I'm to the point where I'm on Christmas Activity Overload: too many cute ideas, too little time. I mean, there is so much fun stuff to do, for heaven's sake.
This is my favorite Christmas thing we do. Maybe my favorite thing we do all year long.
And the best part is that it's so dang easy. That's probably some of why I love it. Scratch that. There's no probably to it. I love how simple it is. That, and how I get to trick the kids. That is my favorite.
This activity is loosely based on the Polar Express book/movie so if you've read it/watched it/talked about it beforehand it might make this make a bit more sense to kids. Or not.
1. Printables on Pillows
Last night Matt did the bedtime routine with our unsuspecting kids while I got to be sneaky. First I put these great free printables from Confessions of a Home Schooler's blog on each of my kid's pillows.
2. Treats in the Car
Then I filled up water bottles with hot cocoa and grabbed a treat for each of us, got the van running and cranked up the Christmas music.
I texted Matt to have the kids go to their beds and then waited impatiently with my hole puncher by the van. This is my Crazy Excited Face, btw. Emphasis on Crazy.
The oldest was the first to see the ticket and snuck down by himself. He was pretty cute about it. I punched his ticket and he popped in the van.
Then I could hear muffled chaos from inside the house. Matt said the little ones were screaming and yelling and running around, finding each other's tickets.
They finally came tearing outside. The two year old had no idea what on earth was going on but that didn't seem to faze her.
4. Punch and Drive
They all got their tickets punched and then we were on our way, looking at Christmas lights and singing along to cheesy Christmas music, all while eating cookies and drinking cocoa in sealed cups. #notmyfirstrodeo
Why are there so many horrible Christmas songs by the way? And how are you supposed to explain why Mommy was kissing Santa Claus? It's creepy.
Anyway, we had a blast. And why wouldn't the kids love it? They think they're going to bed, then Boom. They get to stay up, consume sugar, and look at lights. Sounds like a good deal to me. And I had my fair share of sugar myself, so good times all around.
This was like our 4th or 5th year doing this. And if I actually manage to do something multiple years in a row you know it was 1) easy and 2) awesome. I can't stress enough how highly I recommend this activity.