After opening the wrapped presents I showed the boys the treasure map and the first clue to finding their "treasure." I bought the paper and aged it after drawing the clues.
The map had the first tag attached to it. The tags were designed on the computer using a digital treasure map design and Victorian Pop-Up Card template from ScrapGirls. There were three tags total (I kept it simple since the boys are little). Each tag had a clue and an actual photo of where the next tag would be.
We placed the tags the night before after the boys were down and when we were putting out the rest of the gifts.
Then Christmas morning my sister and I put the chests at the bottom of the stairwell after Little Man had gone downstairs, and closed the door until it was time for him and Ethan to find them.
The hunt was fun, not too long, and the boys had a lot of fun playing with their treasure chests. Each got an age-appropriate book about pirates, an eye patch, a vest, a bandanna, a hat, a sword, a compass, a bottle with paper to write messages, a coin pouch with play money, a pirate ship playset, a telescope, a hook, a pirate puzzle, and a picture frame. Little Man also got pirate tub toys and a pirate Mr. Potato Head set. The whole idea came to me after finding all the different things in the Target dollar section. Then I got the chests 40% from A.C. Moore and stained them and added their initials.
My Mom got into the pirate theme herself, she sewed each of the boys a pair of flannel pirate pajama bottoms. She also made them the movie Cars pajama bottoms. They turned out great, and Little Man has already worn them quite a few times.
After presents we all had cookies and cake for breakfast with eggnog. Then it was time to clean-up and take in all of our gifts. Later we enjoyed a ham dinner, and each other's company. And that was our Christmas 2007!