Houston

December GoList: Best Things to Do With Houston Kids This Month

It's the time of the year when the Christmas decorations Target put on display in October are finally appropriate. The holidays are here! We have you covered with our guide featuring events and things to do around Houston this month from where to see holiday shows and The Nutcracker, FREE holiday events for the family, and places to take photos (or eat breakfast) with Santa.

There are tons of fun festivals in December, and lucky for us Houstonians, many of them have thousands of pounds of "snow" for kids to play in. As a native Houstonian, I didn't see snow until I was in my late teens, so at least you can still give your kids a white-ish Christmas. Also, events that started in November like Zoo Lights, Moody Gardens' Festival of Lights, and Magical Winter Lights in La Marque are still up and running throughout December.

Make sure to keep an eye on our calendar for daily events, and if you haven't already, sign up for our FREE weekly newsletters to receive our latest posts and things to do around town. Read on for the best Houston events this month.

Holiday Volunteering Opportunities for Houston Families

Many children worry about whether they are on Santa’s naughty or nice list. One way to help your little elves feel confident about their spot on the nice list is to encourage them to volunteer. Volunteering as a family is a great way to teach children that the holidays are about more than just presents while also creating a meaningful family holiday tradition. The holiday season is a busy time for many families with so much shopping, cooking, and socializing to do, not to mention all the exciting winter festivals and other seasonal events, so we’ve rounded up a variety of easy ways your family can volunteer locally or through national organizations.

Weekend Fun for Houston Kids: Christmas on Commerce, Dickens on the Strand, Dec. 1-2

Thanksgiving has passed, December is almost here, and it's beginning to look a lot like the Christmas season in Houston! Hopefully, you snagged some awesome Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals and your Christmas list is in good shape as we head into the holiday month. 

To help you fully get into the Christmas spirit Santa is making his rounds to all the local malls and holiday hotspots, and we've gathered all the places he's stopping and compiled them into a neat little list so you can easily check off where you want to take pictures with Santa. We also rounded up the best public holiday light displays in the city, so you can cruise around town checking out the festivities. 

Our event calendar is your #1 resource for planning daily activities and is currently chock full of awesome holiday happenings. And did you know that you can submit your own event to our calendar?! Make sure you also sneak a peek at our December GoList for all the events happening this month that you don't want to miss and subscribe to our weekly newsletter to have all of the content on Mommy Poppins delivered to your inbox in one or two emails per week. 

Now bust out those calendars, because it's time to start planning out the first weekend of December!

Party City Opens Toy City Pop-up with Hot Holiday Toys

The holiday shopping season is in full swing, and the folks behind Party City are offering tired parents one more shopping outlet in 2018. Toy City, a seasonal pop-up similar to the Halloween City shops also owned by Party City, opened this fall with about 50 locations across the country. Expect to find some of the season's hottest toy items, from LOL dolls to Legos, at Toy City.

A number of the Toy City locations opened within former Halloween City stores and have been busy converting the shelves from spider webs and broomsticks to Play-Doh and Transformers. 

Kid-Friendly Restaurants Open on Christmas Day in Houston

Gathering around the table with family and friends to enjoy a festive meal is a hallmark of the holiday season, and one that is often enjoyed multiple times throughout the November and December months due to Thanksgiving and Christmas occurring in rapid succession. However, having two big holidays so close together can become overwhelming for even the most dedicated cook, and there's no shame in needing a break from the kitchen come Christmas Day (and no judgment on our part if you treated yourself to a Thanksgiving dinner out, too!).

We've rounded up a variety of restaurants around Houston that are opening their doors on Christmas Day, spanning everything from fancy brunches to low-key diners, so you can take a break from the kitchen and enjoy a meal out with the family. And don't forget to check out our holiday guide for more events and things to do during the season.

30 Best Vacation Ideas for Families Who Want to Avoid Winter

Ready to ditch your winter blues for a family-friendly vacation in climates warmer than here? 

From perpetually wet feet to relentlessly bundling (and unbundling) your kids with layer upon layer, the need to escape grows for many parents as the winter season drags on—and on. Even those families who don't live with the finicky four-season cycle might prefer their vacation with a side of palm trees, rather than fur-trimmed snow boots. So whether you're seeking to escape the cold or just don't want to vacation in it, we've rounded up more than two dozen of our favorite warm-weather destinations that beckon you to shed your parka and bask in the sun.

Read on to find great all-inclusive resorts, beaches, and charming cities teeming with culture that might not offer bathing suit weather in January but certainly no snow!

Where to See and Take Photos with Santa in Houston

My family's holiday traditions wouldn't be complete without the annual trip to snap photos with Santa. Some years we have dealt with full-on meltdowns, faces twisted in horror and arms flailing out to my husband and me, and other years the event has been a breeze, smiles plastered on to faces and eagerly waiting to whisper what they want to receive for Christmas. Either way, the tradition of taking photos with Santa is a holiday staple, and we've rounded up a variety of places you can find the big man.

We also have even more fun events that are sure to make your holiday season a magical one:

Without further ado, here is where you will find Santa Claus this year in Houston.

Thanksgiving Weekend Fun for Houston Kids: Nov. 24-25

From all of us on the Mommy Poppins Houston team, we want to wish you a very Happy Thanksgiving! We are so grateful for all of you who support us by reading our content and sharing our articles. Y'all are the best!

For those of you who may have waited until the last minute to plan your Thanksgiving feast and are suddenly looking to outsource it, we have you covered! Just check out our round-up of kid-friendly restaurants open on Thanksgiving for an easy fix to feeding the family this holiday. 

If you're officially ready to start kicking off the Christmas holiday activities, we are your one stop shop for all of the events: 

Looking for even more activities and events? Head over to our Fall Fun and Harvest Guideevent calendarNovember GoList, and a roundup of 20 FREE things to do in November for an exhaustive look at what's happening in Houston. You can also subscribe to our FREE weekly newsletter to have all of the content on Mommy Poppins delivered to your inbox in one or two emails per week. 

Have an event you want to share? We would love for you to submit your own event to our calendar! 

Now let's check out all of the awesome post-Thanksgiving activities Houston has to offer this weekend. 

Guide to Viewing Houston's Annual Thanksgiving Parade With Kids

Houston's annual Thanksgiving is back with its larger-than-life floats and entertainment. The 2018 69th Annual H-E-B Thanksgiving Parade begins at 9 a.m. in Downtown Houston on Thanksgiving Day (Nov. 22, 2018) with two grand marshalls who own our hearts: Jose Altuve and James Harden. Plan on joining the thousands of Houstonians and visitors who will line the streets on parade day? We have you covered with everything you need to know. But before getting into all of that, know that despite the large crowd, it's not as stressful as you might think to grab a good spot and enjoy the festivities.

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