Inside: Looking for activities to do with your baby this Christmas? It’s never too early to join in fun family traditions. See our comprehensive list that includes 100 ideas for baby’s first Christmas.
At our very first Christmas with a baby in the house, I didn’t know what things we could actually do as a new family. As a child, I remember the various Christmas traditions my family participated in that made this a very joyful and memorable time.
I just didn’t know how to go about it with a very young child of my own.
What can you do with a baby at Christmas?
If this is your first Christmas with a baby or toddler in the house, you are in for a treat. This is indeed a special time of year to make memories you will cherish for a lifetime.
You might have an idea of the fun kids bring around Christmas, but are wondering like me, what can you specifically do with a baby at Christmas?
And this is a question that many parents of young children wonder every holiday season. They want to partake in all the festivities and fun present everywhere but also have a small child to think about. Things like sleep schedules, developmental needs and age limits come to mind.
No parent wants to deal with the aftermath of overstimulated, sugared-up kids, managing meltdowns and dealing with the exhaustion and tears that some of the Christmas activities can lead to…especially at such a young age.
Because I understand the reality behind this, today I wanted to share a comprehensive list of practical and age-appropriate ideas babies and toddlers can partake in during Christmastime.
100 Things to do with a baby on Christmas
This list includes 100 ideas of Christmas activities, crafts, and traditions for young children to give you a VARIETY OF OPTIONS that actually do exist for you. Most of these are very simple ideas you can incorporate into your everyday life during the Christmas season.
However, that does not mean you should do them all. In fact, I strongly recommended you pick and choose your favorites only to make Christmas with a baby more manageable and truly helpful — I would narrow down to about 25 to keep it manageable. You can even add these picks to your baby’s advent calendar.
Baby-Made Christmas Art and Decorations
Start off the holiday bucket list with fun Christmas crafts for babies and toddlers you can use to decorate the house and even turn into a lifelong keepsake to treasure for years.
1. Make a keepsake ornament with baby’s fingerprints as the Christmas lights.
2. Decorate a plain glass ornament with your child’s handprint and name.
3. Order a classic handprint kit to preserve for many years.
4. Make a salt dough snowman using footprints.
5. Decorate the house with mistletoes using your baby’s feet.
6. Use baby’s tiny fingerprints to make a candy cane ornament for the tree.
7. Order a custom ornament with your baby’s name.
9. Use baby’s handprints to create a snowman family.
10. Make a reindeer footprint craft.
11. Make a Santa handprint craft to decorate.
12. Create a Christmas wreath using baby’s handprints.
13. Hang personalized Christmas stockings.
14. Use baby’s extra diapers to create a cute diaper cake centerpiece.
15. Make a family handprint Christmas tree layering small hands on top of big.
16. Create a baby Jesus handprint craft to send as a card.
17. Decorate the house with angel handprints.
18. Add a classic poem verse to your Night Before Christmas footprint craft.
Start Fun Christmas Traditions with Baby
One of the best things you can do with your new family is to start creating traditions and memories you can build on each year. If you need some inspiration, here are a few ideas to help you begin.
19. Start a brand NEW family tradition unique to your growing family (the keepsake ornaments listed above are great ideas).
20. Try a baby and toddler-approved advent calendar.
21. Read Christmas stories together.
22. Listen to Christmas music together.
23. Recite Christmas poems like this one.
24. Sing Christmas songs.
25. See Christmas lights in the neighborhood.
26. Pick out baby’s first Christmas outfit.
27. Let baby have a taste of homemade Christmas food.
28. Dress up – festive holiday attire — hats, red/white, reindeer ears.
29. Bake Christmas cookies.
30. Read Twas’ the night before Christmas on Christmas Eve.
31. Donate toys.
32. Let baby open something special on Christmas Eve.
33. Wear Christmas pajamas on Christmas Eve.
Baby Christmas Activities
Simple fun Christmas activities you can do with a baby from newborn to 2 years old.
34. Point out shapes and colors on ornaments
35. Let baby play with jingle bells — supervision always.
36. Buy baby jingle booties and hear him make music while kicking.
37. Try ornament exploration – incorporating baby safe ornaments to reach for, touch and feel.
38. Let baby play with Christmas bows — sticking to legs, and toes.
39. Play outside in the snow together (these make truly magical photos).
40. Explore pretend snow inside — using a baby safe recipe.
41. Make a Christmas sensory board for baby.
42. Make a Christmas sensory bottle.
43. Make a Christmas box with lights baby can look up to.
44. Let your baby and toddler decorate a mini felt Christmas tree.
45. Let your baby and toddler play with a Christmas ball sort.
46. Make a baby-friendly sensory bin using colorful Christmas colors.
47. Use baby’s handprint to make Christmas cookies.
48. Make a Christmas themed baby mobile
49. Let your baby and toddler “rearrange the tree” with this kid-friendly Christmas tree.
50. Let baby play with an age-appropriate nativity playset.
51. Introduce the true meaning of Christmas as baby plays with a nativity puzzle set.
52. Or work on hand-eye coordination play with this Chunky Christmas Tree puzzle set.
53. Watch a Christmas movie with baby — sure baby probably won’t watch all, but a few minutes is a nice excuse to snuggle up together.
