When it comes to Christmas I’m an absolute lover of the atmosphere, the sharing, the family time that goes along with it and every year I really, really look forward to it. This year is no different, especially now that we have two bubbas who are the right ages (relatively) to enjoy the time. This year I’m trying to do LESS in the way of presents. Raffy always ends up with so much, I find his number of gifts a bit overwhelming and I think he does too. He also really doesn’t need anything and so this year me and my husband are focusing on doing things together – events not gifts!
How about trying these activities instead?
Here are a few examples of things I’m going to try and encourage people to offer and perhaps do ourselves this year, instead of tonnes of gifts:
- Audiobooks – Raffy loves these so much!
- Trips – cinema, theatre, days out, adventure days, memberships
- Money in the bank or their own piggy bank
- Magazine subscriptions
- Craft box subscription e.g. https://www.toucanbox.com/
- Clothes/bedding they need
- Donations – animal charities or adopting animals for charity
- Gift card for a book shop or local charity shop
- Swapping toys subscription services such as https://whirli.com/
- Coupons to “stay up late” or “have a day with mummy”
- Weekends away/holidays
If you’ve got a little one who tends to be a bit picky with their foods, Christmas can be a great way to get them excited about foods again too. Research shows that children can become familiar with and more accepting of foods if they can see, touch and play with them too. It’s not ALL about them eating them. So bringing food into play this Christmas, and getting some food related gifts may help them to feel more comfortable to explore foods.
Food related gift ideas
Here are some food related gift ideas that we would definitely love to try:
- Butterfly gardens – feeding the butterflies and talking about nature, generally
- Gardening subscriptions
- Plantable books e.g. from https://willsow.com/
- Books/audiobooks about foods, meals and family eating occasions
- Trips to outside gardens or allotments
- Mini indoor or outdoor kitchens
- Gardening equipment
N.B. Links are examples, I haven’t been asked to promote them, I just found some examples online and haven’t used them myself yet.
Making Food Fun
The other great thing about Christmas is having some time to play and bake together, so I thought I’d share some food inspired games and activities and baking options! Research also shows that involving kids in other aspects of food, rather than JUST attempting to get them eating it, can make them more willing to try.
Here are some fun food activities you can try around Christmas time with the kids:
- Potato stamps – use Christmas themes to make Christmas cards with these and get little ones involved
- Read books about foods and especially Christmas themed ones.
- Use pasta shapes, painted to make some simple, cheap decorations
- Colour in table cloths can keep the kids entertained for the meal!
- Make a gingerbread house or gingerbread men bunting
- Paint empty eggshells to hang on the tree
- Make a pomander https://www.activityvillage.co.uk/make-a-pomander or a Christmas candle (Christingle) https://www.activityvillage.co.uk/make-a-christingle
- Make and paint a salt dough wreath, if you’ve got some talent https://akispetretzikis.com/categories/pswmia-zymes/christoygenniatiko-stefani
- There are plenty of great ideas to get baking with this Christmas too – try my list of sweet, lower sugar options too!
- If you’re after more food themes Christmas activity ideas, check some more out here: https://www.firstpalette.com/craft-theme/food.html
Let me know if you have any extra food related ideas to engage in with this kids this year. I’d love to hear some more.