For those of you who don't mind taking time to string popcorn for a fun Christmas tree ornament, you might consider using those bothersome packaging peanuts instead of popcorn.
If you're like most people who get packages with two tons of packaging peanuts per pound of packaged material you now have another use for them. They are easy to string and don't get as crumbly as does popcorn.
To add variety to your strings of packaging peanuts, consider putting buttons randomly on the strings too. The best buttons are the big colored coat buttons. You can usually find variety of buttons from any fabric or craft store.
Another use for buttons is to have the kids make ornaments from them. Glue, cardboard, and buttons, are the only materials needed.
You can cut shapes like pine trees and candy canes out of the cardboard and have the kids glue the buttons onto the cardboard. Most glue will dry the buttons on one side within an hour so the kids can complete the other side of their ornament project.