Here comes Santa Claus and what an exciting time of year this is – but are you ready? We asked the Mykidstime team what advice, tips and clever tricks they had up their Santa’s Helper sleeves for making your Christmas Eve easy and hassle-free!
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In my experience, Christmas Eve can sometimes end up being a bit stressful! Between remembering where the heck you hid all the presents and wrapping things at the last minute, you definitely don’t want to forget anything!
Planning everything in advance will definitely ensure everything goes smoothly for the arrival of The Big Man. So make your own secret Santa-arrival-prep-list and you’ll be all set to sit back and watch the magical expressions of wonder on your child’s face on Christmas morning!
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Here Comes Santa Claus – It’s Time to Get Ready
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Video Chat With Santa
Organise a video chat with Santa himself! Schedule your appointment with Santa, selecting the date and time you would like Santa to call you.
Once it is time for your appointment with Santa you click the link received in the email confirmation and wait for Santa to appear!
Personalised Video Messages from Santa
Portable North Pole (PNP) is an online platform used by Santa and his elves to send personalised video messages and calls, perfect for a special moment for your child.
There are several themed options to choose from, and we recommend setting aside some time to add in your child’s info (what they are hoping for for Christmas, age, interests, etc) so the video can be as personalised as possible.
Santa Wrapping Paper
If you plan to wrap Santa’s presents, be sure to pick a completely different pattern for wrapping the presents from him.
A top tip from me (based on bitter experience!) is to buy an extra roll, as you don’t want to run out and use the same as the regular non-Santa presents. You can always use it again next year or pass it on to another parent.
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Hang up a Santa Cam
If your children need a little incentive to behave in the run up to Christmas, you could create your own Santa Cam. Take a simple plain ball ornament, paint a black camera lens symbol in the centre. At the top, write ‘Santa Cam’ and at the bottom, ‘Naughty or Nice?’ – hang it on the tree so your kids think Santa Claus is watching whether or not they are behaving.
Create a Christmas Eve Box
A Christmas Eve Box is exactly what it sounds like – it’s a gift box that you give your child on Christmas Eve to open to enjoy. The origins are apparently from continental European countries, many of whom celebrate the main event on Christmas Eve itself rather than Christmas Day.
Prime the ‘Sold Out’ Present
If you have managed to secure your child’s most coveted gift, you could drop hints and prime your child that only Santa can find that ‘sold out’ present. Then on Christmas Day watch their faces light up when they realise Santa managed to secure one and went to the trouble for them.
If, on the other hand, you haven’t been successful on the gift front, we find it is always a great idea to tell your child that Santa will bring him/her something they would like just as much and is the master of finding a fun alternative.
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If you don’t have a fireplace, don’t panic – a Santa Key is the magic solution!
You hang the special key outside your front door before going to bed, and then Santa (and only Santa) will be able to easily enter through your locked front door.
Santa’s Boot Prints
Create a series of ‘snowy’ footprints around the house, leading from the fireplace to your child’s presents or from the fireplace to Santa’s snack. Get ready to make a fuss of the ‘mess’ Santa left in your house the next morning – our kids always loved seeing my (pretend) outrage!
Santa’s Lost Button
Leave Santa’s button out for your child on Christmas morning as a little bit of evidence that Santa has been to visit. Each button comes with a little note from Santa describing how he couldn’t find his button after it popped off his coat and asks you to keep it safe for him until next Christmas. Along with the note from Santa, the gold or silver button has Santa Claus inscribed on it, and there’s a little piece of red string and some snow for you to sprinkle around for extra authenticity.
Santa Left Clues
…Or go even one step further and leave lots of clues that Santa has been! The Santa Evidence Kit contains a reindeer bell, a button from Santa’s coat, one of his gloves, glasses (uh oh!) and a footprint stencil kit with glitter to make Santa’s footprints!
Santa Stop Here Sign
You might want a Santa Stop Here sign to make sure he knows to stop at your place. You can get the ones on a stick for the garden, but we also liked this nice hanging version available on Amazon.co.uk.
Or how about this cute light up version? It has a 4 hour timer on it and is available from Amazon.com.
Track Santa’s Journey
Did you know that Santa is on Twitter?! You’ll find him @Santa. Follow Santa’s journey using a Santa tracker website, such as the Norad tracker, which shows Santa’s progress around the world in real time!
Of course you will want to leave out treats for Mr Claus and his favourite reindeer. We always leave out a carrot, a cookie and a glass of whisky (!).
Why not go a step beyond a plate and personalise the experience with this lovely Santa’s Treat Board from Freja Custom Creations?
Hang up the Stockings
Of course the most important part of the Christmas Eve ritual is hanging up the stockings. We thought these candy cane stocking holders looked super cute and handy for attaching them to the mantelpiece. Find something similar on Amazon.co.uk and Amazon.com.
Magic Reindeer Food
Another tradition in our house is to make Magic Reindeer Food which we sprinkle in the back garden before bedtime.
If you are doing Elf on the Shelf in your house then don’t forget to prepare a final pose and farewell note to say goodbye til next year.
Thank You Letters
A great Christmas Eve activity is to get your kids to write a thank you letter and draw a special picture for Santa and his reindeer. Leave their creations out with the treats for Santa, and he can enjoy them while he eats!
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Catch Santa on Photo
Use an app like I Caught Santa that lets you “add” Santa to photos of your home, so that you can show your child “proof” of them being there. The app is free and available for iOS and Android.
Catch Santa on Video
If you really want to go mad, you could catch Santa on video! You need to set up a video camera with your kids on Christmas Eve. Then when they are safely tucked up in bed, film Dad dressed as Santa delivering gifts. Then watch it in the morning with the kids!
Make sure to charge your phone fully for the morning to get photos/video of the kids’ reactions.
Answering Questions About Santa
When your older child gets curious or finally asks the dreaded question “Is there really a Santa Claus?” then check this article out for tips on how to talk to your child about Santa Claus.
Final tip: make sure you have all the batteries you’ll need for new toys and gadgets in the morning bought in advance!
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Have your say! What other fun things do you do in your house to get ready for Santa Claus? Leave a comment below and let us know – we’d love to hear from you!