54. Host a simple Christmas themed playdate.
55. Let baby play with wrapping paper after opening presents — sensory experience.
Christmas Photo Ideas for Babies
Wondering what Christmas photos you should take with baby to create lasting memories? Check out some of these all-time favorite Christmas picture ideas.
56. Have a Christmas family photoshoot.
57. Take a picture of your baby in a Santa hat.
58. Take a picture of baby with Santa.
59. Take a picture of baby by the Christmas tree.
60. Snap a photo of baby reading a Christmas book.
61. Snap a photo of baby mesmerized by the Christmas lights.
62. Take a picture of baby watching the first snow falling.
63. Take a picture of baby snuggled up dressed in a Santa costume.
64. Take a picture of baby in a box, dressed as the best present ever.
65. Make sure you tell daddy to snap a shot of mommy and baby celebrating together.
66. Try Elf-yourself baby version.
67. Create a Christmas photo album to commemorate baby’s First Christmas.
68. Send Christmas photo cards to family.
Want to get out of the house with a baby? Here are a few Christmas excursions and day trip ideas fun to do during Christmas. These are one area I would keep to a minimum to avoid meltdowns or issues that happen with schedule changes.
69. Visit a Christmas tree farm.
70. Take baby to a baby-friendly Christmas show at the local library.
71. Visit Santa if the baby can handle it.
72. Bundle up and go for a winter walk around the neighborhood.
73. Participate in a mommy and me holiday music class.
74. Take baby to church.
75. Visit the elderly or lonely neighbor — it’s amazing the joy a baby can bring.
Gifts for Baby’s First Christmas
Need a few baby gift ideas? We have you covered from personalized gifts and ways to stay warm to age-appropriate gifts for newborns and beyond. Note, if you opt to shop in-store with baby, allow ample time and pack accordingly — the holiday shopping can get a little crazy. You can also choose to shop from the comfort of your home, while baby naps (my personal favorite!)
76. Give something soft and cozy to snuggle with.
77. Order a Christmas bib for baby to wear for holiday meals.
78. Find the perfect stocking stuffer for baby.
79. Buy baby’s first Christmas onesie.
80. Get baby some board books.
81. Gift baby some warm Christmas-themed bedtime jammies.
82. Buy baby a new holiday sippy cup to enjoy at mealtimes.
83. Dress baby up with some warm holiday leggings.
84. Make a personalized gift for baby.
85. Contribute to baby’s piggy bank.
More Christmas Ideas for Baby
Want even more ideas and things to do with a baby or toddler this Christmas? Focus on spending time with loved ones and celebrating at home. Below are ideas for creating a calm and peaceful experience for you and baby during this Christmas season.
86. Introduce gentle Christmas scents – mint, evergreen.
87. Relax with a cup of hot cocoa while feeding baby.
88. Document all of baby’s firsts (use a camera or simply observe with your eyes).
89. Remember to unplug from phones, tablets and computers a little each day and just spend time in the present.
90. Laugh with baby and celebrate this time of togetherness.
91. Share baby with family – whether traveling or staying home, let that little light in your life.
92. Choose peace instead of stress when things get hectic.
93. Simplify your schedule and choose things that bring you joy.
94. Don’t compare or focus on what everyone else is doing.
95. It’s okay if things don’t go according to plan, try to let go and accept that there’s no such thing as perfect.
96. Show your spouse kindness around the kids.
97. Say something special to all members of your family throughout the season.
98. Participate in a nativity story in town, church or right at home.
99. Wish your family and friends a Merry Christmas and peace on Earth.
100. Enjoy the best gift ever: your baby.
I hope this list will provide a little clarify and remind you there is still plenty to do on Christmas with a baby. As long as you pick and choose practical ideas that work for your family and lifestyle, the options are endless.
Ana, a mom to three rambunctious little boys, has supported thousands of women throughout their pregnancy and motherhood journey since 2012 as a prenatal and postpartum educator at MommysBundle.com.