The Ato Z Family Guide to the holidays

Written by Chronicle Staff. Posted in Uncategorized

Published on December 05, 2012 with No Comments

The A to Z Family Guide to the holidaysWhether you’re looking to fill the family calendar with fun holiday activities or need a few ideas to make the season more meaningful, this guide to family holiday fun has you covered. “Whether it’s finding a great gingerbread cookie recipe and biting one arm off each one (like we do), or just making cards for the family, it’s lovely to give your kids something uniquely their own to look forward to each year,” said Liz Gumbinner of Cool Mom Picks.

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A – Start a calendar to build anticipation for all holiday celebrations. You can buy one or make one, and it can be as simple or as fancy as you like.

B – Make bird feeders out of empty milk jugs or small cardboard tubes rolled in peanut butter and birdseed.

C – Gather some friends and go caroling around the neighborhood or at a retirement center.

D – Drive around town and take in the holiday lights and sights. Plan your route ahead of time, and end the trip with a special treat like hot cider at your favorite spot.

E – “Elf” your neighbors. Put together small treat bags with gift tags that say “You’ve Been Elfed!” Then leave them as a secret surprise in their mailboxes or hanging from the front door.

F – Make time for friends. The kids, especially teens, will appreciate getting to hang out with their buddies. If you’re hosting, make sure you have plenty of fun snack foods.

G – Spice up the holidays with gingerbread. You person behind you can bake you can bake gingerbread cookies or gingerbread cake

H – Keep things cozy with hot chocolate. Set up a hot chocolate station with different flavors.

I – Go Ice Skating at a local rink

J – Jingle bells. Hang bells on your front door.

K – Random acts of Kindness

L – Learn about holiday celebrations of other cultures

M – Make Gifts for friends, neighbors, and teachers

N – Experience the Nutcrakcer ballet.

O – Enjoy the great outdoors.

P – Declare Pajama Day and serve breakfast for dinner.

Q – Plan quiet time.

R – If you leave cookies and milk for Santa, don’t forget his reindeer. Carrots or homemade reindeer chow will give them energy for their long night’s journey.

S – Keep track of Santa’s journey around the world. “If you’re a Santa fan,” says Liz, “use resources like the NORAD Santa Tracker powered by Bing, available at www.NoradSanta.org, to follow his trip throughout the big day.”

T – Trim the tree together. Don’t worry about the tree looking magazine perfect the point is to have fun, and the results will be a tree you can all be proud of.

U – Let everyone unwrap one gift that will help get them in the holiday spirit. It could be a milk and cookie plate set for Santa, new holiday pjs or socks , or a holiday-themed book or CD.

V – Volunteer to help those in need. Some families like to serve meals in soup kitchens, sort clothing or food donations, or collect and pack items for shelters or soldiers.

W – Take a walk around the neighborhood. Make it a scavenger hunt and look for certain holiday decorations, animals, cars and parts of nature.

X – X marks the spot. Plan a treasure hunt in and around the house. Write clues that lead players from one place to the next until they find a special, hidden gift.

Y – Have some fun with yarn. Learn how to finger knit or crochet. Or make holiday decorations and crafts with yarn.

Z – Take a holiday trip to the zoo. Many zoos have special holiday displays and programs that let you celebrate the season wild-style.

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