Staying Sane: Easy things to do with your kids during the Holidays

OK, it’s Sunday. I usually post a “Staying Sane” piece but this week I’m going to cheat and “borrow” someone else’s terrific idea and add to it. I came across this blog entry and shared it on the Mama In Motion Facebook page. But I think it’s worthy of posting here as well – since we have 2 weeks to go until Christmas, and tensions at this point may be running high for you as a working mother. We all can use any ideas to help stay sane.

Try to take it easy on yourself. Outsource the shopping to your computer and/or Amazon. Do your cards through USPS and they can put them in envelops and stamp and send them for you. If you are like me, we try too hard to do everything for everybody; BUT, I don’t think we need to put pressures on ourselves to be super-women when it comes to providing a good, memorable experience for our children.

I saw the below list (Source:; and so much resonated with me — there a lots of fun things to do with the kids that aren’t huge projects but could create memorable traditions. Take a look and maybe you’ll see something new; I’ve added my thoughts at the bottom. Add yours too!

Thanks for listening –

– Mama K


50 Things To Do With Kids in December:

  1. Go out and look at Christmas lights
  2. Bake cookies
  3. Pick out and put up the Christmas Tree
  4. Decorate the Christmas Tree
  5. Make an Ice Wreath
  6. Make Cinnamon Applesauce and/or Salt Dough ornaments
  7. Make and decorate gingerbread houses
  8. Sing Christmas Songs
  9. Visit Santa
  10. Buy and donate toys for Toys For Tots
  11. Help to wrap presents for friends and family
  12. Act out the Christmas story
  13. Make Reindeer Food
  14. Make homemade Christmas color/glitter play dough (and scent it with peppermint) to give to friends
  15. Make and decorate gingerbread people
  16. Make popcorn and cranberry garland
  17. Go on a sleigh ride
  18. Make paper chains for the Christmas tree
  19. Write a letter to Santa
  20. Watch a holiday movie
  21. Check out holiday books at the library
  22. Leave out shoes for St. Nicholas
  23. Eat Candy Canes
  24. Hang stockings on the mantle or banister
  25. Put out the Nativity Scene
  26. Address and Mail holiday cards
  27. Pick a special family ornament for the year
  28. Make a special plate for Santa’s cookies and the reindeer’s carrots
  29. Go to see The Nutcracker
  30. Go to a holiday parade
  31. Go to a candy store for a holiday treat
  32. Tie bells with ribbons and hang them around the house
  33. Make cards and gifts for teachers
  34. Go to the dollar store and pick gifts for family
  35. Make special cards to send to cousins
  36. Have a Random Acts of Kindness Day(s)
  37. Make cards to send to troops or to bring to a nursing home
  38. Grocery shop just to take to a food bank or donation boxes
  39. Learn a Christmas song on the guitar or piano
  40. Make a present for Santa
  41. Celebrate the Winter Solstice
  42. Make Winter Tea
  43. Make/Put out food for birds and squirrels
  44. Make orange and clove pomanders
  45. Look through favorite Christmas Cards from friends and family from years past
  46. Start a garland or photo album with your own family holiday cards from years past
  47. Prep and freeze a special breakfast for Christmas morning
  48. Make hot chocolate balls
  49. Make snow globes
  50. Do research on holiday traditions around the world and choose one to add to family traditions

Mama K’s additions:

51. Have the kids draw a picture for Santa to leave out on Christmas Eve

52. Have the kids dress in red and/or green on several days leading up to Christmas

53. Make Christmas socks (simpler than shirts) — white socks with red and green dye; who cares what they’ll look like, the kids will probably love them anyway

54. Have your kids draw the present they would like Santa to bring to them

55. Have your kids make cards for their teachers

56. Make home-made hot chocolate and put a candy-cane on the top for them

57. Get red and green ice-cream — strawberry or vanilla (and add food colooring) and mint or vanilla with food coloring)

58. Go to a downtown area where you live and visit office building lobbies and look at their decorations

59. Go ice-skating

60. Get Santa hats and wear yours after work until they go to bed…. while cooking, eating dinner, helping them get ready for bed, etc

61. Get clown “red ball” noses and put them on so you all can be Rudolph; buy headband “antlers” and do the same…

62. Find a picture of you as a child sitting on Santa’s lap and see what kind of reaction you get

63. Get some string and some clips and have the kids help you string up the holiday cards you receive from others

64. Buy some jingle bells and have your kids wear them in their jean pocket

65. Dress up your pet

66. Use those big Amazon boxes and let your kids decorate them as Santa’s sleigh


And what else can you think of to add to the list????

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