Kid Friendly Christmas Decorating Tips

Our family keeps on growing!
We now have three kiddoes, aged 3 and under.
Christmas decorations have been adjusted to accommodate little fingers and curious minds.
Here is a quick recap of some of our home's kid friendly Christmas ideas:

1. A wooden nativity set

They can learn the story (and carry around baby Jesus) without breaking anything. My kids' favorite activity was building a tower with the people, but at least nothing could break! I made these blocks at a church meeting last year. After painting the wood, we simply ironed on the decals. Choose your own decals on Etsy.

2. Get kids their own tiny Christmas tree

I picked up this two foot tree at a garage sale for $1. The lights came with the tree as well! Originally my plan for this year was to make a felt tree and felt ornaments for the kids to play with, but you can't beat $1. The kids picked out small ball ornaments at Hobby Lobby, and then they each picked out one personal ornament. (That's how we ended up with a cupcake and a dinosaur.) You can tell I let the kids decorate the tree themselves, because all the ornaments are placed "just so."
Having their own tree kept them from playing with the big Christmas tree.
 Finally, the kids decorated the star. I gave them each a paper star with some markers, and when they were done drawing I taped the sides together. I left the bottom un-taped so I could open the star to fit it onto the top branch.

 Grandma added the purple bow when she came over to visit. The kids loved their star and their tree.

3. Find a Christmas puzzle for the kids 

 They loved creating this simple puzzle over and over. The puzzle came from Hobby Lobby, who also carried a matching sticker set. After the tree was decorated, we discussed the reason for celebrating Christmas. We taught the nativity story, and then we let the kids use stickers to re-tell the story.

4. Use a curtain rod as a stocking holder, but don't use traditional holders.

Regular stocking holders aren't strong enough to hold candy, let alone the weight of a toddler pulling on them. After a couple crashes with stocking holders, we decided to use one curtain rod for all the stockings. The curtain rod is also convenient because we didn't have to drill holes into our new mantle to hang nails. The rod wasn't exceptionally strong, but it held up better than individual holders.
Last year we used a stocking holder on each side of the mantle to hold the curtain rod up. But this year one of the stocking holders broke (under the weight of 5 empty stockings) so Johnny came up with a clever plan to hold up the rod. Keep reading below. . .

He used the base of the broken stocking holder as a weight, and he attached it to a long wire with JB Weld glue.
Once it was dry, he set the base of the holder at the back of the mantle and twisted the wire into a hole in the front, which held the curtain rod. 

I love his design because the holder is hidden underneath my mantle decorations. And because it works!
The rod is stronger and holds more weight. And when we have more kids in the future, it will be easy to add more stockings to the scene.

I hope you enjoyed these tips. How do you prepare your home for decorations with young children?

Labels: ,