Get inspired for the holidays with a 12 Days of Christmas Secret Santa activity
I grew up in a family that sings. And one of the places we sang a lot was in the car while we were driving. My Mom wasn’t much for listening to the radio, but she did sing to us and with us. I vividly remember my Mom teaching us how to sing rounds in the car. The first one I remember learning was “It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas.”
One of my favorite songs growing up was the 12 Days of Christmas. As a kid I think I was just excited when I learned all the words. It’s a really long song. For awhile there was a neighborhood we would go to to look at Christmas lights. One of the streets got together and decorated using the 12 Days of Christmas theme. Each couple of houses was a different day. It became a race to see if we could sing the song as fast as we were driving by the houses.
Something else we did growing up at Christmas was play ding-dong-ditch Secret Santa to someone we knew. We’d pick a family or two and leave gifts on their doorstep each night for several nights.
I definitely don’t sing in the car as much as my Mom did. I’m usually singing along to the radio. But at Christmas there is still plenty of caroling happening in our car. And ding-dong-ditch Secret Santa is something we’ve done off and on through the years as well. My favorite though is when we started combining our love of Christmas songs with Secret Santa. Which is how we started doing the 12 Days of Christmas Secret Santa.
As you can imagine actually finding all the items in the song would be problematic. Some years I’ve found a set of ornaments that each have the different days and we’ve gifted one ornament a night. But this year, I came up with something new. We took the song lyrics and found things inspired by each of the days. Along with all the items I also got matching gift bags and tags to hang on the bag each day with a note.
Our notes all start with “On the – day of Christmas my good friend gave to me…” Then we included the actual lyric from the song, and a cute note tying in our gift. For day one we picked a wooden Christmas Tree that we painted green. Our note says that the pear tree was too heavy and the partridge flew away, so we brought them a small Christmas Tree to decorate.
Rather than golden rings e got jingle bell rings. For the milking maids we’re gifting glass milk jars. The dancing ladies are dance stamps. And the lords-a-leaping turned into leaping reindeer. The most important thing was to have fun with the days.
For the most part we did stick to the number of items each day. Day 1 gets 1 tree. Day 2 gets two bird ornaments. Even day 3 got three rolls of French themed washi tape. We’ve got 4 Christmas themed rubber duckies, 5 rings, 6 eggs laid by the geese, and 7 swan straws. The only day that isn’t numerically correct is day 8 where the maids left 3 milk jars. There are 9 dance stamps, 10 reindeer leaping, 11 toy pipes, and 12 drum noisemakers.
We put all the items in separate gift bags, attached the tags, and they’re ready to go!
Some of these 12 Days of Christmas ideas would also make great stocking stuffers.
What holiday traditions do you follow?