A few years ago when my bigger kids were toddlers I started our Loutzenhiser Family Holiday book also known as the Holidayopedia. It’s a well-used and quite beat up. It is constantly thumbed through, sticky-noted, and spilled on. It’s got bits of glitter, glue, and paint on it. In short, it is loved.
Inside the book there are sections for each season and holiday. At the back there is a section for birthdays too. Each section is full of recipes, craft projects, game ideas, and anything else we happen to come across. When I read a blog that has an idea I print it, when magazines come in the mail with ideas I tear out the page, and when I see a cute idea somewhere I write it down–all of those get stuck in a sheet protector in the right section of the book. (The sheet protectors are for the inevitable spills!)
I don’t work to make it neat or fancy. I don’t carefully cut the ideas out, or mount them neatly on scrapbook papers before I add them to our book…looking cute is not the purpose here, so I don’t waste any time with that.
When a holiday or birthday is on the way we pull out our holidays book and make a list of all the things we want to do to celebrate. The kids choose goodies to make with Mom, crafts, homemade gifts, and decorations to make, and activities to do as a family. The book makes it easy because all the ideas are right there at our fingertips. We don’t have to figure out what to do because it’s all there already. We DO so much more because we don’t waste time figuring out WHAT TO DO!
One of my favorite parts about it is listening to the kids remember all the fun times we’ve had as they look through the book and see the treats and crafts we made last year. . . and the year before. . . and the year before that!