There’s something about the holidays that just seem to bring out the best in people. That smile on your face the first time you hear holiday music on the radio (or streaming on your phone), choosing to take the long way home so you can see all the holiday lights on display illuminating the neighborhoods in your town, and, of course, the many holiday traditions that you and your loved ones are looking forward to, or may even be starting for the first time this year. One of the most special holiday traditions that many people do, or that you can start doing, is creating at-home crafts with the people who mean the most to you. You can make simple crafts, or really test your abilities. And depending on how well your crafts turn out, you may choose to save them and put them on display year after year. So, cue up the holiday music and let’s get crafting with these five at-home holiday craft ideas.
Starting to receive holiday cards from your friends, family, and colleagues? Perfect. Instead of opening them, taking a look at the pictures, and then putting the cards away for good, you can create a DIY Holiday Card Tree and display the cards.
Pick a spot in your house – maybe it’s a closet door near your entrance or an empty wall, and organize the cards to your liking. Then, the same way that a tree is wider at the bottom and skinnier on top, you can start building your DIY Holiday Card Tree. Line up, let’s say, a row of ten cards on the bottom, nine cards on the next row above that, and then continue on until you have one card to represent the top of the tree. The reason we recommend organizing your cards ahead of time is so you can use the top spot where a tree topper or a star may go to show off your own holiday card with your family, or maybe even your favorite holiday card that you’ve received this season. A nice touch may be adding a metallic bin with gifts in it to represent the tree’s trunk.
This same concept can even work by using magnets and pinning the cards in the shape of a tree on your refrigerator. If you haven’t received any holiday cards yet this year, but want to get started on your DIY Holiday Card Tree anyway, you can also search your house for vintage cards or buy new ones. And for those of you who are up for a challenge, you can also make a family game out of this by setting a timer and seeing who can pin the most cards in the shape of a tree in the quickest amount of time. This game also works after the holiday when it’s cleanup time – see who can take down the most cards the fastest.
Depending upon where you live, the winter weather may make it difficult for you to get outdoors and exercise as a family. That doesn’t mean you can’t stay active indoors this holiday season, while also being crafty. You can make an obstacle course similar to Santa’s Christmas Eve trip.
Using household items like pillows, stack them up and spread them out to represent the houses that Santa (aka whoever is doing the obstacle course) will have to stop at and deliver presents to from a pillowcase sack. The presents can be crafts that you’ve already made. To up the stakes, time each participant or have everyone deliver their presents at the same time with the winner being the person who delivers all the gifts in their pillowcase sack first.
MomsTeam recommends designing the obstacle course in a challenging way such as making sure everyone will have to maneuver around the kitchen counter, run up and down the stairs, crawl under the dining room table, and then race back to the finish line. While fun is important, so is safety. Make sure that the obstacle course is safe for everyone involved when designing it. It may also be a good idea for the grownups to test the course out first before any children try it.
Print out this Woman’s Day Star Chair Decoration template and then trace it onto holiday colored papers. After that, using a scoring tool, score and fold the solid lines up like mountains and then score and fold all the dotted lines down like valleys. Continue this process to make several more stars and then tape the stars to a strand of ribbon. You can vary the size of the stars if you’d like, making some larger, while others smaller. Once all the stars are lined up on the ribbon, secure the ribbon to your dining room chairs and let the stars hang over the back of the chair. This will make your dining room feel more festive and remind you of the magic of the holiday season.
If you have any energy left over after making the star decorations for your chairs, crank up the holiday music and get your whole family involved in a game of musical chairs – the holiday edition. Or, if you’d rather stay seated after all your hard work, you can play the Oven Mitt Christmas Game, which is similar to musical chairs, except when the music stops you pass a gift-wrapped present to the person next to you. The only catch is that they have to try to open the present with oven mitts on. If they’re not able to open the present before the music stops, then they have to pass the oven mitts and the gift to the person next to them for their turn. Each person gets a chance to unwrap the gift with oven mitt hands until someone is able to get the present open. Whoever opens the present with the oven mitts on gets to keep the gift.
Candy Cane Mice are fabric creatures with red-and-white candy cane stripped tails that make for good favors at a holiday dinner or cute gifts for kids to give to friends and family. They’re relatively easy to make and don’t require a lot of supplies.
Print out this Candy Cane Mice template, enlarge the template by 150 percent on a photocopier, and then cut it out. After that, trace mouse ears and a body onto felt and then cut the mouse’s body and ears out. Using a contrasting color, cut the mouse’s inner ears and a dot for the nose from felt. To make the mouse’s eyes, cut small dots from black felt. Once everything is cut out, glue the face and inner ears in place. Then make slits in the body for ears and the candy-cane tail where it’s marked. Slip the ears through the slits at the front, slide the wrapped candy cane through the body slits, and tuck the end underneath the ear piece at the back.
Once these Candy Cane Mice are completed, you can hide them around your house and have everyone search for them. Depending on how involved you want to get with this candy cane mouse hunt game, you can assign point totals to the Candy Cane Mice that you’ve created based on their colors. For example, the blue mouse can be worth 10 points, the red mouse can be worth 20 points, and the green mouse can be worth 30 points. This way it’s not only who finds the most Candy Cane Mice who wins, it’s also about who found the Candy Cane Mice that were worth the most points. Maybe the winner of this candy cane mouse hunt game can even receive a special present for his or her victory.