Christmas Eve Box Ideas for Children

Christmas may feel a bit different this year, but no matter what twists and turns the year's brought, it's still the most magical time of year for children.

Sparks of festive joy can be found in the simplest of moments. Be that writing their letter to Father Christmas and posting it to the North Pole, crafting paper decorations for the tree, or singing jingle bells while icing gingerbread men.

Come 24th December, excitement will be bubbling as they eagerly await the arrival of sleigh bells and a certain red-nosed reindeer. Add to the magic with a new tradition - opening a Christmas Eve box. Originating from the German tradition of opening gifts on Christmas Eve, it’s the perfect way to lift spirits and make staying at home this Christmas special.

Here’s our guide to what to put in a Christmas Eve box for toddlers & children.

Christmas eve box


Anything can become a Christmas Eve box if you use your imagination! Upcycle a box or tin, or for surprises of all shapes and sizes, we recommend turning one of our book carts into a Christmas Eve wagon.

Expect squeals and smiles when you wheel out an adorable deer or fox filled with delights! Our wooden pull-along carts are a playful alternative to a traditional wooden Christmas Eve box. They’re available in seven shapes - a deer, a fox, a cat, a hedgehog, a dog, or our new designs this year: lion and tiger. Add some festive trimmings and a gift tag, and hey presto your cart is ready to fill with presents.

The best thing about our Christmas Eve carts is that they’re reusable. Wheel yours out every Christmas and even at birthdays or Easter, take it foraging in the garden, or fill it with books for a year-round reading buddy.

Christmas eve box for kids


When it comes to preparing a Christmas Eve box, we like to stick to a golden rule of five ‘somethings’ to build anticipation, rather than take away from the stars of the show on Christmas Day. Here are our favourite Christmas Eve box ideas:

Something to wear - Snuggle up the night before Christmas with festive pyjamas, slippers, or a fluffy dressing gown.

Something to do - Pop a small toy in their box or cart to distract them from sleigh watch. We’ve got lots of small gift ideas to choose from - wooden farm animals, cars, play food, personalised aprons, and more.

Something to eat or drink - How about some homemade biscuits to nibble or a hot chocolate gift set to warm them while watching a Christmas film? If you’ve got room, you could also include a festive mug and plate to leave out for Father Christmas, once they’ve polished off their own treats.

Something for Christmas Day - Fold up one of our personalised stockings or sacks and place it in their box or cart. The thought of it magically becoming full will ignite even more excitement for the Big Day!

Something to read - Christmas dinner isn’t complete without all the trimmings, likewise, reading a festive story the night before Christmas is a must! Once they’ve hung their stocking or sack and hopped into bed, cosy up and read together. This soothing way to end the day should help send them off to sweet dreams of Father’s Christmas’ sleigh.

Christmas Eve box, Christmas books and treats for Father Christmas

With uncertainty in the yuletide air this year, we need more festive cheer than ever. Sharing a Christmas Eve box with your little one is one way to make the holidays extra magical. After all, those moments of joy, love, and wonder created during the festive season will be those they remember long after they stop believing in Father Christmas!

For more gift inspiration take a look at our Great Little Gift Guide.

Thanks to Sophie, @treloweth, for road testing our Christmas Eve carts with her little ones, Henty (5), Otto (3), and Bodhi (1).

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