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Lets make a list of lovely christmas experiences which cost little or no money.....

(36 Posts)
AboardtheAxiom Fri 06-Nov-09 12:38:31

Thought this would be a good idea for a thread as lots of people struggling, and I for one am focusing on quality time and experiences with DS and being incredibly restrained and realistic about what I need to be spending money on.

My favourites that I have thought of so far..

writing and posting a letter to FC
a walk in the park woods for holly and pine cones
cuddling up in PJs and watching polar express together

can anyone add to these as I am looking for ideas... smile

GypsyMoth Fri 06-Nov-09 12:42:00

cristingle services

making the decs/food together

Terpsichore Fri 06-Nov-09 12:44:44

Make 'stained-glass' biscuits - they're great fun. Just a normal plain biscuit recipe; any of your choice, really, but it has to be something you roll out and cut shapes. If you have any Christmassy cutters, fine, but plain rounds will do because you then cut out holes in the middle and fill the gap with crushed boiled sweets...again, any ordinary old kind as long as they're different colours. When you bake them, the sweets melt, and then harden once out of the oven as the biscuit cools to make coloured 'glass'.

A string of these look lovely and very Xmassy. Not expensive to make, and the dcs can help (or hinder!).

teenyweenytadpole Fri 06-Nov-09 12:45:32

Making homemade christmas cards for the grandparents with lots of glitter and sparkly bits, I do this every year, usually something like footprints made into Rudolph if that makes sense!

Christmas eve carol service

Going for long walks on Christmas day and coming back all rosy and fresh ready for some mulled wine (made with cheapest bottle of wine possible, lots of spices and sugar!)

AboardtheAxiom Fri 06-Nov-09 12:48:17

Ooh thanks these are great keep em coming MNers. smile

Last time I went to a christingle service I got all emotional and cried blush and that was pre DS am even more soppy now I'm a mum!

dilbertina Fri 06-Nov-09 12:50:46

Instead of advent calender we have a christmas robin who arrives when the decorations go up (one of those dodgy looking fake robins - hopefully dcs won't get to see close up anyway!). The Robin stays really still during the day but flies around each night, every morning the dc have to find his new perching point. Added bonus is you can say he's keeping an eye on them for father christmas and will report back to him if they have been good (or not!)

nickelbang Fri 06-Nov-09 12:51:13

a lot of churches are also doing special advent services at the end of novmeber (ours is on the saturday instead of advent sunday because the lights are going on on the same day and it will draw crowds in hmm )

and then there are loads of that kind of thing throughout december.

country walks is a great idea: take along a flask of warm soup too grin

GypsyMoth Fri 06-Nov-09 12:52:43

oh i cry every year.....the children gather down the aisles.light the candles and lights get switched off. then they all sing 'away in a manger'

highlight of our xmas...all my dc love it,even the ones now teenagers. they are bringing friends along this year too.

MintyCane Fri 06-Nov-09 12:52:46

fab idea dilbertina we do that with a satsuma we draw a face on it and it moves around the house - but then we are a bit odd. grin

MrsBadger Fri 06-Nov-09 13:00:59

and in the absence of snow you can make a quite decent indoor snowman from a pile of boxes / books / recycling draped in a white sheet

pin on buttons, felt scraps etc with safety pins for features, add scarf and hat (NB do not try a pipe)

GypsyMoth Fri 06-Nov-09 13:03:50

hey mrs badger!! great idea there....and you could make a santa too to go with it....i'm starting to collect boxes now!

Bettymum Fri 06-Nov-09 13:09:18

Loving the christmas robin!
I just got a pack of red, gold and green foil paper chain things to make with DD (21 months), she'll probably just lick them and squish them but it's £1.99 worth of fun for the two of us

MrsBadger Fri 06-Nov-09 13:11:54

if your dc are big enough to work a stapler safely then cut-up magazines / catalogues make quite good paper chain stoo - choose colourful advert pages rather than text

nappyzonecantrunfortoffee Fri 06-Nov-09 13:16:19

oh i love the robin idea - must track one down though may resort to a satsuma grin I always get emotional at christingle too and cuddle my dd in to the point she gets embarrased! Wont take ds as he is still destructive and will no doubt smash up baby jesus crib.

GypsyMoth Fri 06-Nov-09 13:28:26

there was a new mum there last year,with little newborn (very fresh) in her arm and candle in her other hand....she sang the whole carol smiling down at her new daughter....evryone was watching her teary eyed....tho year that newborn might be a bit more vocal.

NancyBotwin Fri 06-Nov-09 13:43:52

We do:

the walk in the woods to collect holly and ivy

watch a Christmas film on Christmas Eve

go to a children's church service on Christmas Eve

making biscuits

Another snow idea is to buy a box of white circular self-adhesive labels and stick two at a time to a long piece of thread, sandwiching the thread in between (hope that makes sense!) If you do several threads and hang them at a window it looks (a bit!) like snow falling.

FimbleHobbs Fri 06-Nov-09 13:48:20

These are lovely ideas.
At half term we collected some leaves, painted them, and sprinkled glitter on them - not quite sure what we'll do with them now but they look very festive and were very cheap to do.

lolster Fri 06-Nov-09 13:51:24

Dilbertina - We use Santas robin too. Works a treat. We put ours outside on a window ledge and he watches if everyone is behaving.

NancyBotwin Fri 06-Nov-09 13:53:01

I forgot to say that I always make decorations with the holly and ivy I collect - I tie them in little bunches with a Christmassy ribbon and add some fake berries & pine cones on a stick which I've had for ages.

I use them (upside down) instead of a wreath, pinned to an internal door or tied to the newel post of the stairs.

jetforkesandbonfires Fri 06-Nov-09 19:45:09

those are all lovely ideassmile

Our church does a service the afternoon of the first sunday of the month, especially for children. This year, for the first time ever, my 12 yr old (aspergers and painfully shy) has agreed to be in the nativitysmile It is such a lovely service, all the kids run about and sing so loudly enthusiastically that everyone else cant help but smile!

We also do the walks, but didnt think to take a flask along - until now! DD2 (3) is getting hoping for a bike from Santa - which she says she will get if she "doesnt cry on her birthday"hmm at the beginning of december. I think a xmas day walk/bike ride is called forwink

domesticslattern Fri 06-Nov-09 19:54:01

Icing sugar footprints from Santa.

TheMitsubishiWarrioress Fri 06-Nov-09 19:54:11

can I recommand this site?
Dc's and I are working through it and adapting according to what we have in. I am determined not to buy anything.

teamcullen Sat 07-Nov-09 09:56:54

we have santas elf come to stay at this time of year.He sits on top of the bookshelf, watching for good behaviour

Flightattendant Sat 07-Nov-09 10:00:39

Making your own stockings, is very easy and you can personalise them too - only takes a few scraps of fabric or old clothes cut up.

The kids can choose their trimmings or ribbons etc etc.

Might stretch to bunting actually as well grin

paisleyleaf Sat 07-Nov-09 10:01:36

I like driving/walking round to see all the lights, you know how people get really into it these days.
We're lucky in that there's a village not far where they go all out and the whole village is decorated. There's a christmas tree farm there too, with reindeer

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