This post is part of the 2018 Homeschooling Through the Holidays series.
One of my favorite things about the holidays is the chance to show everyone around me that I care about them! We love to deliver little gifts to our neighbors, the kids’ teachers at church or whomever else we might want to give a little treat to.
My kids love to get involved in the process and I think it’s really fun to do together! This year we are making Snowman Hot Chocolate gift jars. Have you ever had white chocolate hot cocoa? It’s one of my favorite holiday drinks. I love how creamy it is and how well it goes with toppings – think peppermint flakes, toffee, cinnamon, caramel. The options are endless!
Add a cute snowman, who doubles as gift packaging and a cup for the cocoa, and it’ll be a hit with your friends and neighbors! Each snowman makes enough hot cocoa for about 4 servings, so you may want to gift multiple jars to larger families.
What you’ll need:
- 8 oz. mason jars
- White chocolate chips (our favorite are Ghirardelli) — you’ll need one bag per 2 snowmen!
- Black spray paint
- Scraps of black fabric or quilting squares
- Googly eyes
- Pipe cleaners in red, orange and brown
- Black craft pom poms
- Scissors and a rotary cutter (optional)
- Hot glue gun
- Label paper (optional)
- Canning funnel (optional)
Building the snowman:
The first thing to do, is to spray paint just the rings of your mason jar lids black. Paint as many rings as you want to give away. The actual lids will be covered by the black fabric to make the hat, so you don’t need to spray that part.
While you are waiting for those to dry, cut out the same amount of circles from the black fabric. I used an Ikea kid-sized bowl that my son traced (crayon works really well on fabric!). You want the circle to be at least 2-3″ larger than the jar rings so that you have plenty of fabric to stick out as the brim of the hat. When in doubt, err on the side of too big, because you can trim it down to exactly what you want when it’s on the snowman!
Decorate your snowmen using the pipe cleaners, googly eyes and pompoms. This is where my boys had the most fun! Depending on the age of your children, you can help them with the hot glue and creating the various parts of the snowmen. Get creative!
Personally, I had my boys hold the decorations while I applied the hot glue and then let them carefully adhere it to the jar. We used brown pipe cleaner folded into a Y shape for arms, orange pipe cleaner folded into a triangle for the carrot nose, a red pipe cleaner for the scarf and black pom-poms for charcoal buttons.
Each snowman turned out a little differently. A pointy nose, a sloped nose, scarf to the right or left, etc. You could even use different colors for the scarves and buttons.
Once the snowmen are complete, have your children help you measure out cups of white chocolate chips. Our favorite kind is Ghirardelli classic white, nothing quite compares to that premium chocolate! They are often on sale at the grocery store during the holidays. We got 2-for-1 pricing on these bags.
If you are a canner, then you probably have a canning funnel laying around which makes this next step really easy. But if not, don’t worry! You just might have to be a little bit more careful. Fill each snowman with 1 cup of the white chocolate chips. They should reach just to the top of the jar! Don’t worry if there is a little bit of head space, you won’t be able to see it once the hat is on.
Watch out for thieving little fingers that just want to keep the chocolate chips for themselves! You might want to keep a separate bowl for munching so your snowmen don’t get depleted!
Once your snowmen are filled up they are ready for their hats! Simply put the lid onto the jar, then sandwich the fabric in between the jar and the ring. And voila! They are complete!
Making the hot chocolate:
If you are going to enjoy the white chocolate hot cocoa for yourself, the instructions are as follows:
In a saucepan over medium heat, stir together the chocolate chips with 4 cups of milk and 1 tsp. vanilla extract. Stir occasionally until the cocoa is simmering. Enjoy with a bit of whipped cream and cinnamon or any of your favorite toppings!
If you are giving these as gifts, simply download this pdf with instructions and print onto label paper. You can also print onto regular paper and glue or tape the instructions onto the top of the jar!
I hope this project brings your family joy as you create it together and spread holiday cheer to your friends and neighbors!
What do you like to give as gifts during the holidays? I’d love to hear about it below!
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Molly is a homeschooling mom to two preschool aged boys! She loves to find adventure for her family through traveling, homeschooling and trying new things. She writes about all of their adventures at Exploring Through Life. If you are looking to add more adventure to your family, Molly shares inspiration, tips, tricks and lots of freebies! Follow along on Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest and Twitter. And access all of the freebies and unique content through her newsletter.