her and others, that build the memories that can last a lifetime. I decided to put together a list of things that you can do for, or with, your child, that exudes the holiday spirit, and is sure to bring a smile to their face.
6 Fun Things To Do During the Holidays That Will Make Your Kids Flip
1. Receive an official letter from Santa from the North Pole
Yes, the North Pole is a real place (in Alaska), and this time of year, those that live there make the most of their residence in Santa’s hometown. Some of the people (elves?) that live there have set it up so you can order a letter from Santa (which includes a bunch of other goodies as well), and they will mail it to your youngin’ from the North Pole (with a genuine North Pole postmark). Imagine the excitement your lil’ ones will feel receiving mail not only from the North Pole, but from Santa! Also, if you’d like to make your child beam with pride, you can always have an Official Nice List Certificate mailed to them from the North Pole as well.
We have done this for the past few years, and my daughter absolutely gets a kick out of it. As a matter of fact, we received our “email from Santa” yesterday, that contained a link to Brooke’s personalized video from Santa. As she sat there on my lap, mouth open, with the biggest smile ever, you know it is totally worth it to put together. It really didn’t take very long to customize, and it was free. They do have upgraded packages that cost money, but the free one is perfect for our needs.
I just came across this, this Christmas, where you can have your family turned into lego people. If your kid loves legos, then they will think this is totally hilarious. It is quick and easy to customize each person in your family into a lego person, and you have a free postcard you can send out to others during the holidays. This is ours:
4. Visit Santa
Whether it is that I was terrified of mall Santas when I was a kid, or now I am just terrified of the lines that surrounds him, I have yet to do this with Brooke. You know what though, now that I have been enlightened to the fact that there is an express line at Macy’s Santaland, I think this might just have to be the year. I was up there on the 8th floor of Macy’s, scooping up all my Black Friday deals, and saw the whole get up. It is really quite cute, and I hear that they have a lot of amazing things to check out in Santaland (if you are willing to wait hours in line). Apparently with the express pass, you get to see some of Santaland, and the most you’ll wait is 15 minutes. Hallelujah! Plus, you can make an afternoon of it, by checking out the toys they have set up surrounding Santaland, stroll by the famous 34th Street window displays, and grab lunch nearby (Hello Koreatown!).
If you are not in NYC, I’m sure any mall should have a Santa, or you can do what we did a couple years back (and will do on Saturday), and attend a Breakfast with Santa. You can get some breakfast, your kid gets to sit on Santa’s lap, and the line is limited to just those in attendance.
5. Write or email Santa a letter (for a good cause)
Some kids love the feeling that they are in control of their destiny (or in this case, what they get for Christmas), so writing a letter to the man in red might just make their day. If this is your little one, then you can have them write Santa a letter (or if you have a tech savvy child, have them email Santa), and turn it in at a Macy’s location. Macy’s has teamed up with the Make-A-Wish Foundation, and for each letter/email that Macy’s receives, they will donate $1 to this organization, up to 1 million dollars! This activity is not only fun for the kiddies, but it helps out a tremendous organization. Plus, if you want to go all out, you can pair this up with #1 on this list, and your child will believe it is in response to this letter. Winning!
6. Check out a Candy Cane Lane type street in your neighborhood
In most areas, no matter where you live, there is usually a street (or few), where all the houses deck out their front yards with over-the-top Christmas decorations. Here in the tri-state area it is Dyker Heights in Brooklyn. Back home in California it was Candy Cane Lane. Wherever you are, checking out these streets/neighborhoods can really put you in the holiday spirit. We have yet to do Dyker Heights, since it is a trek and a half from where we live, and we don’t have a car. Next year we should be getting a car, so we’ll be able to make the trip. I just know Brooke will love it, just by the sheer joy she got last Christmas when we drove down the street in Florida, and grandpa’s neighborhood at a few reindeer and snowmen in their front yards. We’ll just say it wasn’t the most impressive display, so taking her to street decorated to the nines, should blow her mind!
Are there any fun activities that you do with your kids during the holidays?