Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Christmas Calmer

Let's face it:  Christmas may be the most wonderful time of the year, but it can also be stressful.

The stress, of course, isn't only for the grownups.  Kiddos feel it too.  Their routines are a little changed and they also pick up on the adult edginess.  With all the excitement of Christmas - seeing Santa, buying presents, decorating the tree, seeing twinkly lights - also comes a few moments of over stimulation    And that's not even considering the sometimes late nights.  Or the yummy treats.   Overstimulated kids are about as fun to be around as a lost Wise Man wandering through the desert.

To combat a little of this stress, today we made what I am calling the Christmas Calmer.  Basically it is a meditation jar with a Christmas theme.

Christmas Calmer Directions

  1. Gather materials.  You'll need a plastic bottle with the label removed, glitter and/or confetti and a hot glue gun.  If you want to make the jar move more slowly you'll also need clear glue (see step 5 for more ideas). 
  2. Head to the backyard and find a pine bough.  This is a good time to talk about evergreen trees and notice the difference in needles.  In just our backyard we found four different varieties of evergreens!
  3. Stuff the pine branch into the bottle.  
  4. Add a few teaspoons of glitter.  We also added star confetti for more sparkle and visual interest. 
  5. If adding glue add it now.  You'll need almost the whole bottle of glue to make it slow down.  You could alternately use glycerin or liquid soap.  I didn't have any of these things on hand, so we skipped this step.  
  6. Fill the bottle with water. 
  7. Use hot glue gun to secure the lid. 
  8. Hand to your child and let him know if he is ever feeling a little overwhelmed he can get his bottle, shake it and watch the glitter settle until he calms down.  
This has been a huge hit at our house.  Milo has been asking for his Christmas Calmer.  Leo loves watching the glitter, too.  Even I enjoy shaking it and just relaxing as I breathe and enjoy the season. 

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