Am I the only one who worries that my kids (and me) sometimes lose track of why we are celebrating Christmas? I’m always so appreciative when someone invites our family to participate in a service project or recommends a Christmas movie that isn’t just about Santa and presents (as fun as that is). This year my sisters and I collaborated on a list of ways to make Christmas a little more meaningful without getting an eyeroll from the kids or husband. And there’s no caroling involved.
- Hot cocoa mix for the neighbors. Dump your own secret recipe or a tin of Swiss Miss into a mason jar about halfway. Fill the rest with mini marshmallows, mint Hershey’s kisses or mini candy canes. Tie it all up with a ribbon and a note.
- Invite the kids of a busy mom over for an afternoon so she can get some shopping, baking or wrapping done. If you are really helpful, make dinner or cookies with the kids and send it home with them. If you have big kids yourself, this is a great project for them.
- Come up with a new family tradition. It could be a special Christmas morning breakfast (ours is bacon wrapped eggs, fried potatoes and orange juice), a sugar cookie decorating competition, or challenge to find a Christmas song everyone isn’t sick of.
- Set up a special pre-Christmas Zoom call with grandparents where you tell them something you appreciate about them.
- If you draw names for gift giving, consider opening them on Christmas Eve. It spreads out the fun and adds appreciation because the focus isn’t on “what’s next.”
- Everyone write down a question they think Jesus might ask them (anonymously). Put in a jar and over the week before Christmas pull one out each day and have everyone think about how they might answer the question and what inspiration it gives them.
- Read https://www.theminimalists.com/season/ as a family.
- Tour the neighborhood lights and come home to family game night with pizza and rootbeer.
- Decorate gingerbread (or graham cracker) houses.
- Shepherd’s meal for Christmas Eve (flatbreads, dried fruit, nuts, sliced meat and cheese.
- Family bake off. Have everyone pick a recipe (simple), make it and judge.
Our winner: Oreo Truffles (free printable under "Recipes")
1 package Oreos
8 oz cream cheese softened
12 oz white, milk or dark chocolate chips
Smash up Oreos really well. Combine with cream cheese. Roll into 1” balls and put in fridge to set for about 15 minutes. Melt chocolate and dips balls. Decorate with sprinkles or not. Messy but so good.