The Christmas Hunt

Clue on a paint can!

Clue on a paint can!

You might wonder if our whole opening gifts ritual is over in about 20 minutes with only three gifts per child but actually it goes on for a very long time with the grand finale of “The Christmas Hunt.”  Here’s how it works:

Each child has two gifts under the tree (the book and the game) and the third gift, the TOY, is hidden somewhere in the house or yard or one year in a neighbor’s garage!  My husband is in charge of the clues.  Good thing because my creative energies are about drained by Christmas morning 🙂

When our kids were young, the clues were pictures cut out from magazines or hand drawn.  An ad for a can of Comet would lead to under the bathroom sink, a drawing of one of our lamps would lead to the next clue and finally a picture of a stove would lead to the oven where the wrapped gift was hiding.  He usually does about five clues per gift.

One year a bicycle was waiting in the neighbor’s garage and the final clue was a garage door opener so we all traipsed down the alley still in our pajamas under our coats until we found the right garage!

As our kids grew, the clues became more elaborate and often involve other languages, puzzles to solve, math to compute and often a voice or email. You just never know…  The whole family trails each hunter till the gift is spotted then we all return to the living room to see what the surprise is.

Over the years the “toy” has turned into a special asked-for or surprise gift but the hunt still goes on as it has all these years for any adult children who are in our home on Christmas morning.  When the grandchildren pop by later there is a small one for them too as the hunt tradition carries on at their house too.

It is one of our family’s favorite traditions!

Hope for the Best,


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6 Responses to “The Christmas Hunt”

  1. 1 Judy December 19, 2013 at 5:29 PM

    Can I come to your house for Christmas!!! That sounds like so much fun!! Hmmmm… maybe i can think up some good clues??

  2. 5 Peggy Angelino December 31, 2013 at 8:34 AM

    We have had birthday hunts in the past. I like this idea for future grandkids-and I bet our kids would love it as memories surface! Thanks, Tish.

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