Want help with some fresh Christmas Ideas? Here’s our gift to you. ;) The Thumsters TOP 5 TIPS FOR A KID FRIENDLY CHRISTMAS in 2022 will help you create a Christmas perfectly suited for the whole family!

It’s the mooooooost wonderful tiiiiiime….. of the year!  But is it? I mean of course it IS, but it can also be a little on the stressful side! Want some help with some fresh Christmas Ideas? Here’s our gift to you. ;) The Thumsters TOP 5 TIPS FOR A KID FRIENDLY CHRISTMAS in 2022!

Christmas IS a magical time of year, especially for kids. The excitement of opening presents, spending time with family, and indulging in delicious holiday treats can make it a truly special occasion. Here are a few ideas to help you make the most of your Christmas celebrations with kids:

Start a new tradition

One of the best ways to make Christmas special for kids is to start a new tradition. Kim Kardashian likes to have a professional piano player come into serenade her kids in the morning in the weeks leading up to Christmas but it needn’t be that opulent! Holiday traditions could be something as simple as baking cookies together to share with neighbours or friends, going on a Christmas-light walk in your neighbourhood, or watching a Christmas themed movie every night leading up to the big day, both new movies and the classics!  What’s the best Christmas movie for kids? Here are a few of our favourites!

-       The Polar Express

-       Spirited

-       Elf

-       The Grinch

-       Jingle all the way

-       The Nutcracker and the four realms

-       Deck the Halls

-       The Santa Clause

Everyone in the family can choose at least one movie each for the family to watch together during Christmas week, and enjoy an accompanying holiday themed snack. Kids love to be "in charge" of choosing things! Have we forgotten any Christmas classics? We’d love to hear your family’s favourite in the comments.

Get creative with gifts

Instead of just buying your kids toys, why not get creative with their gifts? You could make them a special piece of artwork, put together a scavenger hunt to find their presents, or even create a personalized coupon book with things like "one extra bedtime story" or "a picnic at the park".  This is a fun tradition you can adjust as they age, including things like ‘a movie date with Mum or Dad’, or‘ favourite dinner out’ as they hit their teens…

To encourage the idea that Christmas is about giving as much as receiving, have you considered doing a secret santa with your immediate family?  Even young children (5 and up) can be given a small budget to spend on someone else in the family, and then taken by a parent or older sibling to pick a gift out. This is another gift tradition that can grow with your kids and can foster connection with different family members as their ‘secret santa’ changes every year. It's important and special to learn from a young age to consider those you care about and what might be important to them, and watch them open a gift picked by you  knowing you chose it carefully for them! What are some of your gift giving traditions… Do you open presents Christmas Eve or Christmas morning? Or do you open ONE present Christmas present on Christmas Eve? Let us know in the comments!

Focus on the true meaning of Christmas

While gifts and treats are definitely part of the fun of Christmas, it's also important to remember the true meaning of the holiday.

Take some time to talk with your kids about the story of Jesus' birth and the historical significance of Christmas as a time of giving and compassion. You might like to look up and learn with your kids about how different cultures celebrate Christmas around the world, you may even find a new tradition your family might enjoy!  For example…

- Kids in Iceland have a different kind of ‘advent calendar’ in the 13 days leading up to Christmas. Instead of having a cardboard calendar with little chocolates behind numbered doors, each night children place their shoes by the window before heading to bed, hoping to be visited by the ‘Yule Lads’. If they have been good they might receive a sweet treat, but if they’ve been bad... shoes full of rotten potatoes!

- In Denmark on Christmas Eve, families place their Christmas tree in the middle of the room and dance around it singing carols.

- Following on with the ‘shoe’ theme, children in the Netherlands leave a shoe by the fireplace or back door and wake up on Christmas with it full of treats like marzipan, gingerbread and chocolates.

- In some South African communities, families come together for braaing, a meal consisting of things such as marinated steaks and boerewors sausage over a grill and a delicious dessert called a ‘Malva Pudding’. Sweet and delicious, it’s actually quite a simple recipe to make! Try it here and let us know what you think.

Make time for family

Christmas can be a busy time of year, but it's important to slow down a little and make sure you set aside some time to spend with your family. This could be as simple as having a special holiday meal together or playing a fun game on some of the evenings leading up to the big day. Whatever you do, in all the madness of shopping and planning, make sure to prioritize quality time with your loved ones.  

The actual ‘day’ of Christmas can get quite overwhelming for young children (anyone really...) with having to visit various different extended family and trying to fit everyone and everything in… It is ok to set boundaries for your own immediate family on the day and arrange to see extended family perhaps on Christmas eve or the day after Christmas on boxing day. As long as these plans are articulated well ahead of the holiday season so everyone is aware of what their Christmas might look like, it is a great example to your own children on how to prioritise your own mental health and wellbeing ahead of trying to keep all the rellies happy (which is often easier said than done!)

Enjoy the little things

Finally, don't forget to enjoy the little things that make Christmas special. Whether it's singing carols, admiring the Christmas tree, or snuggling up by the fire with a mug of hot chocolate, these small moments are what make the holiday truly memorable.  Not the mountains of gifts under the tree.  At the end of the day we at Thumsters feel that birthdays are for the big gifts, special to the birthday person because it’s their own ‘special day’, and Christmas could be more about time spent with family, fun family traditions, with a bit of gift giving sprinkled in to teach generosity and thoughtfulness.

Overall, the key to a successful Christmas with kids is to focus on creating special moments and traditions that your family can look forward to each year. Whether that’s decorating the Christmas tree, writing letters to Santa, or watching your family’s favourite Christmas movie, by taking the time to intentionally make the holiday season meaningful and enjoyable for everyone, you can help ensure that your kids have a truly magical Christmas. What is a typical Christmas like for your family? What are your Christmas Eve traditions? Let us know in the comments below, along with what was YOUR best Christmas as a child!

It's that time of year where Team Thumsters wish all our Thumsters families a very merry Christmas and a special holiday season with your family. Whether you live in a winter wonderland or are having a hot summer beach Christmas like our team here in Australia, take care of one another, remember to work on connection and communication, and always catch those thumbs up moments! x