So you’ve committed to hosting the family Christmas get-together at your house. What were you thinking?!
Seriously, it can be a time of building great memories. Often family members live far away and arrive exhausted after a long car ride. The parents need rest while the kids are energized and ready to run, jump, and turn cartwheels.
A little forethought can keep things peaceful and allow grown-ups a bit of relaxation after spending grueling hours behind a steering wheel. Here are some suggestions for making everyone’s Christmas more enjoyable.
Plan an activity for the grandchildren as soon as they arrive. I had cookie dough ready to bake last year, when our grandchildren arrived after 16 hours on the road. Our hyperactive granddaughter helped roll out the dough and we baked quietly, which allowed her exhausted mom to sleep.
If weather permits, take active children outside while their parents rest. Play in the snow or take a walk around the block. Teach them old-fashioned skills like jump rope or make homemade stilts from cans and ropes. My husband allowed our eleven-year-old grandson to drive the riding lawn mower (minus the blade) around our country acreage, while closely supervising. The boy was elated.
Recipe for Homemade Play Dough
1 cup flour 1 cup salt 2 tsp. cream of tartar
1 cup water 1 Tbsp. Salad oil food coloring
Combine dry ingredients in saucepan. Add water, food coloring and oil. Cook until mixture pulls away from pan. Knead as soon as you can handle mixture comfortably. Double this recipe fills a large Cool Whip bowl. Store in air-tight container.(Note: the oil keeps it pliable.)
A few of these ideas will keep everyone happy and give grandparents/aunts/uncles a chance to re-connect with children who live too far away for regular visits.
A Merry Christmas to you and yours!
What about you? Any further suggestions? Use the comment box below.