Christmas Crackers: A Holiday Tradition + Make Your Own!

December 8, 2014

The tradition of the Christmas Cracker! #Christmas #Tradition

Christmas crackers, have you ever celebrated the holidays with them? Me either. I’ve heard about them from time to time but never actually celebrated with them. There’s a first time for everything right? I know what you’re thinking Christmas crackers are something you eat around the holiday right? Yeah, I kind of thought that too. Even looking for them in store I got a few strange looks from the employees but when I explained them you could see their eyes light up and the ‘Oh yeah!!’ moment appeared.

Still confused? Here’s an explanation: English crackers, more commonly known as Christmas crackers, originated in England during the mid 1840’s and are often used to decorate place settings during festive events and holidays. Although not as widely used here in the United States, these charming party accessories make for fun party décor and cool party favors!

After figuring out what Christmas crackers were (thank you Wikipedia), I went in search of them this weekend. My first stop was Grandpa Shorters here in Petoskey. I walked around the store first thinking they’d just jump out at me but after taking a minute and asking a helpful employee informed me that J.W. Shorters carries them. So, I walked a few doors up the street and asked the friendly J.W. Shorter employee and voila! I found a wide and unique variety of crackers, perfect for your holiday parties!

How fun are these? And, not just for the holiday’s they come in a variety of colors and styles! Each could be filled with: traditional party hats, a corny joke, stickers and a whistle. Fun!

The tradition of the Christmas Cracker! #Christmas #Tradition

After my hunt for the Christmas crackers I tracked down Jennifer Shorter and spoke with her about holiday traditions regarding the Christmas crackers. The Shorter family has been celebrating with Christmas crackers for years, “We do them every year, sometimes twice! Always for Christmas dinner, sometimes also for  breakfast. We have a blast with them – laughing at the jokes, wearing the paper crowns, playing with the toys or other treat inside.”

The tradition of the Christmas Cracker! #Christmas #Tradition

They love them so much Jennifer and her husband even gave them out as party favors at the wedding!

Now, this got me thinking. The adult version of these would totally freak out my 4 year old so why not splurge for the adults but then make a few for the kids  that they can enjoy without being terrified of the actual crackers in the real ones. It’s not like they are terribly loud but my 4 year old is afraid of everything, she used to be a screamer. You know the kid you look at in a store and they are terrified of you just because? Yeah, that’s her. She’s totally better now but I still think she’d be better off with a homemade version – add some confetti, tissue paper and maybe some fun trinkets and there you have it!
DIY Christmas Crackers for Kids! #DIY #Christmas #Tradition

Materials Needed –

Wrapping paper – perfect use for last years wrapping paper!
Confetti – I made my own by cutting other pieces of shiny wrapping paper and tissue paper into smaller pieces
Stickers, a cute note, some glitter (all are optional so feel free to add anything kid-friendly and holiday related!)
Toilet paper rolls or old paper towel rolls cut in half

Step #1 – Cut the wrapping paper a few inches wider than the toilet paper/paper towel roll halve (see collage image).

Step #2 – Roll the toilet paper roll up in the wrapping paper and twist one end so that it stays shut. Fasten with the ribbon and snip the ribbon ends shorter (see photo).

Step #3 – Fill the open end with the goodies – stickers, glitter, confetti, a small note, etc.

Step #4 – Twist the open end closed and fasten with another piece of ribbon.

That’s it! Super easy and a fun surprise for the kiddos!

DIY Christmas Crackers for Kids! #DIY #Christmas #Tradition

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