Hanukkah is once again upon us, but it’s important to remember that the holiday is not all about gifts. Instead of raiding the isles at Target for eight nights of Fisher-Price-Leapfrogging-Nerf overload, focus on more meaningful, but still fun and festive, activities for the family.
1st Night: Create something. Make your own menorah. Apartment Therapy has five awesome DIY menorahs that you can make with the kids (the Lego one is brilliant).
3rd Night: Give something. The holidays are a great opportunity to encourage giving to those that are less fortunate. Kids can pick out a toy from the store to donate to Toys for Tots, find a coat to bring to the Park Slope Library for NYC Cares, or collect canned goods for City Harvest.
4th Night: Play something. Why not purchase some new games for the family and have a festive game night? No cell phones, no televisions, no video games. Just spend some old school, quality time together. You could even kick it up a notch and get little treats for the winners.
5th Night: Kid’s Choice. Let the kids choose what to do one night. Whether watching their favorite film with popcorn and twizzlers, or tossing together some stellar homemade pizzas, they’ll get a kick out of the fact that they’re in charge.
6th Night: Read something. Listening to a story is one of those activities that transcends age. Purchase some new books that can be revealed throughout the night, and read aloud. If your kids are old enough, take turns reading. This could also be a great opportunity to pull out some old favorites that haven’t been read lately.
7th Night: Party Night. Invite friends and family over for festive night of community.
8th Night: Memory Night. Have loved ones (even those who live out of town) send their favorite memories. They can be funny or sentimental. Put the memories in a box for each member of the family, and take turns pulling out one memory at a time to read aloud. You’ll be amazed at the fun and laughter this night will bring and it’s a great way to close out the holiday.
What are your Hanukkah traditions? Let us know in the comments!