I love Christmas Eve. So much excitement in the air. Yet, that’s also the problem, there’s SO MUCH excitement in the air with little kids who can hardly make it through December 24th for the huge anticipation of Santa arriving at night.
You need things to keep kids busy. Preferably active things that tire them out and convince them to snooze at bedtime. The Great Candy Cane Hunt is the perfect answer. It’s now a staple annual tradition in our house and whoever is visiting on Christmas Eve Day gets roped in. One year we even all dressed up in matching hats to up the memorable factor.
We run it much like an Easter Egg Hunt that is hosted by Elves. We say that the “Big Elf” plans this and hides the candy canes at night.
1. Take it outside! Dress up in your warm clothes and get outside to burn the over-the-top holiday excitement off. Snow makes this activity even more fun!
2. Scatter lots of mini Candy Canes everywhere. Hide in trickier spots for big kids and all over the lawn for younger ones. If you can do it the night before it’s easier to pull it off. Beware – squirrels do appear to like candy canes….
3. Give your children a bucket or bag to collect candy canes. Wire baskets are a pain, avoid the type like in our picture as the candy canes just slip through.
4. Make it fun! A competition for who collects the most is fun. Or set up areas per person. So split kids into teams, an older and younger set in each team to help one another.
5. Colour code it: to make sure everyone gets a fair amount you could buy different types of candy canes – rainbow ones for one child, red and white for another. Or tie ribbons on the mini ones and designate colours by child.
6. This is a fun neighbourhood activity or perfect for a large family to do together.
7. Next – head inside to bake up Candy Cane Crisps to use up the copious amounts of Candy Canes you now have on hand!