Winter break is right around the corner. With the kids at home when they would normally be at school, you could be the one expected to provide entertainment.
Have no fear. Scout Life is here.
The Scout Life website has tons of stuff to keep you and your family (and maybe also your Cub Scout pack?) going this holiday season.
From fiction to fun and games, here are my favorites.
Holiday sugar cookies
One time I made some homemade peppermint bark, brought it to the BSA office for our holiday party, then proceeded to drop most of it onto the floor.
Don’t be me.
Instead, check out this recipe for sugar cookies, with extra tips (including videos!) on decorating them to make them look just right.
A family that bakes together bonds together … and also might argue over who gets to eat the last of these delicious cookies, but that’s fine.
The Cowboy’s Christmas Eve
This piece of short fiction from writer Jack Schaefer (best known for his novel Shane, which was later adapted into the legendary Western movie of the same name) tells the story of young Stubby Pringle, a “19-year-old, 10-foot-tall cowhand” who sets off on a Christmas Eve adventure and ends up learning the true meaning of the holiday season.
The story first appeared in the December 1963 issue of what was called at the time Boys’ Life. The Cowboy’s Christmas Eve was reprinted in our magazine three times over the next 40 years, and for good reason: It’s a timeless classic that’s as every bit as entertaining today as it was back then.
It takes a few paragraphs to get used to Schaefer’s sparse language (One example: “He has shape of bear in dimness, bundled thick against cold.”) but we promise it’s worth it.
Click here to enjoy a version of the story specially formatted for Scout Life’s online fiction collection.
The perfect hot chocolate
Technically, you can drink hot chocolate all winter, but doesn’t it taste better during the holidays?
This hot chocolate mix is giftable — it consists of seven different and equally delicious dry ingredients that won’t go bad as long as you give your gift away in a reasonable amount of time.
And when you add the ingredients to hot water? Yeah, it’s delicious.
(I recommend making two jars, one to give to someone else and to give to yourself. You deserve it.)
Homemade snow globe
I was fascinated by snow globes as a child, and based on our observations, they’ve lost none of their appeal over the years.
This guide will help you and your child create a homemade snow globe. You’ll need a glass jar, glitter and a small toy or figurine (bonus if it’s holiday themed) small enough to fit inside.
(The figurine has to be glued to the inside of the jar’s lid. Hot glue is best, and it’s best if it’s applied by an adult.)
The end result makes a great gift, unless you just want to keep it for yourself (which is probably what I’d do).
Homemade winter wreath
Wreaths with ivy and berries date back to several hundred years BC. At some point, they became associated mostly with the holiday season, and we aren’t complaining.
They still look great.
This homemade wreath is cheap and easy to make, but also just challenging enough to allow a child some creativity. This is another craft assembled with hot glue, so adults will likely want to take over that step.
Holiday song lyrics quiz
Do you think you know holiday music? Take our quiz either with your family (as teammates) or against your family members (in a friendly competition.)
I got 8 out of 10.
(Are you sure it isn’t “roll the ancient yuletide carol”?!?)
Jokes, jokes and more jokes
As a longtime writer for Scout Life, it never bothered me once when people told me their favorite part of the magazine was the jokes and the comics.
And now, the editors of Scout Life present to you, 100 funny holiday jokes and comics. Brought to you by the best joke writers of them all: Scout Life readers.
The Scout Life holiday gift guide!
When my kids were younger, the Scout Life managing editor used to let me … er … my kids … test some of the toys for the annual gift guide.
My kids are too old now, but trust us: These gifts are still being tested by real-life kids!
My favorite … I mean, uh … the kids’ favorite … from 2022 is the new Batmobile. Cooool!
You know what else makes an excellent holiday gift? A subscription to Scout Life! Click here to gift one to the Scout in your life.