by Tammy Taylor~
Several years ago our kids requested no more toys for Christmas for our grandkids. They already had so many toys that the mountains of additional toys they received each Christmas was beginning to be overwhelming. So we started a tradition of Experience Gifts for them. We’ll gather them all up and go do something fun with them. We’ll take them out to eat, do a fun activity together and bring them to the Homestead to have a slumber party with their cousins.
Sometimes the activity is a live Christmas play, the Children’s museum or a drive-through Christmas light display at the lake. This year we took them to a Ninja Warrior Obstacle Course and also Rock Climbing. This annual experience gift is so much fun for them and us too!
But when we gather as a family on Christmas day, although the grandkids already received their gift a couple of weeks earlier, I hate that there’s no gift for them on this day. So I decided to make Santa Sleighs for them this year. A cute gift and a little sumpin’ sweet for them too.
I used a Kit Kat bar for the base and candy canes for the sleigh’s runners. Then I arranged small fun-sized candy bars on top of my sleigh, added a chocolate Santa and wrapped it all with ribbon, topped with a bow. I use a hot-glue gun to add a tiny dot of hot glue to hold everything together.
Assembling The Sleigh
First I’ll add the candy bars to the top of the Kit Kat bar. I placed 2 fun-sized candy bars on the end of the Kit Kat bar and stacked 2 more on top of those. It helped to anchor them with a tiny dot of hot glue. The kids will be able to easily get to the candy but it will still hold everything together a little better in the meantime.
I used fun-sized candy bars, but I think it would stack better to use the single-size candy bars that are actually wrapped with foil paper. I think they’re Hershey’s Miniatures? The fun-sized candy bars I used have the tails on the ends and the package has a little air in it too. So stacking them neatly required a little working. The miniatures would stack much nicer, but probably require candy more since they’re smaller.
Add Candy Canes
Then I flip my sleigh over and add the candy-cane runners. I added a line of hot glue to the bottom of the Kit Kat bar and pressed a candy cane on each edge.
RancherMan & I discussed whether it would be easier to attach the runners first or after the candy bars were placed. He convinced me to add the candy canes after the candy bars. I’m not convinced that it wouldn’t be a touch easier the other way around. But it was still pretty easy to do this way. A quick line of hot glue & press ’em into place.
Old Saint Nick With ‘The Look’
Finally I add a chocolate Santa to the front to finish my sleigh. I get a kick out of his expression here. It’s oddly similar to a signature face our family makes called ‘The Look’.
This particular look has been used in wedding photos, graduation photos and probably every family-gathering photo we’ve ever taken together. Too funny and a perfect Santa for these candy sleighs!
When it was all assembled I used a thin ribbon around the sleigh to tie down the candy bars. I topped it all with a tiny bow.
I didn’t include it on this tutorial, but we picked up a box of Cracker Jack caramel-coated popcorn for each of the kids. Oh man, these bring back some of my own childhood memories! I loved Cracker Jack when I was a kid!
I used a thin ribbon to tie each sleigh to a box of Cracker Jack. Not only does this help keep everything together better, you know, Cracker Jack!
These sleighs are adorable – I think they turned out really cute. And I know the grandkids will enjoy them too. They’d make great gifts for teachers, co-workers, kids, almost anyone!
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