We’re almost through the first week of December! Can you believe it? I’m so excited for the start of the season & looking forward to fully enjoying it all this year. Christmastime is my absolute favorite.
Today I’m going to share a bit of last year’s decor before I get on to this year’s tomorrow. I never had a chance to share my dining room totally set up for Christmas dinner. It was so special to host a family dinner on Christmas Eve & gather around the candlelight, but my most favorite part were the homemade Christmas crackers. I made mine a bit more meaningful than the ones you can buy & it put a wonderful perspective on the entire dinner. I plan on making that one of my traditions & will remake them this year too.
Anyhow, here’s some of the dining room shots!
I used a huge blanket scarf to cover the majority of the table. It’s on my kitchen table this year. I lined up a hodge podge of candlesticks & holders that ran all down the length of the table. I mixed in a handful of glittered pinecones as well.
My hippopotamus salt & pepper shakers really stole the show. Aren’t they adorable? Target find!
Cause you know, I wanna hippopotamus for Christmas, only a hippopotamus will do…good old Shirley Temple.
I made the plates from Dollar Tree plates & brown vinyl, the instructions are here.
I chose green Ball jars for festive drinking glasses & placed a Christmas cracker at every place setting. Everyone loves getting a mini present to open at dinner! Especially if dinner comes before presents.
For some reason, we put the Christmas tree up in the really awkward corner of the dining room. Not quite sure why, but I din’t repeat that this year. Do not fret!
I’d never even seen a Christmas cracker until my first Christmas with my husband’s family when we started dating. They open them up every year with dinner & everyone gets one on their plate. Being the holiday loving gal that I am, I was thrilled about their tradition & thought I needed to bring it over to my family’s holiday celebrations asap. It took me a few years to finally figure out how I wanted to do it, but I love how my idea played out.
Traditionally, the crackers come with a toy, a joke & a bright colored, paper crown. You have someone pull one end while you pull the other & they “crack” or “pop.” My crackers don’t have the “pop” factor; however, you can actually order the little part that cracks online & stick them in your crackers. They work out either way.
I wanted to do something more “reason for the season” with my crackers. So I printed out the whole Christmas story from the Bible & divided it up into sections based on how many people were attending dinner. For example, if 10 people are coming you need 10 crackers & 1o sections of Scripture. Be sure to number the sections on the backside, so they can be read in the correct order. Otherwise, things will be a big mixed up mess.
Each cracker got 2 toys & their verses to read.
Here’s how to make some of your own Christmas crackers & start a new tradition with your family!
You will need toilet paper rolls- 1 per person, ribbons, toys/fillers (candy works too), wrapping paper, card stock, scissors/papercutter, your scriptures printed out & a hot glue gun.
First measure your wrapping paper to the correct size & cut a piece for each roll. Yo want at least 3 inches leftover on the ends. Use the hot glue gun to secure the paper in place around the roll.
Cut 1 inch strips of card stock & hot glue them into the ends of the rolls.
Tie up one end of the roll carefully. Add your toys or whatever it is you’re filling these up with.
Roll up the strips of Scripture & stuff into the cracker too. Make sure they are numbered!!
Tie up the other end & curl the ribbons.
Now make enough for everyone!
You can display these in a basket or sit at place settings for a formal dinner. Everyone gets to open them at the start of dinner & then the reading starts. Beginning with #1 guests read aloud their verses in the story of Jesus birth. I cannot tell you how amazing it was to hear the story told by all of our family members as opposed to listening to just one person reading it all. We dined by candlelight & tree light & the whole experience was magical. I’ll remember it forever.
Don’t forget to pin it for later!
Does your family do Christmas crackers or incorporate the reading of the birth of Jesus in another fun way?
Share your traditions!
Merry Christmas Y’all!
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