Doing crafts with my kids has been an amazing way to get in the Christmas spirit. One of my most treasured memories from my childhood was making an ornament with my mother. I couldn't have been older than 5 or 6 because we had to wait until my sister went down for her nap to work on it. Mom had purchased a kit at the grocery store. It included a ball most likely made of Styrofoam that was covered with white silk threads (we called it angel hair) plus velvet and silky ribbon, decorative stick pins with crystal heads and an assortment of loose beads. We quietly constructed this ornament together sitting at our kitchen table- I'll never forget how I felt so close to my mom.
I wanted to have the same kind of experience with my kids this year, so I hunted to find a similar kit but it seems they don't make them anymore. Since Aidan (4) and Eva (2) are so little, I decided to improvise with age appropriate materials.
We started out with the glass ball ornament - Aidan punched snow flakes out of white bazzill bling and put it in his orb along with a little clear glitter. Eva helped by placing a few snowflake stickers on the outside.
The next ornament swe did together was an impromptu creation that we will treasure for years to come. First, I had the kids color pictures. Then I punched out sections of the pictures with a large circle punch. I also punched out circles of thick clear plastic (part of a product package that I saved just in case I needed it) and placed the plastic over his drawings. I used the small hole punch on my crop-o-dile around the edge of the circle and hand stitched the plastic coverings over the drawings with embroidery thread. I attached a ribbon. at the top and viola- Aidan is so proud of his ornament- I often catch him taking it off the tree, staring at it and then placing it in a more visible location.
Our ;last Christmas ornament adventure was last Sunday. I put out an assortment of materials so the kids could invent their own project. There were jingle bells, pom poms, craft sticks, shiny covered wire and a bin full of craft foam shapes I've collected over the years. The kids saw the foam people cut outs and immediately decided to make our family. I had a bag full of foam hair style, clothing and even shoes which they explored thoroughly. When they finally decided on outfits, we glued it all down and punched holes through the head for the ribbon so they could be hung on the tree. Aidan decided that girls should be on one side of the tree and boys on the other and he loves the idea that he is as tall as his dad. :-) These are the memories that make Christmas so special.