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Make family moments this holiday season

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The end of the year brings fun and excitement as the holidays roll around the corner. Parents and children can get into the spirit by creating some fun crafts together.  Here are some great ideas for parties, to keep the little ones busy on the weekend and create some great family moments:

cookies warm the holiday season (Photo by powerbooktrance via Flickr)

Cookies warm the holiday season (Photo by powerbooktrance via Flickr)

Baking cookies

I always loved being a part of baking cookies during the holidays. Whether they’re homemade or measured out pre-prepped cookie dough rolls, kids have a blast because they get to participate rather than watch.

The Pillsbury refrigerated cookie dough is a great baking activity because there is little to no mess and many of them come in pre-measured rolls.  By letting the dough sit on the counter for about 10 minutes, it allows the dough to become soft.  Children can be given plastic knifes to cut the dough on the pre-measured spots without the fear of cutting their hands.

Break out all the decorating sprinkles and icing afterward and kids can get creative.  This is great as a weekend project or as a fun way for kids to use as a gift for friends and relatives.

Countdown cutouts

Counting down to any holiday can be exciting for kids, especially when presents or relatives are involved.  An easy way to help children countdown to the bid day is countdown cutouts.

Everyone remembers the hand turkeys in elementary school.  There still as good now as they were when we put our hands to the construction paper.  To make this festive creation into a countdown, cut extra feathers to be added to the turkey; the exact number of days until Thanksgiving. They can be added by creating extra little cuts on the turkey. Have your child pull on feather out every day closer to Thanksgiving. This gives them something to look forward to, helps with counting, is a fun activity and can create great picture moments to add to holiday cards.

Personalized cards are better (Photo by campbelj45ca via Flickr)

Personalized cards are better (Photo by campbelj45ca via Flickr)

Personalized holiday cards

Nothing is sweeter than receiving a personalized card from a grandchild, niece, nephew, or any child in someone’s life. This can be a fairly cheap activity to do also.  Many discount or dollar stores offer packets of colored paper and boxes of crayons for $1-$5. Show children how to fold the paper into a card, maybe write the message you want fairly lightly so they can trace it, then let their creativity run.

Packs of envelopes can also be purchased at a low price and cards made out of construction paper will ship for the same price as a $3 card bought at Hallmark. With our technological advanced world, going old school during the holidays with a greeting card can mean more than an e-card with a dancing Santa.

Dollar stores are awesome

I’ve never seen someone happier in a dollar store than a child. This can be a great beginning to show them the spirit of giving.  Give little ones five dollar and bring them to a dollar store. Tell them they need to look for 5 things to make a gift for a family member or friend.

Let them walk up and down the aisles and chose what they think would make a good gift for someone special. After choosing five items (you can include the bag or gift wrapping in the 5 items or not) make sure you let them hand the five dollars to the clerk. This can be a big deal for little kids.  It makes the gift seem more personal in the fact that they picked it out and paid for it themselves.

Once they get home give them the opportunity to put the gift together themselves.  It’s surprising to see how much care someone so young can put into a gift when they’re given the responsibility to do so.

These are only a few, but there are hundreds of different crafts and activities parents can do with their children during the holiday. Websites like Kaboose offer a variety of different craft ideas for children and will even break your search down into holiday, child’s age and how much time you have to give to the project.  Look for more websites like this one and expand the fun of the upcoming holiday season.

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