Several friends and I are planning on doing the 12 Days of Christmas for a lady who really needs some pampering right now. She is sole care-giver to her husband, who is a double amputee, has diabetes and is on dialysis everyday. We are wondering what are some things we could give her to correspond to each of the 12 days. It doesn't have to be fancy or expensive, can be cute or funny. Just something to let her know we are thinking about her. Any suggestions? We will be starting on the 14th of December, so time is of the essence.
Connie from TX
Clean the house, yard, basement, garage, etc., give her a break (time off), take her shopping, do her shopping, do some errands, take her to church, buy her favorite candy-snack, fix some meals and freeze them for later, or spend time with her. It would be very Christian if you did this every week, not just for 12 days. I am sure if you put her in touch with a local church it could be worked out. (11/01/2004)
Since she has been his sole caregiver, give her things that she can use to pamper herself. Like bath items, gift certificates to get her nails done, coupons for free gourmet coffee, etc. I'm sure she will appreciate them! (11/02/2004)
If her husband needs 24/7 care, offer to stay with him. Other ideas, prepare a meal that she can freeze for those nights when she is too tired to cook. How about homemade quick bread, flavored cream cheese, cut fruit and gourmet coffee for Christmas morning. Movie GC (either rental or theatre). How about a set of homemade coupons she can use throughout the year for homemade meals, chores, fix-its, etc. (11/02/2004)
By Linda L.
I think one big thing would be to arrange for her to have a whole day off to herself, to do whatever she wanted to do. You could hire a nurse for the day, or have one or two of you offer to stay the day with her husband. Can you imagine how she would enjoy just getting out for the day with no worries? (11/02/2004)
I think trying to match the song lyrics would be lots of fun! The eight maids a milking could be a milk bubble bath or milk soap, or "maid service" (friends pitch in to do housework). Four calling birds - how about some phone cards? Three french hens could be a homemade chicken dinner, with french bread, delivered (or prepared in her home) by friends.
Your friend is very lucky to have you all in her life. You are doing a wonderful thing! (11/12/2004)
By Becki in IN
We do this idea every year and we are a family of 8 so money is tight, but it brings cheer to those we sponsor at Christmas here are some of our suggestions with prices:
By Sara from MT
I got these ideas from various places. Sorry about the length. I would love some new ideas too, so please post if you come up with something else. We do this every year and love it!
Here are a few ideas.
Be on the lookout for little trinkets. You'll be amazed at how many things you can make work!
Another idea for any of the days is photo albums for their photos. Maybe a generic album with some scrap book paper or stickers with the subject of that 12 day.
I did this a few years ago for a friend. Her husband had broken his leg and couldn't work (salesman), her sister had passed away and she became guardian of 4 children on top of her own 3, and her refrigerator had gone on the fritz while they were visiting relatives over Thanksgiving. Luckily, her husband was willing to get involved and I would drop off gifts for 3 or 4 days and he would hide them until the appropriate day. Of course he never saw who was leaving the gifts 'by the time I got to the door whoever it was had gone'.
She said afterward 'It was the only thing I looked forward to that year. I just didn't know how I was going to cope with everything, especially for the kids. They also couldn't wait until I got home to see what had come that day, it helped keep their mind off of missing their parents so much. They really had something to look forward to.'
It also made Christmas really special for me. Just knowing I had helped her through a rough time. (11/22/2004)
I do the 12 days of Christmas every year for someone. It is fun to get gifts for the person that correspond with the number day. The twelfth day could be a Christmas tree made out of 12 Hershey's kisses taped to a paper in the shape of a tree. Party poppers are inexpensive and usually come in a pack of eight. A six pack of her favorite soda. A $5 gift certificate to Starbucks. A mesh bag filled with 10 tealight candles in holiday colors. Just some ideas! (11/27/2004)
Last year I did the twelve days of Christmas for these two girls whose parents had just recently been divorced. One good idea I thought of is to buy some fleece, cut the edges and tie them, to make a really cute blanket. You could also do a Christmas movie or CD. Make donut snowmen (where you get the powdered donuts and stack them together with toothpicks, and then get colored frosting to decorate), hot chocolate mugs with hot cocoa mixture in there is always fun. Those are just a few ideas, maybe they'll help. (10/20/2006)
I used this poem and taped each night to the gift. I altered some of the poem verses to my liking on certain nights. It was so much fun and my kids had a blast. This is a tradition for sure.
Night 1 (pear bread)
Twas the first day of Christmas and all through your house,
Not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse.
'Cept suddenly one little soul did appear,
It is your Christmas friend bringing you holiday cheer.
Tonight calls for a partridge for your pear tree,
But partridges are tough catches, you see.
Now, how 'bout some pear bread, instead of the bird.
Indeed it tastes good, or so we have heard.
Tonight the first night, this sign you have been given,
One ring of your doorbell, not six and not seven,
But from every night hence, one ring of your phone
Will signal a gift from your own secret gnome.
Now beware of this warning - your friend will be here,
But you better not look, or he'll disappear,
And then all your gifts that were carefully planned
On some other front porch they will surprisingly land.
