Polar Express 2022

Our Polar Express Party was a huge hit thanks to all the help from our amazing family and friends! I’m so glad that we decided to give it a go even though we don’t really have our house set up the way we want it yet… its better to work with what you have right now and not keep putting things off until everything is ‘ready’ or ‘just right’ because that day may never come!

The kids had a fun time and are already making plans for next year! I’ll share some photos of the setup.

We had tons of delicious finger foods like:

  • Mini pigs in a blanket
  • Sweet and sour meatballs
  • Baked ravioli
  • Pizza rolls
  • Spanakopitas
  • Fruit trays
  • Veggie trays
  • Meat trays
  • Cheese tray
  • cracker/pretzel tray

We also had a ton of yummy desserts and cookies! One of my sisters came down the night before and helped me get a lot of cookies and cupcakes made. Everyone brought some of their favorite cookies/desserts as well!

For the ‘train ride,’ we used our handy little ‘movie night’ setup. We have some Dollar Tree caddies that held hot cocoa, a cup, popcorn, cookies, candy, a conductor’s hat, a bell, and a train ticket… all important items for watching the Polar Express.

These caddies are so handy for so many things and we have used them over and over again for many movie nights here at home. They’d also be great for eating in the car to keep the ‘messies’ contained.

I found these adorable mugs at Dollar Tree and each kiddo was able to decorate their own cup so there was no mixing them up… kind of a genius idea!

We had a couple of ‘guess how many’ candies set up and everyone had a chance to guess at them and win the candy! That always seems to be such a fun game.

We ate and the kiddos decorated their mugs. They then put the decorated paper on the table near the hot cocoa station so we could put them in the cups as they came through the line for the movie.

My stash needs to be restocked after last night!

Each kiddo grabbed a basket and then choose a box of candy and some prepackaged cookies. They then got to fill their popcorn holders and grab a cup of hot cocoa to enjoy. I may get some thermoses of hot cocoa ready the next time to make things go a little faster.

They then stopped to have the conductor punch their tickets so they could find a seat on the train.

My sisters brought down some outdoor lights that we were able to set up to create a snowy effect during the outdoor scenes in the movie… this was probably Shyanne’s favorite part! I’ll try to find my remote control outlets to plug them into next year to make it a little easier. I also spotted a light thingy-ma-jig at Walmart which I may check out for future Polar Express.

We also had some bells ready to enhance the sound effects during the movie… the kids enjoyed ringing their bells as well!

The only thing really don’t want to repeat was when Shyanne got ahold of someone’s popcorn and got a little choked up. She was ok and quickly forgot about it when she sat on Daddy’s lap to watch the snowflakes…she loves popcorn and had apparently eaten all of her ‘pop corn’ so she snuck into someone else’s real popcorn.

Santa didn’t come to visit this year… nor did he send any elves to help out but we had plenty of family who helped in their places. We didn’t decorate any graham-cracker houses or trains either but I don’t think anyone really missed them.

Each kiddo had a special treat bag to take home filled with plenty of goodies for another movie night at home and the adults had some goody bags of their own with some candies, pocket calendars, and mini keychain tools.

Surprisingly enough the house wasn’t a huge mess… no more a mess than after one of our ‘normal’ movie nights. We sent everyone home with as many leftovers as they would take and put away the rest. The kids are loving the decorations so I may just leave them up all Christmas!

All in all, it was a great night with family and we created some wonderful memories that our kiddos will be able to tell their kiddos about when they get older. The smiles on everyone’s faces have filled my heart up and reminded me that sometimes the simplest things can leave the biggest impressions in other’s lives… hopefully, our kiddos will remember these fun memories and pass along these traditions to their families when they get older!

We wish you and your families a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

These are links for some of the decor items that we used. A lot of the ready-made foods came from Sam’s Club and Costco… these really made life easier!


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