Tips to Create Christmas Memories with Grandchildren

Linda GildenBy Linda Gilden4 Minutes

Now that the holidays are upon us, you may be wondering what you could do to entertain the grandchildren while they are at your house. Here are a few ideas to get your ideas flowing to create some lasting Christmas memories.

Create Christmas on the Outside

  • Invite the family to decorate your house.
  • Have all the lights and decorations in order when the family arrives.
  • Make sure there are plenty of things for the young grandchildren to do. If appropriate, have a contest for decorating each area of the house.
  • Have supper in the slow cooker so that you can feed them before you send them home.
  • Tour the town and look at all the lights. If your car is not big enough for all the grandchildren to fit, borrow or rent a car that will hold them all. Check websites before you begin so you can plan a logical route where there are good lights for viewing and that will not keep the grandchildren out too late.
  • Pick them up one family at a time and have blankets in the car in case they get cold. Make a special snack and take it in the car for munching on the way. Sing as you go.
  • Let the lights inspire your music. Or let the children take turns choosing a carol to sing.
  • Carol around the neighborhood. If you don’t have a neighborhood, visit a nearby nursing home. Nothing brings a smile to an older person’s face quicker than children.

Create Memories on the Inside

  • Bake cookies together. If your grandchildren are young, you may want to ask a parent or two to help. Prepare for a really fun and messy time. Making cookies will create great memories so take lots of pictures. Also, select recipes that are easy to make with the children. Save the difficult recipes for adult baking time.
  • Make gingerbread houses together. Create your base with graham crackers, make your own gingerbread (not recommended), purchase the plastic reusable bases, or buy a kit. One kit for a gingerbread village makes five small gingerbread houses. This is a great way to have everything you need and provide each child with a gingerbread house to eat or take home. You can save these from year to year in the freezer but I recommend making new ones every year. The process is part of the fun.
  • Gather around the Christmas tree to create a new memory each year with a new Christmas story to read. Turn off all the lights in the room except the tree. Have the children lie on the floor so they can see the beauty of the tree from a different perspective.
  • Have a special present for each grandchild. Have a scavenger hunt for those presents. Some of the clues could be walk to the sun porch and look under the blooming plant, go up the steps and look under the nearest bed, walk back down the steps backward while singing “Jingle Bells!, pause on the steps for a picture, go to the place where you dry your clothes and look inside… The dryer is a good place to hide small presents and a place where even the most clever child probably wouldn’t think to look.

Think of family Christmases in the past. What are some things you did that created wonderful, lasting memories?  Maybe you should repeat this year.

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