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Holiday traditions for toddlers and infants


  photo by Amber Branch

Decorate the Christmas tree together – Pick out (or make) a special ornament that the kid(s) can put on the tree each year. (For small toddlers and infants: purchase a small, inexpensive artificial tree just for the kid(s) and help them decorate it).

Pick out gifts from a department store catalog – Let the kids look through a department store catalog and pick out three things that they would like for Christmas. Even if you can’t afford to get all three things, this will give you an idea of what your child likes for future occasions. (Side note -- for smaller toddlers, you may need to help them look through the catalog. Ask them questions such as: “would you like a baby doll or a coloring book?”)

Look at Christmas lights around town – Load the family in the car and drive around your neighborhood to view Christmas lights. In the mood for more lights, check out the Festival of Lights in Galveston.

Go to church – Many churches have special Christmas plays and service(s). This is an excellent way to teach your children about the real meaning of Christmas. Need a church home?  Visit one (or all) of the following locations: 

South Houston -- New Faith Church

Northwest Houston/Katy -- Church Without Walls,

North Houston -- Fallbrook Church.

Prepare a kid-friendly holiday dessert together – Toddlers are notorious for wanting to help. Whether it’s helping feed their younger sibling or helping mom set the table for dinner, they thrive off of doing “big kid” tasks. So why not set a day aside to make a special meal together. (Bonus: help your little one make a treat for their teacher or grandparents.)

Can’t think of a recipe? Try this these:

No Bake Mini-cheesecakes
1 pkg. (8 oz.) PHILADELPHIA Cream Cheese, softened
1/2 cup sugar
1 tub (8 oz.) COOL WHIP Whipped Topping, thawed
12 OREO Cookies
Cherry or strawberry pie filling (optional)

Beat cream cheese and sugar until well blended. Gently stir in whipped topping.

Place cookies on bottom of 12 paper-lined muffin cups.
Spoon cream cheese mixture into muffin cups. Refrigerate for several hours (overnight is best). Once they have been refrigerated, top with your choice of pie filling.

Substitutions: Substitute pie filling for multi-colored sprinkles or miniature chocolate chips

(recipe courtesy of

Marshmallow Snowman
White decorating icing
Hostess® Sno Ball snack
Hostess ® mini doughnuts
Decorating gel
Pretzel sticks
Sour punch sour straws
Reese’s® Miniature Peanut Butter Cups

1. Spread icing on the top of the Hostess® Sno Ball snack; place one powdered doughnut on top of the Hostess® Sno Ball snack. Spread icing on top of the powdered doughnut and place a marshmallow on top of the powdered doughtnut to make the snowman.
2. Use black decorating gel to draw eyes and red gel for the mouth on the marshmallow.
3. Insert 2 pretzels into the very top of the Hostess® Sno Ball of the snowman for the arms. Cut the sour straw and tie it around the neck for scarf.

Extras: Spread icing on the top of the marshmallow and place a Reese’s® Miniature Peanut Butter Cup on it to make the hat. These also make festive place settings and/or centerpieces.

   photo by Amber Branch

For more toddler tips and tricks click here.
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