Easy Holiday Fun for Preschoolers

We're coming down to the wire -- have you finished all of your holiday prep yet?

Here's an idea that will keep the kids out of your hair for hours and costs next to nothing!

Some of the links on this site are affiliate links. This means if you click on a link and purchase something, I'll receive a small affiliate commission at no cost to you. Thanks so much for supporting my efforts with this blog!

Gv came up with this activity last year.

I thought it was just some brief stage she was in, but it's continued to last the past twelve months and she's gone completely nuts with it leading up to Christmas.

What is it that has kept her so busy these past few weeks?

Playing "presents."

Every time I wrapped a new present for someone last Christmas, Gv asked if she could have a bag, or tissue paper, or wrapping paper and a bow to wrap up her own gift.

Since I hold onto these things from gifts we get, I have quite a decent stash, so I'd hand over one of the more battered bags and some extra-crumpled tissue paper and let her go to town.

She'd usually find something from her room to wrap up, although sometimes she would create a gift from several items.

A favorite from last year. Plastic cockroach in a jar. She had the giggles like crazy for this one, since she knows I hate cockroaches!

When Christmas Day arrived G and I not only received our real gifts to each other, but a variety of odds and ends curated by our little elf.

As the year went on, she would often ask me for a bag and tissue paper to make presents for a friend's birthday (real or not) or for her dolls or stuffed animals, or for herself...she was always playing birthday party or something and keeping herself busy with gift games.

But then we got our tree up and she has spent every available minute working on her presents.

This might not look like a lot of gifts to you, but do you know how many of these are real presents? Seven. The rest are all Gv's play presents! I'm even noticing one she's hidden up on the tree!

Not only is she wrapping up gifts, but she's also creating gift tags and cards from our box of index cards.

Shhh! Don't tell Grammy, but this one's for her. I don't usually save wrapping paper, but we'd had several large pieces from last year that I hung onto for Gv to play with.

It's starting to get a little out of control, but since this activity has kept her occupied long enough for me to get everything checked off my Christmas to-do list, I'm just letting her go with it.

Since not everyone is crazy-frugal like me and keeps a collection of old gift-wrapping supplies, I figured I should mention this idea just before Christmas, so that you can collect everything you need over the next few days.

Don't throw out your wrapping leftovers! Save them -- at least until you take your tree down -- and let your little ones play present all the live-long day.

Even busted bags will work! This one has tape all down one seam, but it's still perfect to play with!

Then, consider keeping some of these supplies after the tinsel's all been packed away. It's easy to fold up gift bags and tissue paper -- you can even tuck them all inside one bag for storage -- and then you're ready with a great idea whenever the rainy-day "I'm bored" blues hit at your house.

When she ran out of gift bags, she moved on to shopping bags!

Not only is this little game just plain fun, it's also a way for small hands to practice those writing skills (even if it's just scribbling) in a natural way when they create the gift tags and cards.

So Merry Christmas to you and yours...and enjoy the gift of a few hours to yourself by introducing this fun play idea to your kids!

Do you save gift-wrap supplies at your house? Have your kids ever had fun playing presents before? I'd love to hear!  Either leave a comment below or email me at lisahealy (at) outlook (dot) com.

Also, if you don't want to miss a single minute of great tips like this and all the fun around here, be sure to sign up for free updates and then look forward to having each post delivered right to your inbox.

Linked up with: Favorite ThingsOver the MoonShare the Wealth SundayDishing it & Digging itWhat's for Dinner?Family Joy Blog Link-Up,  Literacy Musings MondayPractical MondaysHomeschool Nook Link UpHappiness is HomemadeMerry MondayMotivation MondayWhat'd You Do This WeekendMeet Up MondayTotally Terrific TuesdayTogether on TuesdaysShow Me Yours LinkyTasty TuesdaysLittle Learning Link UpTwo Uses TuesdayHip Homeschool HopLou Lou Girls Fabulous Party  Tuesday Talk, Wonderful WednesdayA Little Bird Told MeEverything Early Childhood, Creative MusterParty in Your PJs,What to Read,I Am Pinnable, Christian Bloggers Link UpThis Is How We Roll, Creative WaysHearts for HomeCreative Exchange 100 Happy DaysTry It Like It, No Rules Weekend Blog PartyTune in Thursdays,  Booknificent ThursdaysThursday Favorite ThingsI'm Lovin' It, Inspiration SpotlightHome MattersPretty Pintastic PartyWeekend PotluckAwesome Life FridayCreative CollectionThe Beautifully Creative Inspired Bloggers Pit StopWeekend Traffic JamPin Me Party,  From the ArchivesFamily Fun FridayFriday FrivolityBloggers SpotlightMake My Saturday SweetWeekend Wind-Down Party,Friday Features LinkyFuntastic Friday Best of the WeekendSweet Inspiration Link PartySmall Victories SundayYou're Invited Love to Learn Tuesdays