The Advent and Christmas season is well underway but the Sandwich Generation issues of caring for elderly parents and helping with grandkids are keeping me so busy I have barely made a dent in my Christmas decorations! Which turned out to be a good thing when one of my grandkids asked me if he could help me decorate for Christmas. I love it when procrastination pays off in sweet rewards like that, don't you?
Since they are coming over for a bit next week, before we head back to their house, I told him I would wait for them to help me. In the meantime, we finally had a chance to work on homemade Christmas tree ornaments! I had done some with their cousins a few months ago and now it's their turn.
For the cousins, since they had a brand new little bro, we worked only on wooden Christmas tree ornaments. They are easier, neater, and no little pieces for a baby to find and pop into its cute little mouth.
They had fun making a unique and adorable Christmas ornament for mommy, daddy, and each set of grandparents. We used Crayola washable markers and wooden Christmas tree ornaments I bought at Michaels.
I love seeing the skills improve as each child ages. I am pretty good at writing their names and the year they created each personalized Christmas tree ornament on the back and love looking at previous years and seeing how much better they are each year. I'm hoping that through all these fun and creative activities for grandparents and grandchildren, they'll develop a real love in creating with their hands and continue to do it as adults.
Here's a sweetly personalized Christmas ornament one of my adult kids made me one year – from scratch – including the wood working (following in dad's footsteps!) Isn't it great! And you should see the delightful knitted scarf and the adorable music box from the others. All are such joys!
My husband loved to work with wood, my grandfather enjoyed creating jewelry from rocks and gems, and we have several lovely crocheted blankets from my mother-in-law. Those are the kinds of family memories that are priceless and I look forward to seeing what each of my grandkids' special legacies will be.
Since this group of grandkids has only older grandchildren, we used wooden Christmas tree ornaments along with fun Christmas craft foam stickers. I turned them loose and they got very creative with the different stickers, enjoying themselves thoroughly in the process. Even Grandma Kaye got in the act.
Using these little craft foam stickers makes these very easy crafts for any age child, not to mention the seniors and boomers who love them! The only caveat, as I mentioned above, watch out for tiny pieces around the wee ones
Of course, I had to add some great Christmas music to the mix. Several of the radio stations, like WJIE, are playing Christmas praise and worship hymn songs and music almost non-stop, so I clicked it on and the different songs even gave us a chance to talk about God's love for us, what Emmanuel means, and the promises of God in the Bible and how He fulfilled so many of them on Christmas Day and Easter Day!
It was a really special and delightful morning that we all enjoyed and I now have several more special and unique Christmas gifts for both the elderly parents and grandparents, along with some for sisters and parents. And even a couple of new ones for my Christmas tree decorating party next week. What fun!
Have you started working on any fun Christmas tree ornaments and craft activities for grandparents and grandchildren? We'd love to hear about them!
P.S. Thank you so much for your comments. I appreciate them very much and read each one. I also do my best to reply to them all but, as you can imagine, there are times (many times, lately :) ) when caregiving needs do not allow for that. Thank you for your patience and your sweet comments.