A couple if weeks ago we morphed our little writer's workshop into a "Santa's Workshop" for Jack (which he promptly re-named "Jack's Workshop"). I stocked it with all the supplies he needs to make a couple of gift items: bookmarks and bracelets. I chose these two projects because he knows how to make them all by himself. And since he can be self-sufficient, he delights in all sorts of behind-closed-doors-hustle-and-bustle while he goes about his merry-making.
Of course, we made a list (for checking twice), hung a calendar for counting down the days, added a Santa hat, and placed a red felt drawstring bag nearby for filling with the loot.
Jack is a master at making bracelets. I stocked him up with some beads and elastic thread. I help tie the occasional knot (with my eyes closed *wink,wink*) and then he whisks his creations into little gift boxes.
I made simple bookmark stencils by cutting out cereal boxes. Jack traces around a stencil onto a piece of card stock, cuts out the shape with scissors, colors it in, punches a hole on top, and strings a ribbon through the hole.
He let me take a rare peek at his top-secret process as he was making a bookmark for his teacher the other day:
He "wraps" the bookmarks by slipping them into brown paper lunch bags secured with string. And then he makes his own gift tags by cutting card stock and punching a hole. On one side he stamps a greeting (I made him some DIY holiday stamps by pulling apart tiny alphabet stamps I got in the Target dollar bins a while back, rearranging the letters, and rubber-cementing them onto a little block).
On the other side he signs his name, with love.
The other cubbies are stocked with other essential supplies, including blank greeting cards, envelopes, and a holiday-related word ring (more about word rings here).
To get him even more in the spirit, a couple of cubbies are stuffed with elf-related paraphernalia (or par-elf-ernalia, as the case may be) including a bunch of stuff we made from Prep and Landing printables (did you see Prep and Landing? Too, too cute!) and a little sleigh with my favorite elf ornaments from childhood.
Whew! That sounds like a load of stuff, but can I tell you, once we had the idea, it all came together in a flash. And if I say there has been hours of cheerful busy-ness in this festive area, I assure you I'm not exaggerating. So. Much. Fun. Especially with some holiday music playing in the background.
I love the writing involved, as you might have guessed. But I'm even more excited to see my boy learning about the reason for the season, so to speak. He is joyfully preparing for some serious giving. And that's a gift in and of itself.
How are your kids getting into the holiday spirit?