One memorable Christmas season my eight-year-old self spent a great deal of time sitting on the floor outside the downstairs bathroom door. I wasn’t waiting to get in. I was waiting for the Christmas surprise to come out.
When I came home from school that day, Mom told me there was a very special, large something in that seldom used room. She cautioned that if I looked under the door I would ruin my Christmas surprise. What magical delight was waiting for me? Oh, the delicious agony!
I leaned against that closed door. I sniffed for clues. I wiggled my fingers in the space between the door and the shiny linoleum. I even laid on the floor, knowing I could glimpse the forbidden fruit if my eyes accidentally blinked open. I marvel that I did not peek.
That sweet-as-the-last, slow drips-from-a-honey-jar anticipation is the kind of Christmas memory I want to make for my boys… …because maybe curiosity kills the cat—but it’s indispensable for imaginative thinkers, problem solvers and delightful childhood Christmas traditions!
After baking cookies for Santa, one of our Christmas Eve traditions is shaking packages and guessing what’s inside. This year I know our oldest will be intrigued with a “brown paper package, tied up with string.”
Both of my boys love music. Ryan and I think our oldest son is going to like finding a BOSEbuild Speaker Cube under the tree. It’s a great gift idea.
And once he opens it, he is going to love the building kit. BOSEbuild speaker cube is a super way for curious kids to explore the science of sound, from magnets to music. There’s an interactive gaming app that gives step-by-step activities for exploring and experimenting with the mechanics of sound.
Then they build a durable, high performance Bluetooth speaker that can be personalized with LED lights, silhouette covers and clip arrangements. In our case, it will be a fun, build-it-yourself family project. It’s the kind of gift that can last for years. I’m hoping the excitement of guessing will become a treasured memory for my son, just as it’s been for me.
Although I loved how important my eight-year-old self felt when I finally saw my new desk, the fun high hopes I experienced through that holiday season were even more memorable. If surprises, curiosity and discovery are high on your make-Christmas-memorable list, you can order BOSEbuild for $149 (suggested age is 8+).
And don’t forget the cookies. You can have the traditional gingerbread flavor without the time-consuming chore of doing cut-outs with my grandma’s Gingerbread Jumbles recipe. They are delicious plain but it’s easy to add fun decorations.
Easy Gingerbread CookiesPrint Pin Rate
- 1 cup butter
- ¾ cup brown sugar
- ¼ cup molasses
- 2 eggs
- 1 tablespoon vanilla
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 2 ¼ cups of flour
- 2 tablespoons ground ginger
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon of cloves
- ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
- 2 tablespoons meringue powder
- 4 cups powdered sugar
- ½ cup water
- #3 Wilton tip
- piping bag
- In bowl of a stand mixer, cream butter and sugar.
- Add molasses, vanilla and eggs; mix on medium low until well combined (mixture will appear a little separated).
- Stir in baking soda, salt, ginger, cinnamon, cloves and nutmeg.
- Gradually add flour; mix until just combined.
- Use cookie scoop to spoon large balls of dough onto cookie sheet. Press down on dough to flatten.
- Bake for 9-10 minutes at 375.
- Cool completely before frosting.
- To make royal icing, in clean bowl of stand mixer fitted with whisk attachment, add meringue powder and powdered sugar. Slowly add water ¼ cup at a time, until a spreadable consistency. Turn on high for 10-20 seconds.
- I didn’t want mine to be like a flood icing. I kept it a little thicker so I could pipe on patterns and words.