December Festivities

As soon as December arrives, my holiday mood switch flips on! I don’t know what it is about this month… perhaps the Xmas songs that you hear everywhere you go, or just the thought of all the fun and happiness this month brings. Whatever it is, I love it. And one of my parenting goals in life is to assure that my kids grow up with that same holiday spirit.

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We’ve already been doing some December activities already, but with my daughter (and myself) now on Winter Break for 2 weeks… there is still more to enjoy! Here’s a list of things we did to enjoy this wonderful time of the year:

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** Letting the kids decorate the tree! – We opt for an artificial tree, but having the kids decorate the tree is definitely an annual tradition (that we actually do on Thanksgiving morning). Notice how the ornaments are gravitated towards little people eye level. hehe. I went back and redistributed the ornaments evenly later. 🙂

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** I already love Disneyland period… but Disneyland in December!?!?!? Everyone must do Disneyland in December at sometime in their lifetime. It is absolutely “magical” as my friend said to me this year. Highlights of Disneyland in December include a special area with holiday crafts and Santa; It’s a Small World holiday; The Christmas Parade; lighting of Cinderella’s Castle; and the amazing fireworks show that includes some “snowfall”. We usually go on a weekday in the first half of December – before schools let out for break. It wasn’t too crowded and the most we waited for the preschool-aged rides was 20 mins.

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**Seaworld’s Christmas Celebration – We’ve been pass holders at SeaWorld for the past 3 years and always try to make a quick trip in December. They have a designated area with Santa and crafts. There’s also a “snow world”.  Some of the shows are changed to Christmas themed, including Shamu’s.  Have never tried the Breakfast with Shamu & Santa, but that’s certainly something to consider.

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** Seaport Village – We caught it on a beautiful December morning this year. Wonderful reminder of why I damn love San Diego. I was bummed that I was too late to make reservations at The Harbor House for their Breakfast with Santa event. But that’s on my to-do list for next year for sure! Instead, we just wandered around the shops, rode the carousel, and soaked in essence of Seaport Village.

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** Gingerbread Man Decorating – This was a first for me, as we usually do houses (and still did a house this week too!) These kits were picked up at Costco. The kids had fun! But I think I like the houses better. I felt like there was limited decorating that you can do on a gingerbread man – plus, a lot of it was already imprinted, so you really had to cover it with icing to customize your man’s outfit.

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** Gingerbread House Decorating – I love these pre-built kits from Costco.  this particular kit even comes with a tree. It helps to add to it your own extra candies to spice up the houses. But it does come with plenty – although my 4 1/2 year old definitely seemed more concerned with taste-testing the candies. Either way, its an easy $10 to entertain the kiddies for an hour or so and get into some holiday traditions.

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** Making Xmas Cards – I got these 4-pack kits in the dollar section at Target. But simple blank paper or printables online will do as well! I just liked the kits because they were cardstock with designs on the front and came with cute envelopes. The kids definitely enjoyed this one, especially my oldest who is practicing writing her letters and getting really good with her stick people art.

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** Christmas Movie nights!!! – One of my favorite things to do! I have always (and still do) love the old skool Xmas movies. Remember those clay looking figures? They still run those movies and a lot of the modern day ones on ABC Family. Get the schedule listing here: 25 Days of Christmas.  I recorded a couple that I don’t have yet on blu ray. But I did purchase the Christmas Classics 4-pack of movies on Amazon. The kids have really enjoyed watching all the movies and learning all the traditional stories that float around this time of year. Here’s a huge list of Holiday Movies for kids.

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**Holiday Manicures – I’m already addicted to pinning nail design ideas… so of course I’m excited to try some on my daughter for the holidays! I think it will be easier once her fingernails are bigger, but for now, she enjoys it and it looks cute. So that’s what matters.

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**Checking out the local Christmas Lights! – ooooh so pretty… and ooooh so many around town! My kids LOVED this this year, moreso than in the past.  There is a compiled list of the lights around San Diego for this year.

I’m sure as the years go on, I’ll be adding to this list. Please do share some of your December activities!

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