The weather outside may be frightful (or not) but whether Mother Nature has decided to Let It Snow or it remains warm outside where you live, you can still enjoy plenty of family holiday activities. I know this time of year is very hectic for many, but these activities are not about adding to your busyness, but to give you time to slow down and enjoy the season with your loved ones.
10 Fun and Frugal Holiday Activities for Your Family
Make sure to pencil in some time this month to enjoy some favorite (and low-cost) holiday fun with your family. You’ll create great, long-lasting memories and some of these activities may become an annual Christmas tradition.
1. Christmas Entertainment Binge Night
Put on your flannel pajamas, some thick, wool socks and gather around your TV. Pick from holiday movie classics like A Christmas Story, Elf, National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation and Scrooge and settle in with a big bowl of buttery popcorn to binge watch all your favorite Christmas shows.
2. Bake and Decorate Christmas Cookies for Santa
I have many fond memories of making holiday cookies with my Mom. It might have been messy and easier to do it by herself, but we both have treasured memories of decorating misshapen Christmas tree cookies. Turn on some Christmas music, set out mugs of hot cocoa and invite your kids to bake with you and enjoy the mayhem and mess.
3. Go Sledding or Ice Skating
I lived in Minnesota for 30 years so I know what an endless winter feels like. At the same time, some of my fondest memories involve the snow too, whether it was sledding, ice skating or skiing, but not downhill because I’m scared of heights. Invite family and friends to join you on an outdoor outing and make it your holiday party. End the afternoon with a simple potluck dinner or a progressive dinner.
4. Make DIY Gifts for Loved Ones
DIY gifts are the new rage and make a great family project for a lazy Sunday afternoon. You can find ideas, here, here and here to help you create some unique and low-cost gifts that will impress loved ones. This is also a great opportunity to help kids understand the price tag of a gift isn’t what makes it great.
5. Decorate Gingerbread Houses
I know this is a family tradition that Shannon enjoyed as a child and has carried on with her own daughters. You can purchase inexpensive gingerbread kits and have fun decorating these edible (or not) centerpieces. Consider making a few to give as gifts too.
6. Attend a Christmas Performance
Support your community by attending a local holiday performance. Most schools host various holiday concerts, as do most places of worship. Many cities also offer Christmas Tree lighting events, parades and other activities for little to no-cost.
7. Help Someone Decorate for Christmas
Not everyone is able-bodied enough to decorate their own home for the holidays. Volunteer to decorate (and eventually take down) their Christmas Tree and other decorations. This is a great chance to give-back and show some Christmas spirit.
8. Play Christmas Games with the Ultimate Prize
I’m not a big board game fan but my niece loves them. Since I love her, I find myself playing board games with my family every time I visit. And you know what? It’s actually pretty fun. Play a favorite family board game or Pin the Red Nose on Rudolph (it is Christmas after all) with the winner having the honor of opening the first present on Christmas.
9. Volunteer Together
In 10 Ways to Give Back this Christmas, Shannon suggested volunteering as a great holiday activity. This is especially true for those who don’t have much room in their budget. Plus it’s a good reminder, for the young and old, that Christmas means more than presents under a tree.
10. Make a Christmas Video
Instead of the more traditional card, consider creating a family Christmas video. Everyone has a video camera on their phone these days and your kids can likely edit a simple video to post privately on your Facebook page. Or if your video is fabulous and has the potential to go viral, put it on YouTube and enjoy your 15 minutes of fame.
What are some of your favorite holiday activities?