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December To-Do List:


Yikes, it’s December already! As I looked at my calendar last night to plan my monthly to-do list, I thought a Kidoinfo list highlighting some relevant archived articles would be helpful as readers plan their month. Find craft projects, local events, and books to read, along with tips and ideas to make your holidays a little easier, hopefully less stressful–and memorable for the kids. Some of you may be way ahead of me, so pick and use what you need and please share your own helpful tips and ideas below with the Kidoinfo readers.

1. Make an advent calendar to count down the days till Christmas or buy one at a local shop (probably on sale now).

2. Mark you calendar with upcoming events and parties for school, home, work, etc. Plan which local events or family traditions you plan to participate in this year. If you plan to see a show, order your tickets and put them in safe place. Subscribe to Kidoinfo and receive our newsletter list of “Weekend Picks” in your inbox every Thursday.

 Ri Wp-Content Uploads 2008 01 Snowflake63. Plan your holiday card. Find an adorable photo of your child(ren) or schedule a professional or at-home photo shoot. Buy ready-made cards or make your own. Use old magazines to make collage cards for family and teachers. I organize my contacts in BatchBook so I can easily print all my addresses on mailing labels.

4. Teach your children about the many holidays celebrated at this time of year.
(Christmas, Hanukkah, Eid, Kwanzaa, Winter Solstice). Read books, listen to music, and try new foods associated with the various holidays. We have an international house–our family celebrates Christmas, Eid, and Hanukkah.

5. Make paper snowflakes.

6. Buy and trim your Christmas tree. I find it easier–and less frustrating for my boys–to bring out all the decorations and test all the lights before announcing that it’s time to hang the ornaments on the tree. After the decorating is done, we usually celebrate with hot cocoa and popcorn or holiday treats.

7. Plan to make holiday gifts this year–they’re good for the budget and the soul. Remember that your child’s handprints always make a nice gift for family. Keep it simple–put it on card or ornament; or not so simple–make it into a book.

8. Take the Buy Local-Buy Handmade Pledge. Lt. Governor Elizabeth Roberts recently announced a statewide initiative to grow the sales and consumer base for locally owned businesses during these challenging economic times. See her list of Buy Local RI “Main Street” events. Check the Kidoinfo list of local holiday craft shows.

9. Plan your holiday baking
— for home, for school, for gifts for the community. Check the Kidoinfo Food category for even more ideas and cookbook reviews.

10. Write a letter to Santa (if you believe). Did you know if your child sends a letter to Santa and includes a return address, he or she will often receive a letter back via the post office?

11. Make a gingerbread house–from scratch, from a kit, or as in our house, hacked together.

Read books by Jan Brett.

13. Remember to squeeze some healthy eating into the whirl of holiday parties and cookie baking. Here is a list of super foods to eat.

14. Introduce your kids to
the Nutcracker story with books, music, a show, or make it a family movie night.

15. Participate in community giving.
Check Kidoinfo or your local church, school, and businesses for ideas.

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  • This is a “call to arms!”, asking all art lovers to support Festival Ballet Providence by attending The Nutcracker this month! Dec. 12 -14

    As the economy continues to falter, it is more important than ever to support local non-profit arts organizations – especially those whose performer’s livelihoods depend on audience support. It is not cliché or trite – but fact- that art and culture serves as the foundation for any civilized, flourishing and progressive society.

    Providence is an official RenGen City . I am very much looking forward to seeing the Nutcracker this year. Although times are tight, the Nutcracker will be an outlet for me personally.

    Call 401.421.ARTS or order online at http://www.ppacri.com

    Student Rush tickets available 2 hours before curtain for a 50% discount

    For a $10 discount per ticket, mention code word “Clara” when ordering tickets

  • If your kids like trading cards (like Star Wars, Sports, etc.) you can open some packs and hide individual cards. Also last time I checked Job Lot, they had some cool mini magnifying glasses for under $1, lots of stickers and some mini books.

  • Oh, and one more thing! As a new small business owner, I especially appreciate point number 8 of shopping locally and buying handmade. With the economy tanking, shopping locally is vital to the growth and survival of RI businesses. THANKS, so much, for pointing this out!

  • Thanks, Anisa! I love this count down to the holidays article. I’ve either forgotten some of the things that I should be doing with my toddlers or have entirely neglected them in years pas, so this article helps me get back on track. Thanks for sharing! Here are a few more advent calendar ideas: custom made hairbows for girls or hand knit socks for boys(a 2 in one treat), stickers, action figures recycled from their growing toy stash and nutritious non perishable snack foods like dried fruits, etc.

  • We started our K-info inspired advent calendar today. (One day late!) Tiny red (handmade! for maximum Anisa-y-ness) envelopes. Each has (or will have) a clue inside regarding the place to look (for example, “Look in your underwear drawer”) for a small treat (eg one Hershey’s kiss, a quarter…) I need ideas for things the kids can find–cheap, small things. Anyone?