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I can barely contain my excitement when Christmas season rolls around. The lights! The music! The food! The love! The decorations! And with two small kids, it’s even more magical. I find so much joy in passing along family traditions from my own childhood…and I find joy in creating our own family traditions, too.
Every year, the day after Thanksgiving, Charles climbs into the attic and passes down bins after bin of Christmas decorations. I catch them as they slide down the rickety ladder, setting them aside and getting after the kids to “STOP TOUCHING!” as they try to open everything. We lug the bins inside, and with the kids breathing down my neck and turning into grabby little vultures that feed on Christmas decorations, we pull everything out of the box, I oooh and aaah excitedly over all the decorations I bought the year before for 80% off and had forgotten about, and the kids start looking through all the books.
That’s right. I put our Christmas books away every year. And come November, we pull them out and make a big productions of putting them away in the Christmas Book Basket, which sits where the kids can easily access all of the amazing stories it holds. It makes me really, really happy.
This year, we added a new story to our collection! I surpised the kids with a new book, Once Upon a Northpole Christmas, and some *super* fun toys to go along with the story. Available at Walmart, they toys are all SO CUTE and SO FUN – and all go along with a Hallmark movie that will be coming out soon! These Northpole by Hallmark toys were the perfect surprise for my kids, who are craving Christmas as much as I am.
The story is about a little elf living at the North Pole who helps bring Christmas cheer to a busy, overworked world (I know the feeling, Little Elf). I thought that since the story took place at the North Pole, it would be fun to create our own little North Pole candy…and they ended up being perfect for eating alone *or* mixing with hot chocolate. Also? This was a super easy, kid-friendly activity that got us all in the holiday mood!
These were entirely inspired by the cute little candy cane-looking North Pole in the story (see below!).
You only need three ingredients to make these: Candy Canes (the peppermint sticks without the hooks would be best, but I couldn’t find any so we just broke off the ends), white chocolate, and snowflake sprinkles (but any sprinkles would work).
SO easy to make. Pour your sprinkles into a bowl and melt your white chocolate chips. Supervise the kids as they dip the tips of the candy canes in the chocolate and then the sprinkles. Place finished ones on a sheet of wax paper. If you are in a hurry to have the chocolate return to room temperature, simply stick in the fridge for a few minutes…and you’ll be good to go!
I originally intended on these just being fun treats to go with Once Upon a Northpole Christmas, but they were way more fun when paired with some homemade hot chocolate!
I also bought the kids a couple of other fun toys when I picked up this book. Without a doubt, the favorite was the Avalauncher. To say this toy has been non-stop entertainment for the last several days would not be an exaggeration. To say I am putting it away with the Christmas books on January 1st, not to return again until November 2015, would also not be an exaggeration. 😉
It’s official. We are ready for Christmas, and excited to start a new family tradition (reading Once Upon a Northpole Christmas and kicking off the Christmas season with Candy Cane North Poles FOR THE WIN!).
What family traditions do you have in your family? Do you create new ones with your kids?