3 Non-Traditional (Toddler Approved!) Ways to Decorate for Christmas!

So, my destructive curious toddler has made decorating for the holidays challenging.  Any of you in the same predicament?  I have tubs and tubs of beautiful decorations, and years of sentimental ornaments nestled safely in their tissue and ornament boxes.  Each year I look forward to decorating the tree and gazing lovingly with a cup of warm cider, whilst nibbling on sugar cookies.

Unfortunately, that only happens on the Hallmark Channel in my house.  Finn has other ideas.  He is a very curious little guy – and after losing several special ornaments while navigating Hudson’s toddler years, my husband and I decided that we would forego our traditional tree for a couple of years and give Finn time to mature a bit.  Not only do we want to preserve our heirlooms, but we also want our children to enjoy this time and not be told “No-No” every three seconds.  We also have chosen not to fence off our tree…although, we seriously considered it!

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The good news is that thanks to Pinterest, there are a LOT of fun ideas circulating the interwebs, so just because I have a feisty fella on the move does NOT mean we can’t have a festive home!

Here are three suggestions for a fun, engaging, non-traditional way to decorate your home….and enjoy the season with your little ones!


1.  Decorating with Light

A recent church service that I attended was focused on LIGHT, and I couldn’t help but smile – It seemed appropriate that since Jesus is the Light, and THE reason for this season, why not decorate with light!

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All you need for this simple decoration, is a strand of white twinkle lights (you also could use multi-colored, but I personally am not a fan), some tiny 3M command strip hooks or push pins.  Then you just pin/hook as you go!  Make sure you start at the bottom, then just zig zag upward and shape as you go. Very simple!  We decorated our wall with our stockings and set up all of our Christmas toys, Little People Nativity and stuffed animals on a bench below. It was a completely interactive set up, and zero stress!  We did not have to say “No!” a single time!

2.  Decorating with Paper.

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This year, we used paper crafts and washi tape to create our Christmas wall. This was a lot of fun to put together, and Hudson had a great time helping!  I purchased a 3-pack of Scott brand washi tape at Target for about $5.  It came with green polka dots, narrow solid red, and red & white candy cane stripe.  I taped off the green tree part, just eye-balling it, then added in red and striped “ornaments” using tape.  The whole thing took about 5 minutes and it’s so cute!  Hudson got into the spirit and made the trunk out of construction paper, as well as making his own little paper tree in the corner.  To finish off our wall, we added art work from the past 8 years…I love looking back at the crafts we’ve made together.  It’s a perfect Christmas display that brings in a new modern twist (with the washi tape) with the “heirloom memories” that I love so much (Hudson & Finn’s past art!).  To frame it out – I hung a pennant banner from Target that we have used all. of. the. time. in this house.  Best $5 ever.

3.  Decorating with Felt

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Photo/Baby Cred: Amanda Hendrix

This adorable felt Christmas tree is super cute, and a lot of fun for babies and toddlers to have a very hands-on experience with Christmas!  You can make your own, or purchase one (from Target) like the one in the picture.  Felt sticks on felt, so you can get really crafty and make it super personal for your kiddo, if you’d like.  All craft stores sell felt by the yard (for the tree) and you can pick up 8×11 sheets for less than $1/page to cut out individual ornaments.  I just love how your baby/toddler can create, create, and create for the entire season.

What other non-traditional decorating ideas are you all using this year?  I’d love to add to the list – so leave a comment below, on Facebook or Twitter.  Or better yet, tag us {@austinmomsblog}on your Instagram pictures!

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