Miss A Columnist

Amber Stiles is currently a Stay-at-Home-Mother of two beautiful girls. She is a recovering mommy blogger who started her journey in 2009 when her first daughter was born and she needed a place to commiserate. She took some time off, and changed a few sites but is back at home on her original family blog, Backwards Life. Amber was born in the Deep South but considers herself a New Jersey native. Over the past few years she has learned to take it easy on herself and other parents. Amber believes it’s important to share your ideas, shortcomings, and successes with those around you. She’s grown into her own as a mother and is now ready to share her abilities with the masses.

Kid Friendly Holiday Decor

I’ve always been obsessed with decorating for the holidays.  Christmas is my favorite time of year.  The warm lights twinkling from the tree make your house feel warm even if it’s freezing cold on the other side of the window.  The color and glitter of decorations fill your house with cheer on the snowiest of nights.

Part of my adoration of holiday decor comes from loving a theme.  I’m a stickler for a color scheme, and every year ours changes.  The presents are all wrapped in variations on that theme and they tend to coordinate with the tree.  I’ll admit it, I like it fancy, I also like to do it all myself.  You’ll laugh, but I used to wrap my own presents when I was a kid because they had to be done nicely and they HAD to match.

I was worried that having a child in the house would make the holidays less enjoyable for me because I’d have to give up some of that control.  The opposite seems to be holding true this year.  Now that my daughter is old enough to help me with some toddler friendly crafts I’m excited to make all of those old-fashioned decorations our parents saved from our childhoods!  This is also the first year that my daughter understands that a holiday is coming.  If Halloween is any indicator…her mind is going to be BLOWN for Christmas!

To help enthuse her up for the upcoming Yuletide season I have a plethora of toddler safe decorations and craft projects planned.  Some I hope will mark the beginning of lasting family traditions that can be practiced anywhere and will grow with our expanding family as the kids get older.

Some of the activities we have planned are as follows:

Christmas book advent calendar (Photo Credit: mypaperpony.blogspot.com)

  • Create a Christmas Book Advent Calendar.  Open one book a night to countdown the days in December left until Christmas.  In my version each book will be numbered, but the backside of the tag will also list an activity to do during the day.  Some of the ideas are; take a walk to see holiday lights at night, ride the town’s Polar Express, make a paper-plate snowman, watch Charlie Brown’s Christmas, etc.
  • Make paper ornaments to decorate the tree.  I plan to put our tree up the weekend after Thanksgiving to maximize the holiday cheer around here.  That doesn’t mean we’ll decorate it fully right away.  I want to leave spaces for my daughter to add her own personal touch.  We may create a bounty of glittery paper snowflakes to adorn the tree or string it with paper-chain garland!

    Paper chain garland (Photo Credit: whipup.net)

  • Display a felt Christmas tree for your little ones to decorate again and again!  This one is adorable and will be my first attempt at sewing felt ornaments.  I think my daughter will go crazy for it, and it’s something that all the kids coming to our house can enjoy.

I’m looking forward to this year’s holiday season more than any I can remember.  The magic of this time of year is amazing when children are involved.  They are so excited to to included and to help.  I hope this inspires some of you to think of ways to engage your kids and teach them what the holidays mean to you and your family.  If you have any other ideas to add please share them in the comments section.  I’d love to hear all about your traditions!

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