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8 Family Approved Holiday Activities

Looking for a great way to spend the holiday season with your family? Parenting experts tell us that creating family traditions leads to kids developing a positive family identity − and a positive family identity often leads to better grades and more self-confidence. Here are eight activities that are a great starting point for developing your own family holiday traditions.

1. Holiday Movie Night

Every year seems to bring with it a new grouping of holiday movies at the box office. While you could certainly make a family night to go see the latest holiday movie, we prefer the idea of a family night in. Purchase a few classic Christmas movies on DVD or BluRay, pop some popcorn, and watch the movies at home in your pajamas!

2. Blessing Bags

This one is heartwarming. In this tradition, you start with a gallon sized Zip-Loc bag and a trip to the local dollar store. You’ll pick up warm socks, gloves, toothpaste, toothbrushes, and maybe some snacks or a bottle of water. Work as a family to create blessing bags. Then take a drive around your city, handing them out to those struggling to stay warm and well fed this holiday season.

3. Volunteer

There are so many ways to help others have a better holiday. You’ll probably find that giving back to your community helps you to enjoy your holiday a bit more, too. Start by bringing cookies or cards to shut-ins and those living in nursing homes. If you’re able to go caroling, that’s a sure hit. Another option is sending holiday cards to members of the armed forces, or signing up to help with Operation Christmas Child.

4. Donate Old Toys

The influx of toys during the holiday season can leave any parent overwhelmed. Make room for the new by clearing out some of the old. Encourage your children to choose toys that they are willing to part with. The key is to let them choose what goes, not you. There is no such thing as donating, “too little”, or, “too much.” And try to be OK with what they want to donate, even if you have emotional attachments to certain toys. You can always pull them from the “donate” pile and hide them away in a closest later. Donating toys can be difficult for kids, so focus on the joy that their toys will bring kids who can’t afford new toys. Teaching philanthropy at a young age helps it become easier as your kids age. You can lead by example by clearing out some of our old items as well.

5. Bake

It just wouldn’t be the holidays without some baking! Sugar cookies are a traditional place to start. Use a rolling pin and cutters to create holiday shapes that you can bake first and decorate later! These can be a lot of fun to make, so plan on handing out the excess to neighbors.

6. Go Light Hunting

Every community has something special about it. While you can plan on a guaranteed light show at your local zoo, why not spend some time driving through your local neighborhoods looking for places with lots of lights? It can be helpful to check your local community groups on social media to get tips on what local neighborhoods or specific homes are worth visiting. Pack a thermos of hot cocoa to enjoy while you’re out.  Remember- sometimes the hunt is half of the fun!

7. Have a Family Slumber Party

When you stop to think about it − the Christmas tree is up for such a short period of time. Make a special tradition of having a family sleepover in front of the tree. If you have a fireplace, consider roasting marshmallows during this special slumber party. This is also the perfect time to host your holiday movie night.

8. Make A Garland

Homemade garland for your tree is a tradition of yesteryear. But we believe this simple craft is a great time to carve out some family time. Use popcorn, cranberries, or even cheerios to make a colorful garland. A needle and thread are all that you’ll need. Plan to chat about this year’s wishlist items, favorite memories from the year or potential New Year’s resolutions while you thread.

For the perfect complement to these holiday activities, why not order a QALO Sherpa blanket to wrap up in? They’re soft, warm, and able to be customized. Check out the colors, here.