Night 2 (turtles and Dove's chocolates)
Tonight we have turtles and doves coming your way.
Eat all the chocolate you may.
Because in your family you have quite a few,
We've left on your doorstep more than just two.
This glad Christmas season is so full of fun.
We're happy to share with your family, then run.
How grateful we are that you're playing our game.
You'll now find that Christmas won't be the same.
Night 3 (French horn ornaments from $1 store)
Night 3 arrives, but we are not in France,
And three French hens don't come by chance.
So for your family we have given to thee,
3 French horns to put on your tree.
Night 4 (gold coins)
Four calling birds, we can't pay the fare,
For all we have is a purse full of air.
As Christmas approaches, and calls you must make,
Don't use these gold coins or the phone you may break.
Night 5 (ring pops)
On the fifth day of Christmas with things rather tight,
It's important to us that we all travel light.
Gold rings are too heavy (and so are gold buckles),
So please be content with sweet rings on your knuckles.
Night 6 (Cadbury chocolate eggs)
Six geese a-laying -- an interesting sight.
One of them squawked and they all took flight.
What they left in their nest,
you'll just have to look,
But with these you won't want to cook.
Night 7 (goldfish)
The 7th day of Christmas and we are half way done,
Remember no peeking or you'll spoil the fun.
On this day of Christmas, how nice it would be,
If seven swans a swimming your family could see.
The pond was quite empty since the swans have gone south,
We only found goldfish to put in your mouth
Night 8 (Milk Maid caramels)
On the eighth day of Christmas, we're busy as a bee.
Eight maids-a-milking, no where do we see.
But there in the barn we spy a tasty sweet,
Milk Maid caramels, what a treat.
Night 9 (Christmas CD)
Nine ladies dancing would be too big a crowd,
Besides their music is way too loud.
We have for you Christmas songs,
That you can listen to all season long.
Night 10 (caramel corn)
Ten lords a leaping would be an awesome gift,
But they got stuck while jumping through a white snowdrift.
We had to be content, you see,
to watch the popcorn fly.
So we've added a sweet topping to it for you to try.
Night 11 (hot cocoa mix)
Those eleven pipers piping reminds us of our plumber,
To leave him on the doorstep would be a real bummer.
Now make your water piping hot, and fill your cups with care.
We're giving you some hot chocolate we know you'll love to share.
We simply can't believe this game is almost through.
We've had a jolly time bringing these gifts to you.
With only one more night, don't you wish you knew,
Just exactly who we are and why we're doing this for you?
Night 12 (I found a drum candle at the $1 store)
Christmas Eve has arrived, and on this our last night,
One dozen drummers would be a grand sight.
But the noise of their drums would hurt your head,
So eat all these cookies we bring you instead.
And so we wish you a joyous Noel,
We know that you're hoping our name we will tell.
But our name stays a secret, we just cannot share.
It wouldn't be right, no it wouldn't, so there!
Have you considered looking for a collection of tree ornaments symbolising the twelve days of Christmas? I would think that they shouldn't be too hard to find. (11/21/2006)
A friend was a recipient of the twelve days of Christmas. She received a piece of the Nativity each day with baby Jesus on the last day. She was so touched when she found out it was her mom who delivered the gifts. (11/27/2006)
A good idea for the fifth day is using 5 canning jars and filling them with different kinds of treats (we used five different kinds of popcorn) and then covering the tops with Christmas material and screwing the regular golden rings over it. (12/19/2006)
By hi there
I did this for my boyfriend this year:
These are terrific ideas, but has anyone ever thought about the fact that the 12 days of Christmas begins on December 25 and ENDS on January 5. Those are the 12 days of the Christmas Season. January 6 begins Epiphany when the Christ child is revealed to the world. (11/19/2007)
We do something similar at work called the "12 working days of Christmas." With inexpensive ideas for the 12 working days leading up to our Christmas party on the 21st. Ideas such as: "Let it snow!" and bring a snowglobe to sit on your desk, or "Don't be a Grinch" but wear your green day, "Share the warmth" with hot apple cider day, etc. We don't really go by the song, but just a way to spread a little holiday cheer at work! (11/27/2007)
My guy is very much into music, so lot of my choices are CD or event based including:
4 calling birds (4 CDs of jazz divas)
5 golden rings (olympic reference since he cycles)
6 geese (The Oscar Peterson Big 6 at Montreux CD)
9 ladies and 10 lords (the Nutcracker performance)
11 pipers piping (brass ensemble performance)
12 drummers drumming (steel drum and percussion ensemble performance) (11/28/2008)
The 12 days of the Christmas festival really begins on Christmas day and goes until Jan. 6. Focusing on the spiritual rebirth and hope that is Christmas could probably really help your friend. It would be good to include inspiring quotes about Christmas and the deep meaning for the soul at this time of year going from Winter solstice to a gradual returning of the light. Crystals, essential oils, tea, gift certificates, etc., put into little pouches, one for each day, ending on the 6th with perhaps a party and a 3 King's cake! (12/12/2008)
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