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How can we now make Christmas extra special for my children...

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#1 MissButtercup

Posted 06 December 2012 - 12:16 PM

Ok so after years of traveling all over the state for Christmas to my parents, sisters, inlaws etc... this year we have decided to stay at home for our first ever Christmas in our own home. My problem is that even though I mentioned this 2 years ago to my family that we would like to host Christmas this year (the year set aside for my family, last year was at the in-laws) and keep asking what everyones plans are, it seems that everyone has made alternative plans. sad.gif

To make matters worse we've had a hellish couple of months with worries and concerns with my pregnancy and IUGR. Bub will be born a week before Christmas yet they still can't seem to make it. :'( I have 3 sisters so was hoping at least one could make the effort to share Christmas with us but it looks like it will just be us. At this stage we can't even guarantee that bub will be out of hospital so it's not as if we can travel to be with them (not to mention Santas bringing a long awaited trampoline).

So what can I do to help make Christmas extra special for my family since it will just be the 4/5 of us? What traditions do you have that we could adopt to make it special instead of just another day at home?

Edited by MissButtercup, 06 December 2012 - 12:21 PM.

#2 her mum

Posted 06 December 2012 - 12:25 PM

Have a special breakfast - even just pancakes, berries and cream, but something you don't have every day!

Take time to pass out the presents from under the tree and open them one by one rather than a free for all.

Dress nicely for Christmas lunch. It doesn't matter that it's only your family. Have the table set nicely and with bon bons etc.

Having a new trampoline will probably mean that it's a special day for your kids anyway!

Maybe in the evening you could go around and check out the christmas lights near you? And then when you get home, depending on the weather have hot chocolate or chocolate milk and just enjoy the evening together.

#3 Amy 1976

Posted 06 December 2012 - 12:29 PM

Make a festive breakfast and all hang around in pajamas exchanging gifts while listening to your favourite music. Let the kids play on the new trampoline for as long as they want then have a lovely lunch with all your favourite Christmas foods.

Maybe go to a beach or park in the afternoon if there is a nice one within a reasonable distance, then watch a christmas themed DVD or play a game in the evening while eating leftover trifle .

On Christmas Eve you could go for a drive to see houses done up with Christmas lights if there are any in your area.

I'm sure you'll be able to have a lovely day.

#4 kshy

Posted 06 December 2012 - 12:29 PM

This year will be our first ever Christmas with no relatives and boy am I looking forward to it

Our plans will be

Christmas Pressio opening and kids actually able to play with them
Christmas breaky - crossiants

Late Lunch - smoked ham

Lots of time playing in the pool, a ride on the new bikes/skateboards

Lots of time just spent as a family!!!!

#5 FeralLIfeHacker

Posted 06 December 2012 - 12:31 PM

Special breakfast, present unwrapping, sit down lunch, we usually play games in the afternoon, this year we are asking Generation questions (x, y , z etc) , some years it's been singstar or guitar hero playoffs.
We usually do a cold rock icecream style buffet for dessert - the kids love this, we go to xmas light display at night and watch a xmas movie, have poppers and glow sticks outside and stay up late.

#6 FeralLIfeHacker

Posted 06 December 2012 - 12:31 PM


Edited by Mummyone1, 06 December 2012 - 12:32 PM.

#7 Feral Grey Mare

Posted 06 December 2012 - 12:34 PM

Do you have neighbours who will be at home for Christmas? Perhaps some informal drinks with whoever is home in the afternoon and kids "showing off" their presents to each other. We have English neighbours who usually come over on Christmas afternoon for a few quiet ones and a couple of single people live in our street who have no extended family and they drop in as well.

#8 Avidlearner1

Posted 06 December 2012 - 12:36 PM

Pass the digital camera around, have the little ones snap photos of you and the others. Put on a Christmas album and dance like crazy. Bring out a board game or activity (ours was charades) that is a Christmas special.

Growing up, the camera and video camera were such special things, only on Christmas were we allowed to take photos of each other - so much fun!

We also did treasure hunts, with clues as to where things were in the house. Mum would write them from Santa and it would say "Jane, I am on the ground, an unusual place for something like me, I am so good at my job, better than your Mum's knee". Answer: Mum had old whisky bottles filled with sand that used to hold the door open rather than her knee in the garage, in the whisky bottle was another clue and a small chocolate etc etc.

