Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Old-Fashioned Christmas Activities (based on Little House books)

Longtime readers of this blog might remember when I blogged about the summer craft clubs we do each year (read about them here or here).   They've been a very fun part of our summers the last few years and I love the friendships and artistic skills my kids have developed through their participation.  This year we decided that the summer just wasn't long enough for such fun things, so we opted to continue the group through the school year, meeting together one Friday night a month.  When I hosted this past week, I thought it would be fun to capitalize on the proximity to Christmas as well as my 7-year-old's fascination with the Little House books, so we made it a fun night of old-fashioned Christmas activities.  It was a blast and perfect for the age range of girls (7-9 years old).  They loved the quotes from the book that I read to accompany each activity.   I think that this activity would also be great for similarly aged boys (maybe without the Little House emphasis).   :) 

All quotes from this book:

Activity:  Making heart shaped cookies with sugar sprinkled on top

Prep:  Have the gingerbread dough made and refrigerated beforehand, so all that the children need to do is cut out their shapes and sprinkle them with sugar.  We made little tinfoil labels and tucked them underneath each cookie, so they could keep track of whose was whose. 

Quote:  (page 34) "And the stockings weren't empty yet!  Mary and Laura reached in and pulled out two small packages.  Inside each package was a little heart-shaped cake.  The tops of the little cakes were sprinkled with white sugar.  The sparkling grains looked like tiny drifts of snow."  

Activity:  Stitching together stockings 

Embroidery floss, chenille needles (thick but still pointy enough to get through the felt), felt.

Prep:  Have the stockings cut out in advance, thread the needles and knot the threads (and maybe even make the first couple of stitches for them), so they can each get started sewing right away. 

Quote:  (Page 48)--this quote doesn't really talk about making their own stockings, but it does talk about hanging them up.  I figured that it was safe to assume that their stockings were most likely homemade.

"Aren't you girls going to hang your stockings?" Pa asked. 

"But I  thought Santa Claus was going to bring us horses," Laura said.

"Maybe he will," said Pa.   "But little girls always hang up their stockings on Christmas Eve, don't they?"  

Activity:  Apples studded with whole cloves

Materials:  plenty of whole cloves (found in the spice section) and apples (or oranges)--we actually used clementines when we did the activity, since they were on sale for a great price that week. 

Prep:  None

Quote:  (page 15) "Aunt Eliza had brought Ma a large red apple stuck full of cloves.  How good it smelled!"

Peppermint sticks (I found them at Walmart and at the drugstore)

Quote:  (page 34) "They plunged their hands into the stockings again.  Out came two long sticks of candy.  It was peppermint candy, striped red and white.  They looked and looked at the beautiful candy.  Laura licked her stick, just one lick.  But Mary was not so greedy.  She didn't even take one lick."

1 comment:

Katie said...

I can vouch for how precious this was! Absolutey adorable. We feel so lucky to have been a part of it!