Tag Archives: Christmas magic

18 ideas for filling your Christmas Eve Box

A Christmas Eve box is a relatively new tradition for us. I’m not even really sure where it came from. We’ve always done the Elf on a Shelf thing and for the last few years the Elf has delivered a Christmas Eve box to our house from Father Christmas.

I think the idea of the Christmas Eve box is to give little ones something to tide them over until Christmas Day. Something that will help to calm their excitement and enthusiasm for not going to sleep or for waking up incredibly early. We’ve usually been quite lucky with the early morning wake ups, but the going to sleep on Christmas Eve is always a bit tricky.

To us, our Christmas Eve box should be filled with nice things we can do together as a family, things that’ll keep us cosy and things we will just enjoy. We have a small personalised sack we use for ours, but in previous years we’ve used boxes we’ve decorated. You can buy special boxes, but if you have the time and inclination, it’s nice to decorate your own.

18 ideas for filling your Christmas Eve Box

Your Christmas Eve box can be as simple or as complicated as you want. If you’re struggling to think of what to put in yours, here are some of my suggestions.

18 ideas for filling your Christmas Eve Box

  1. New Christmas pyjamas
  2. New Christmas slippers
  3. A Christmas book to read at bedtime
  4. A DVD to watch together on Christmas Eve
  5. A Christmas mug, hot chocolate and marshmallows
  6. Family snacks – popcorn, chocolate, candy canes, whatever you like!
  7. A special Christmas decoration to hang on the tree
  8. The Santa plate to leave a snack out for Santa
  9. Reindeer food
  10. Christmas crafts to make together
  11. A magic key if you need one
  12. Christmas cookie baking kit
  13. Christmas colouring or activity books
  14. Cuddly toy
  15. Letter from Santa
  16. Novelty Christmas socks
  17. Christmas bubbly bath, for Christmas Eve bath-time
  18. Christmas stockings to hang up for Santa

Obviously you don’t need all 18 of these ideas, pick and choose what works for you and create a box which suits your family. What will be in your Christmas Eve box this year?

18 ideas for filling your Christmas Eve Box

 

How we made some Christmas Magic

Growing up my parents didn’t have much money, but my Dad had about as much imagination as it was possible to have. In many ways he was a great Dad, he made us laugh ridiculously hard on a daily basis. At Christmas time he sprinkled his special brand of magic around the house.

In scenes unheard of these days, our house did not have a single decoration up until Christmas Eve. My brother and I would toddle off to bed, leaving the house as it always was, save for a few Christmas cards dotted around the lounge.

Christmas morning would come, we’d tumble out of bed to find stockings hanging on our doors. We’d either sit together conspiratorially in one of our bedrooms and open our stockings together, or open them separately, then compare notes.

But under no circumstances were we allowed downstairs. If one of us did creep down for a look, there was nothing to see. Father Christmas had used his magic rope to tie the lounge and dining room doors shut and only my Dad was able to open it. If we gained entry without our parents, we were sternly warned that all the presents would disappear. No one wanted that!

Once my parents were awake (or awoken at some hellish hour) we were allowed into the lounge. The door would swing open and we’d burst in all excited. Father Christmas had put the tree up and all the decorations while we were in bed. Not only that but under the tree were presents for everyone. It was a Christmas miracle!

What I now know and realise is, it wasn’t Christmas magic, it was my Mum and Dad working their arses off from 8pm decorating the house, wrapping the presents and starting to prep the Christmas dinner. No wonder they looked extra awful come Christmas morning and no wonder when after only having 2 or 3 hours sleep they were less than overjoyed at having two excited children bouncing on them until they got up.

They were legends, their Christmas Eve efforts made everything much, much more magical and realistic for us. So I was determined to inject some magic and mystery into our family Christmases.

I’d love to do what my parents did, but that’s an incredible amount of hard work very late in the day. Plus a lot of people think you are stark raving mad if you’ve not fully decorated your house by the 1st December these days. So we’ve struck a balance.

On Saturday we went to Wythenshawe Community Farm and bought our tree, a very handsome 7 footer. We propped the tree up in a cool corner in the kitchen with a promise to decorate it tomorrow.

That night he had an early night, so we sprung into action. The Christmas tree was put into position, decked with lights, baubles and treasured decorations. The mantlepiece was decorated and our stockings hung up, lights and garlands were strung everywhere.

We were exhausted, but the house looked lovely. Our last act was laying out some decorations and a note from Elfie our Elf on the shelf saying she’d not had chance to finish decorating the tree and could the small boy put the last few decorations on.

Morning came, he woke us up and we all went downstairs (hubs sneaking down first to put all the lights on). The small boy walked in and was stuck dumb with wonder. He jumped up and down and said “the tree, the tree!” And then inspected everything with a look of pure joy on his face. After a few minutes he said “is it Christmas time now?” And my heart melted.

Christmas magic

THAT is what Christmas is all about. We found true Christmas magic on Sunday morning. He’s utterly delighted that Elfie decorated the tree and we love that we’ve created some actual, real magic for him.

Christmas isn’t about presents, giving and receiving, or vast turkeys wedged in the oven. It’s about magic and love. It’s a beautiful thing to believe in magic, because it does happen, even if it’s manufactured by exhausted parents. Merry Christmas x