Only a few days left until Christmas and the excitement and expectations are building up... I can't believe how fast December has flown by so far - the school holidays have already started for me, which is great, hopefully I can catch up on all the things I hadn't had time to do.
Are you ready for Christmas? Have you managed to tick off everything on your to-do list? Do you have a to-do list?
We're not that organised in our household - we haven't even finished decorating the tree! However, I did manage to get all my Christmas cards sent off a week or so ago. That's still a bit late, as the post takes about a month from Mexico to the UK, but at least they're on their way. I'm so terrible at planning ahead.
I've always made my own Christmas cards, for family at least, so these days I try and involve my daughter, now two and three quarters, in the card-making process. It's not always easy to hit a compromise between the quality-controller in me and the overzealous glue and paint enthusiast in her! There are times when you have to take over and times when you just have to let go!
So, anyway, if you want to make some last-minute Christmas cards with your toddler or preschooler and need a few quick and simple ideas, you've come to the right place.
Last Christmas, Emma was 21 months old and we made these cards (my own idea!), which I included in my post 5 ideas on how to make homemade cards with a toddler a few months ago.
In the interests of recycling, here are the instructions again!
- First I drew lots of outlines of Christmas trees and stockings on several blank sheets of paper and asked Emma to colour them in with some crayons. She obliged with a kind of multicoloured scribble which was just what I was after.
- Then I got out some red and green watercolour paint and a paintbrush and she did more "colouring in" over the top of the crayon lines which gave us a really great two-textured effect; the paint, of course, only being able to take hold on the blank spaces on the paper where there wasn't crayon.
- Then I cut out the tree and stocking shapes and arranged and glued them onto different coloured cards. I also cut out some presents from the leftover pieces of Emma's paper, to stick under the Christmas trees.
- I also stuck one shape - a tree, stocking or present - in the middle of the inside of each card.
And they were done! Quite simple.
Of course, if you need ideas Pinterest is the obvious place to turn to, and I'll admit this year's cards were all Pinterest-inspired.
I thought it would be fun to do some foot painting, and it was. Emma loved doing this and then wanted to paint her own feet!
First we did some black footprints to turn into penguins, then another day we did white footprints to turn into snowmen. When we made the black footprints I made sure I left an oval-shaped patch in the middle of the foot free of paint for the penguins' white belly.
We used patterned paper and decorative tape for the hats, scarves and ear-warmers, orange paper for the beaks or noses and hole-punched some white paper circles for the penguins' eyes. I drew on the eyes, mouths, arms and buttons of the snowmen, but you could also use different materials to stick on instead.
So, if you're expecting a card from us, one of these cute little penguins or snowmen is on its way to you at this very moment (Postal service, don't let me down!).
The last card is also based on a footprint, but in this case we used brown paint and turned it into a reindeer. I did this activity with my kindergarten class so didn't take any photos myself, but my inspiration came from Emmaowl.com.
We changed a few things; the kids drew the eyes themselves, cut them out (sometimes with a little help) and pasted them on, then they made the nose by scrunching up red tissue paper into a ball. I asked them to collect some sticks while outside in recess that they could use as antlers and then I stuck these on with liquid silicon glue. Perhaps the finished cards weren't as perfect as the photo, but they children did most of it themselves.
So there you have a few tried-and-tested Christmas cards that aren't too complicated to make with a small child and look rather cute! Let me know how you get on if you try any of these ideas!