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How To Host A Kids' Christmas Party

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by Shannon Meyerkort (subscribe)
Writer. Storyteller. Find out more at or join me at
Published December 10th 2012
Don't be a Grinch this Christmas
Somehow I found myself offering to host a Christmas Party for my daughter and all her pre-primary friends. Ten little girls plus siblings, straight after school. Clearly I was mad.

Kids, Christmas and sugar, a combination for fun if there ever was one

However with a little bit of pre-planning and imagination, it went off without a hitch (except for the fact I can't count to ten) and all the kids had an awesome time.

Christmas food is easy because it presents itself with so many themes (no pun intended).

You can go traditional (rum balls, shortbread, roast turkey) although kids don't tend to eat that much shortbread these days, the rum balls might be dangerous territory and the roast turkey is probably overkill.

Thinly slice watermelon, then grab a Christmas tree cookie cutter (or angel or snowman)

Instead, go for a simple red, green and white theme or use you Christmas cookie cutters to make festive shapes from watermelon and sandwiches.

Everything looks extra jolly if you put it on a Christmas platter (available everywhere for a couple of dollars).

The Christmas platters were $2 from a discount shop (so were the felt place mats)

These are (shop-bought) mini pikelets with a spoon of red jam and half a strawberry.

These take only a few minutes to make

These holly themed biscuits are made from Marie biscuits, with a generous layer of white icing, two spearmint leaves and the 'berries' are made from thinly sliced red liquorice. You could also use Jaffas.

If you're a bit more adventurous in the lolly aisle you can make snowmen out of marshmallows and reindeer heads with jaffas for the nose, Smarties for the eyes and pretzels for the antlers.

You can't have a kids party without games, and while I toyed with the idea of Musical Snowflakes (like musical statues but with a tenuous Christmas link and perfect for half a dozen very 'girly' girls) and Santa Says (like Simon Says but you get to wear a silly red hat) I made the mistake of actually asking my daughter what she wanted.

Pass the parcel,' she said.

But it's a Christmas Party, not a Birthday Party,' I argued.

'It's Jesus' birthday,' she countered. Touche.

Oh so jolly and festive... but will the kids actually appreciate it?

I made sure though that all the prizes were Christmas themed, including chocolate Santa's, pencils that said Merry Christmas, a sheet of Christmas stickers I cut up into small pieces, and for the larger 'prizes', some small Christmas craft packs I picked up for a few dollars from Spotlight. Everything else was from Coles and Woolies.

I know there are people (myself included) who believe that there should only be one prize in pass-the-parcel and kids need to learn that you can't win all the time… but I am also one of those people who get totally carried away at Christmas time and want everyone to be happy. You can see how there is a lot of conflict in my life.

Moving on.

When there are six year old girls involved, you have to include some craft activities. My personal favourite - because it generally isn't that messy - is making Christmas angels.

Perfect if you are afraid of paint, like I am

The wings are made from doilies (found at Woolies, Red Dot and Spotlight) cut in halves.

The dresses I pre-cut from origami paper I picked up in a $2 shop in Sydney, although Christmas paper might also do the trick.

The heads are simply circles cut from craft paper.

Then you just need to provide some scissors, glue sticks, textas (and if you're brave some 'gems') and leave them to it.

Little girls love making Christmas angels

Another 'slightly' more messy craft idea is to make reindeers out of handprints. Here is my version.

I think this reindeer would give my kids nightmares

It's a bit creepy when done with adult hands… it looks much better when kids do it. But the combination of paint and kids and party makes me light-headed, which is why we didn't do it.

I know! It's another one of those things that kids now expect at the end of a party (whatever happened to a kiss on the cheek and a polite thankyou). But since I am a card-carrying member of Party Bags Anonymous, I couldn't help but make Christmas cracker goodie bags for everyone.

This is Number 3 eating her sisters' crackers

You can either make your own crackers out of toilet rolls and Christmas paper, or you can do what I did, and buy some, then carefully prise them open and stuff them with even more lollies and toys. They also looked particularly festive piled high in a wooden basket.

Be like Santa and check your list twice. I inadvertently missed a child when labelling the crackers and it was only dumb luck and some quick work with the liquid paper that meant that everyone had something to take home.

Always have an extra game up your sleeve. 'Santa Says' is a winner as you don't have to prepare anything (as long as you have a spare prize).

Best $2 I spent this year

If the kids are going to be outside, don't forget to go all Tinselator on the cubby/swing set etc. I bought a $2 box of Christmas baubles and hung them from a tree in the front yard.

They look great, and since I tied them on so well, will probably still be there next Christmas.

I hope you and your families all have a wonderful, safe, joyful and mess-free Christmas. Good luck with the last one.
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Why? It's Christmas! The original party season
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Your Comment
You are the best, Shannon! So funny and so thoughtful (and you give great tips). Merry Xmas.
by s.she (score: 1|10) 2505 days ago
Love your watermelon cut with Christmas cookie cutters, looks great and such a simple idea.
by Susan Jackson (score: 2|763) 2503 days ago
Fantastic! Thank you for sharing. Your fabulous & funny. Have a lovely Chrissy.
by Megz6 (score: 0|4) 2501 days ago
Great ideas! Thanks for the inspiration
by annet (score: 0|7) 2503 days ago
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