Holiday joy.

It’s a phrase we hear a lot this time of year and Christmas is all about things that bring joy to our hearts.
People suggest keeping your Christmas errands simple and minimalistic to avoid stress and I agree but if you find joy in giving gifts and spending time wrapping them, then that’s just fine. Others might find happiness in shopping or baking a million Christmas cookies. And you know what that is okay, too!
I am one of those people. I love Christmas shopping. I love going to Christmas Eve church service and then rushing over to celebrate with my husband’s family and then traveling to be with my family. And I like baking and decorating wayyyy too many cookies with my brother. I don’t find the holiday hustle to be stressful.
If you’re kinda like me then I have a couple fun ideas to add to your to-do list to enJOY the season even more.

Salt Dough Ornaments:

This is a fun one and a great activity to include your husband or kids (or best friends) in. But easy enough of you want to do it by yourself too haha.

And this year my dear friend Hilary taught me that you can bake these in the microwave to make it even easier.

Here’s how you make the dough:
Combine the ingredients below…
4 cups flour
1 cup salt
1 1/2 cup water
(If after you mix the dough it feels a bit sticky just add a little more flour to your mixture.)
Once the ingredients are combined, roll out portions of the dough.
Now here’s the fun part…Gather up all of your favorite cookie cutters and start making shapes.
I’ve had a leg lamp cookie cutter (from a Christmas Story) that I’ve wanted to use for awhile but haven’t gotten around to yet. This was the perfect time to put it to use.
Once you have your shapes made place a few ornaments on a microwave safe plate. Poke some small holes in the dough to prevent the dough from bubbling.
Then if you want to hang the ornament use a straw to make a hole for an ornament hook to go into later so you can hang it on the tree. I decided to wait until the end to hot glue some ribbon on the back to use as a hanger.
Finally put the plate of shapes into the microwave for 2 minutes and 30 seconds. Depending on the thickness of the dough they may need more or less time.
Now let them cool. Careful the plate will get hot.

Making them pretty:

Once they are cool it’s time to get creative. Paint them up however you want.
This is where it gets especially fun for the kiddos. Let them choose a few ornaments to paint however they want and make sure to sign and date the back which will make a great memory for years to come.

For the really little ones:

If you’re like me and have a kiddo who isn’t really painting yet. There are still ways to get them involved in the Christmas crafts.
We made a few round ornaments and had the little man put his foot or hand in some paint and leave his print on the round ornaments. Something quick and easy but you will still have that as a memory even for the itty bitty ones.

Now hang your favorites on the tree or have the kids give them as gifts to grandma and grandpa!

Do you ever make Salt Dough Ornaments? Did you know you could microwave them?