Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Our Plan for 12 Days of Christmas Family Fun

This is the most fun I have ever had making a to-do list.

Matt and I were talking the other day about how fun Ryan is at this age and how this will be the only Christmas we'll have with just him. Next year, we'll have another little girl in the mix!

And while we can't wait for the fun that being a family of four at Christmas will bring, we definitely want to soak up these days with Ryan and make the most of this Christmas Season where everything is about the memories we're making with him.

So we made of list of things we wanted to make sure we did together during this Christmas Season:

Pick out & decorate a tree
Not without some excitement, but this goal is already done! If you missed yesterday's almost-trip-to-the-ER tree-decorating story, you can read that here.

Visit Santa
Ryan's practice run looked like this :) 
So we've been doing a lot of talking and reading about Santa and waving at him any time we're at the mall in hopes that his next trip this month might be a little less tearful. Sweet buddy.

Ride the Pink Pig
Riding the Pink Pig at Christmas time is a tradition in Atlanta (a somewhat odd one I'll admit). This is at the same mall with the Santa that we visit, so we're going to take a day to do both things with out little man. He was quite excited over the big pig posters inside the mall so I think this will be a big hit! Maybe we'll do it before Santa in case the Santa visit doesn't go quite as well. ;)

Visit Snow Mountain @ Stone Mountain Park
I am SO excited about this one! The chances of snow in Atlanta are hit or miss every year, so this gives us a guaranteed snow experience with Ryan! He has never seen snow and I just know he will love it. While we're there, we want to build his first snowman, make snow angels, and ride down the big snow mountain if they let him (with us of course)- if not, there's a little mountain for kids 3 and under.

Botanical Gardens
We want to take two trips to the Botanical Gardens this month: one during the day to explore the decorations and see the model train show, and one at night for the Night of Lights.

Visit a live Nativity
We've been talking to Ryan about Jesus and showing him the people in the nativity in our house, so I am really excited about finding a live nativity for us to visit this year. He will love seeing all of the animals and might just make a connection to the pretend nativity in our house.

Make a gingerbread house
This should be some good, messy fun! Bed, Bath, and Beyond sells a kit for $9.99 (found here) that Matt and I have made together in the past. This year will be so much fun to put together with Ryan!

Decorate a Christmas Ornament
I love decorating our tree every year and seeing ornaments from when Matt and I were little. I thought it would be fun to let Ryan decorate one this year and have it to look back on in years to come when we're decorating!

Make Cookies for Santa
Ryan loves to bake and cook with me and I know he will love this recipe!

Have a Christmas music dance party
The boy loves to dance. And he's got some moves! So a Christmas music dance party is a must this year. :)

Watch a Christmas Movie 
Any suggestions for good Christmas movies for a 16 month old?! I was thinking Charlie Brown, but would love to hear any other ideas!

Introduce Ryan to peppermint hot chocolate and candy canes
I think this will be a fun part of our movie night! And since Matt doesn't like chocolate, we might do some apple cider for him. :)

That's it! That's our plan for the next month! Ahhh!
I'm so excited for this Christmas Season!!!



  1. I think you have a great list of fun memories here!!! Christmas is such a special time of year and most of my favorite memories growing up were the time between Thanksgiving and Christmas when all of our family traditions would occur. The ornament thing is the most memorable for me, I still have some ornaments on my tree that my mom and I painted when I was little. My mom dated the backs of them with a sharpie so I knew what years they were so be sure to do that!! Has Snow Mountain already opened? I want to make a trip back to Atlanta to visit this year. My husband and I got engaged there :)

    1. Snow Mountain has already opened! So fun that you guys got engaged there! And I love the idea of dating the ornaments. We will definitely do that!

  2. I love the Live Nativity idea...ha, and so you! Is there a place near us that does it?!?! Would love to do that too. Oh, and I hear the Jim Carey version of How the Grinch Stole Christmas is good. ;) It's watched year-round here. But maybe we should introduce a new one?!? ...and feel free to do #8 over here. ;) Okay...last thing. That peppermint hot chocolate looks DELISH. And Reynolds may have already discovered candy canes on accident. He was walking around with them and then we noticed there was a chunk out of one. EEeeks. {can you tell we miss you and are ready to hang out?!?!!?}

    1. So I found out today that Peachtree Pres does a live nativity service at 10am on Christmas Eve! It's a kid service and at the end the animals walk through the church and finish outside with a live nativity setup- even a real baby for Jesus! We're going if you want to go! There a a number of others I found but this one sounds the coolest and is the closest for us. ...and what makes you think I might need to do #8 at your house?!?! Hahah. Might take you up on that ;) and oh sweet buddy with the peppermint. I guess it went over well, hah! We miss y'all too!!!

  3. Santa's face is hilarious. And I would start with the classic animated Grinch. It's only 30 minutes.

    1. Oooh good thinking! I'm pretty sure that's what's been playing in Pottery Barn Kids on our last few visits and Ryan has been very interested! For some reason he growls at the grinch?! Thanks for the idea!

  4. What a great list!! I don' t have kids, but I love the idea of 12 days of Christmas. We never did that when I was a kid. I will remember this for the future!

    1. This is already my favorite Christmas yet and it's only December 1st! Ha! Starting new traditions with kids is so much more fun than I ever realized before we started a family. You will love it one day too I'm sure!