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YAY for the holidays! I love that sentimental feeling that this time of year brings – hearing Christmas songs you’ve always grown up with, getting to be with family, replaying traditions, and making secret recipes. It’s a joyful time of year, and it just makes me grateful, even though my head is usually spinning at all the things going on.
Two things. Although I didn’t include movies in this list, I in no way condemn the watching of traditional holiday favorites. A Christmas without “A Christmas Story” or “It’s a Wonderful Life”? You must be joking.
2. Get a head-start on your New Year’s Resolutions. What will they look like this year? Or maybe make some “Un-resolutions” – things that you don’t want to do, or things you don’t want to change. (Good things.)
3. Bake cookies. A friend made these “Walking Gingerdead Men” last Christmas, and I thought they were so fun! These Ugly Sweater cookies are fun too.
4. Decorate cookies. (These two things can be mutually exclusive!) See who can come up with the most creative design – I think this one is so cute!
5. Go through some of your old clothes, non-perishables, and possessions to give away. Lots of places are doing clothing and canned food drives this time of year. Dropping them off at Goodwill isn’t a bad idea either. I’ve heard of people having their kids do this with their old toys – what a great way to get them thinking about giving instead of getting this year!
6. Make your own presents for your family and friends.
7. Go out and buy a tree. Chop one down yourself (if you’re feeling adventurous).
8. Take pictures for your holiday cards.
9. Plan your New Year’s Eve – if not for this year, then for the future.
10. Go on a “Tacky Light Tour” – or just take a walk around nearby neighborhoods. Not that their lights are tacky, necessarily ; )
11. Invite friends over for an ugly sweater party.
12. Go to local Christmas parades.
13. Make ornaments and decor for your tree…you can make ornaments out of a simple dough, or strings of popcorn, etc. Or purchase some clear ornaments and fill them.
14. Decorate your house! This wreath is gorgeous. You may need lights, stockings, and a garland.
15. Shop for stocking stuffers. I think that’s my favorite part – to give or to get : )
16. Go see a Christmas play.
17. Offer to babysit for friends with kids, so that they can go gift shopping and have a night out.
18. Have a “White Elephant” exchange. If you don’t know how it goes, everyone brings a gift and puts it in the middle of the group. Each person gets a number. The first person picks a gift and opens it; the second person can pick a new present or the present the first person opened; the next person can pick a new one or any gift already opened. You can use gag gifts, or go for nice things and watch people fight over them : )
19. Make paper snowflakes! Fold a piece of paper evenly a few times, and then make geometric-shaped cuts. Easy, and you just can’t really go wrong with these.
20. Have a party with a hot chocolate bar – include all kinds of toppings and mixings like whipped cream, chocolate chips, different kinds of marshmallows, red hots, peppermints, ice cream…endless possibilities…
21. I love the idea of getting into the car and going on a “Polar Express” drive through town, blasting Christmas music. (My favorites: Michael Buble, Pentatonix, the Carpenters, and Bing Crosby.) That’s a Pinterest idea. Sounds like a fun new family tradition!
22. Make snow globes.
23. Go caroling at a retirement home or hospital, or go just to visit.
24. Read Christmas or winter stories. (Our favorite is always A Charlie Brown Christmas.)
25. Play charades with holiday themes.
26. Make or decorate a wreath. (Here’s a pretty-looking succulent wreath.)
27. Take some bokeh photos of your Christmas tree.
28. Call on friends. Stop by and say hi! Bring cookies, cards or gifts, if you want to be really encouraging.
29. Do a Secret Santa gift exchange with friends.
30. Put up lights on your house, or other kinds of decor.
31. Make a video Christmas card to send. This would be a cool way to tell far-away family what you’ve been up to this year.
32. Go sledding, if you’re fortunate enough to have snow! If not, maybe head up to a ski resort and go tubing. Or skiing.
33. Sign up for an Angel Tree, to give gifts to less fortunate children and families. How much fun is it to shop for a child, knowing how excited they’ll be to receive these gifts?
34. Make a music playlist for Christmas Day. Debate which versions of the traditional songs are the best.
35. Go to Goodwill and pick out ugly Christmas sweaters or Christmas pajamas for each other.
36. Pick a holiday tradition from another part of the world, and try it this year!
37. Wrap your presents together. Think of creative or unusual ways to wrap the presents.
38. Whip up a familiar or new holiday treat. Muddy buddies are one of my favorites.
39. Make Christmas mugs for hot cocoa, or plates for cookies.
40. Hold a holiday cooking challenge. Pick something that is traditional holiday fare and make a new recipe for it. Think candy canes, cocoa, chestnuts, fruitcake…
41. Take pictures with Santa!
42. Have a snowball fight! If you can. Or make your own snow! (These snowballs are warm but feel legit!)
43. Attend a winter concert, even at a high school. Usually there is a sing-a-long involved : )
44. Drive through town and do a scavenger hunt – you can make it up yourself, but count the number of Santas you see, plus who can find a Grinch, a reindeer, a stocking, tinsel, whatever you can think of! And, of course, play holiday music all the way.
45. Play Christmas Minute to Win It games – if it’s just a couple of you, just do one or two. Or grab a crowd and play a bunch of games!
46. Decorate a gingerbread house! This is a Candyland one!
47. Put up the holiday cards you get in a creative way. I love CB2’s photo card wreath.
48. Set up a nativity scene. (This is the one we have and our kids love. ) Or make your own! There are some pretty creative ones out there…Legos included.
49. Make your Christmas wish lists. Or make them for each other…and see if you’re right : )
50. Do an anonymous act of service for a neighbor or friend. Shoveling a driveway, help with decorating, etc!
Follow my “Celebrate” board on Pinterest for more great ideas!
Follow Jenn @ What You Make It // Lifestyle, Faith, Motherhood, Marriage, Style’s board To Celebrate on Pinterest.