#9 MissButtercup

Posted 06 December 2012 - 12:40 PM

Some fantastic ideas! Best I start organizing before bub arrives. original.gif
Still very disappointed in my family, it seems to darn selfish to me..

#10 Milly Molly Mandy

Posted 06 December 2012 - 12:47 PM

We had a Xmas at home with just the (then) 4 of us. It was wonderful, woke up, kids opened a couple of pressies, had yummy brekkie, opened some more pressies, played, relaxed, had a nice lunch, went down the beach and caught up with another family we know who also had no family for the day, came home relaxed then went to friends place for dinner (3 families) fantastic day!!!!

So if I was you I would stop looking at it as a negative and embrace the day. Look around your friends and see if any of them are in the same situation and invite them round for dinner, or just relax and enjoy the day!

#11 Leggy

Posted 06 December 2012 - 01:03 PM

We also did treasure hunts

Hey, I might have to pinch this idea!

We used to do the run-around to see all the cousins on Christmas Day but the first year we decided to just stay at home, it was amazingly relaxing and enjoyable. So now we do it every year and arrange to see cousins at other times - there's going to be a massive pool party the Saturday before Christmas for one side, and Christmas Eve dinner with the other side.

Our Christmas day usually goes like this...
Kids wake whenever and are allowed to ransack their stockings, but not unwrap presents under the tree (my sister and I had a pact that whoever was awake first would wake the other straight away).
At a pre-nominated time, kids can come and get parents up - once we were old enough, we had to come bearing tea and toast (alas, DN is not old enough for this yet!).
These days, this is about when my parents arrive to join in.
Assembly under the tree, one person plays Santa and hands out the presents one by one so we can ooh and ahh over them.
Breakfast: something easyish to make (pancakes and berries, bacon and eggs and nice fruit) eaten at a nicely set table.
Joint tidy up of kitchen/wrapping paper
Laze around grazing on delightful leftovers from Christmas Eve dinner, reading, assembling and/or playing with presents. Wallow in paddlepool. Join scrum of kids in adjacent park and cul-de-sac for present testing and showing off. Snooze. Watch The Muppets' Christmas Carol.
Evening: walk around the neighbourhood and enjoy the Christmas lights.

I was also thinking of arranging a Boxing Day street party with the neighbours, where we can all bring leftovers into the park and nibble on other people's stuff for variety while having a neighbourly chat. But I'll have to get a wriggle on to organise that!

#12 Lyra

Posted 06 December 2012 - 01:14 PM

QUOTE (Old Grey Mare @ 06/12/2012, 01:34 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Do you have neighbours who will be at home for Christmas? Perhaps some informal drinks with whoever is home in the afternoon and kids "showing off" their presents to each other. We have English neighbours who usually come over on Christmas afternoon for a few quiet ones and a couple of single people live in our street who have no extended family and they drop in as well.

we do orphan's christmas and end up with all sorts of people! It's not unusual for an orphan to bring another orphan LOL We find that because it's a day with food we wouldn't normally eat with presents and fun, it's a special day. It's not about the people who are there but the fun you have with the people who are there IYKWIM  This year we are hiring a margarita machine so the kids can serve themselves slushies all day (and so I can have margaritas LOL)

#13 Moneypenny2014

Posted 22 December 2012 - 02:16 AM

I would love to have one Christmas with just the 5 of us!!
I always find our Christmas full of so much pressure to go and visit people and keep everyone happy.
I'd love a quiet day at home with just my family and I know my children would love just having all the time in the world to play with their presents rather than being dragged around the countryside.
Eat some lovely food, play with your children and above all enjoy xx

#14 AxeTheMax

Posted 22 December 2012 - 07:00 AM

Op totally understand, it is similar with us this year. So our plan for the day is

DH get home from work about 5am - rest what ever he can before the kids wake up LOL
Santa Presents
Pancakes for breakfast
Open presents from each other
Dh goes to bed, kids can play with there presents original.gif
Late lunch of ham and salad, with yummy desert - will put bon bons on the table.
DH probably have another rest original.gif before he goes to work that night - probably have takeaway for dinner.

We go to my family on boxing day.

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