Big Kids, Parenting

This is how to WOW the pants off your kids on Christmas morning

Melissa Imbesi by Melissa Imbesi
December 2nd, 2019

Remember the excitement of Christmas when you were a little kid? All the bits and pieces leading up to the big day were SO exciting and going to bed on Christmas Eve was the best, because you were so full of crazy anticipation to see what Santa left under the tree for you.

Then you grow up and the excitement level isn’t really peaking like it used to. As a grown-up, that innocence and wonder that comes with Christmas as a kid is no longer the same and it feels a little, blah. For many of us though, that feeling of excitement is re-ignited when we have our own families. Even if you don’t have children, spending Christmas day surrounded by little people is magical. All of that enthusiasm comes back on a whole new level.

Here are a few ideas to turn the excitement dial to max for the little ones in your life….

Santa Surveillance

Show the kids a cool video like this one to get them crazy excited before bed on Christmas Eve. This is all the proof they need that the big man is real.

Photographic evidence!

Check out iCaughtSanta in the App store, where you can add a pic of SC to your own background. There’s also iCaughtSanta Lite that’ll cost you zero bucks and give you three free images to use. Imagine how their little heads will explode when they see evidence of Santa in YOUR lounge room, under YOUR tree like this…

Christmas doorway banner

If you’ve got a doorway leading into the living room or wherever your tree is set up, cover the entire entry with wrapping paper so the kids can burst through a’la AFL game day to find what’s waiting for them under the tree on the other side.

Bedroom stockings

Fill stockings with little bits and pieces, like sweet treats, small gifts, pencils, pens, jars of fairy dust etc and leave them in the kids’ rooms to discover in the morning. This might give you an extra 0.5 seconds of snooze time – but every second counts, right? If you want to buy a bit of extra time, but a simple little Christmas puzzle (if your kids are old enough) with a note from Santa saying they can’t wake up Mum and Dad until they’ve completed it. Genius!

Treasure Hunt

What kid doesn’t love a good treasure hunt? To extend the life of your Chrissie morning, leave a few presents under the tree and then lead them on a treasure hunt through the house to search for the rest.

Feed the Reindeers

reindeer food: v. easy and v. impressive

A few days before Christmas Eve, get the kids to make a batch of ‘reindeer food’ to sprinkle in the front garden to attract the reindeers. You can chuck in whatever you like, but we like a mix of oats, glitter and sprinkles. The kids can also pop this into little mesh bags and hand out to friends and other family members to use in their homes.

Reindeer Poo

What goes in must come out, right? Process a few dates, mix with a bit of cocoa and a sprinkle of your reindeer food and form into mini logs and voila, you’ve got reindeer poo! A little gross, but a lot of fun and will give the kids a good giggle.

A letter from Santa

Visit to download a cool ‘From the desk of Santa Claus‘ letterhead that you can use to leave a message for your kids from the big man himself on Christmas morning.

Snowman soup! you can get mega creative with this…

Snowman Soup kits

Using a cute box or cellophane, wrap up a kit for your kids to make Snowman Soup on Christmas morning. It’s basically just hot chocolate with floating mini marshmallows inside, but if you box up all the ingredients with a new mug and mark it from Santa, the kids will be totes excited. You can keep the tradition rolling each year with a new mug and mark the year on the base with a Sharpie. This is cute to continue on into adulthood, where hot choc can be replaced with coffee beans or booze or whatever.

Get them into the spirit of giving.

This is such a beautiful idea. A few days before Christmas, clean out your kids toy cupboards and have them choose some toys that they have outgrown or don’t play with anymore. Have the kids put the gifts into a bag to leave under the tree for Santa to deliver to a charity or kids in need. Better yet, head down to your local Kmart, buy a gift and pop it under the Wishing Tree.

Track Santa’s progress

Check in on where Santa’s at on Christmas Eve with the Norad Tracker – it’ll tell you where Santa currently is and how many gifts he’s delivered so far.

Don’t forget to capture their little faces

Having footage or pics of your little ones as they open their gifts is priceless and if you’re into keepsakes, get inspired by this dad, who filmed his kids coming down the stairs on Christmas morning for 25 years and compiled it into one sweet video.

Santa’s messy footprints

Get some bi-carb soda and glitter onto the soles of a pair of boots and set a trail of Santa’s messy boots en route to your tree. It’ll only take a few minutes to vacuum up (provided you’ve read some cheap vacuum reviews and have bought a good vacuum cleaner), and the bi-carb will leave your house smelling fresh. Double win.

Give ’em the breakfast of their dreams!

what kid wouldn’t wanna eat this for christmas brekkie?
Image: desire empress

If there’s one day you can throw a little caution to the nutritional wind, it’s Christmas. Organise your kids’ fave food for an indulgent brekkie that’ll have them excited to actually sit at the table and eat for once. Think donut tower, fairy bread, pancakes or even a good ol’ Maccas run – just make it something that’ll leave them shouting – “We can have THAT for breakfast?!?”

Santa’s lost boot

If your kids are little enough to not call bullshit yet, get a big black gumboot and leave it by the door or near the tree while exclaiming, “Santa must have lost a boot here!” The kids can wrap it up, write thank you cards and you can tell them you’re dropping it off at the post box to mail back to SC. This also works with a bit of red felt jammed in the door so it looks like a bit has torn off his suit on the way out.

We hope these ideas have given you a little inspo to add a bit of extra fun to your Christmas morning. Happy unwrapping!! xx

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