My girls were thrilled with Albany Winterfest yesterday. Loved the jugglers and trampoliners and fireworks, and they came home with prizes that were not nearly as crappy as what we usually get from, say, Chuck E. Cheese. In fact, I just ran upstairs to check and see if they were perhaps not even made in China, but. . . oh, well. Still, the games were free and really, when was the last time that your kids got four prizes and not one of them had broken by bedtime? Yay.
But meanwhile, I thought that I’d throw out some holiday ideas that you can enjoy from the comfort of your own home.
I don’t know if anyone caught this lovely little segment on NPR’s Morning Edition, in which they interview an author who’s just written a book about the “science” of Santa. What is so unbelievably awesome about the piece is that it sounds just like your average boring-for-kids news segment, except they spend the whole time speaking as if Santa definitely exists. It’s wonderful if your child is getting a little bit doubtful about the whole idea.
My five-year-old heard that her friend got a Real Letter from Santa, and immediately began to pine for her own. A letter would have involved obtaining festive stationery and a stamp as well as creative writing–but luckily, this video website’s been going around my moms’ group. You fill out questions and get your very own personalized video from Santa. That’s right: I see you your special letter, and I raise you a personalized web cam! Take that, punk! What do I care if random companies are compiling data on my children and their gift wishes? Both of my girls were thrilled. Two warnings, though: first, Santa basically tells your kid (s)he’s going to get what you name, so when you fill out that part of the survey, try not to mention the big “headliner” gift if you can help it. Also, I thought that my photos downloaded correctly, but apparently they hadn’t. So one daughter had her picture in Santa’s book and the other had some generic holiday drawing, which was a little sad. I’d advise viewing any videos before showing the kids just in case.
Meanwhile, two other sites are obvious, but perhaps you didn’t think of them for holiday fun. On Pandora you can listen to holiday music—which you’ve probably figured out if you already listen to Pandora or something like it. But if you’re a novice, you’ll see holiday stations down below the ads when you click the link. And on hulu right now you can let the kids watch fun stuff like A Charlie Brown Christmas and The Muppets Christmas Special. For a minute I thought you’d be able to watch the cute SNL “Santa’s My Boyfriend” song while your kids missed all the double entendres, but then they had to drop the B-word near the end. Well, maybe you can do what I do when we listen to the Juno soundtrack: just have a coughing fit.