#1 The Christmas Secret is... Simplify!
The Christmas season blows in hard doesn’t it? We feel behind before it ever begins. When the season actually arrives…like right now, if we aren’t intentional in our planning, we will find ourselves feeling little joy and much stress.
We want to create memories for our families and friends. But does that sometimes feel like one more to-do? Do we feel the pressure of adorable Pinterest pins and Facebook posts of our friends who seem to have teams of elves entering their homes every single night making Christmas magical? Do we wonder if we are making Christmas special enough?
I'm learning a secret to fighting this type of Christmas stress.
It is possible to simplify your Christmas, while making the season more meaningful and intentional. It only takes a little extra planning, but in doing so you will thank yourself for making your holiday less stressful and more memorable.
What kid (large or small!) doesn't love an advent calendar. They love opening the doors and counting down the days until Christmas. However, it’s easy for an advent calendar to become just one more ways kids are given a message that it’s all about them. It could potentially be one more way they run to see what they get that day as they countdown to the day they get even more. It doesn’t have to be that way. Kids love time together. Kids love the surprise of opening the door. Kids will cherish these memories. And one day, they will have a heart that thinks a little more of others and a little less of themselves. We hope so at least, right??
So here is an idea list, many of which you can duplicate activities like reading a Christmas story together, or watching a movie, or enjoying a cup of hot chocolate together. Don’t feel the pressure to come up with 25 different activities. Some activities will want to be repeated. This list is to give you ideas. I left off many ideas that you might want to include unique for your family, such as going to a tree farm or decorating the tree... since not all families can do such events, it's all about making it personal to your family.
To simplify even further, you can get some Christmas card stock, use a gift tag punch, and created these advent activities to use each time. Then year after year you don’t have to think about it... just pull it out with our other Christmas decorations. And like any tradition, your kids will always be eager to see what lies behind those doors.
25 Advent Days of Memories and Experiences1- Enjoy a cup of hot chocolate together
2- Enjoy a Christmas movie together
3- Drive or walk around the neighborhood to look at Christmas lights
4- Be a secret santa to someone
5- Make cookies and share with neighbors
6- Random act of kindness (so fun to do to complete strangers!)
7- Prepare, create, wrap teacher/friend gifts.
8- Bless someone in some small way
maybe call someone to simply say I’m thinking of you and Merry Christmas
9- Enjoy a candy cane or Christmas treat
10- Sibling exchange shopping
11- Make Gingerbread houses or Christmas Fudge
12 - Make ornament or Christmas cards
13- Choose a Christmas book to read together
14- Do a Family Service project (feed the homeless or sing Christmas caroles to the elderly etc)
15- Write a Christmas poem or story together
16- Wrap gifts (you do this anyway, so make a memory and have some fun with it!)
17- Write a Christmas letter to someone (compassion child, a relative, a friend)
18- Choose your activity (each person can choose an activity…a story, movie, etc)
19- Christmas outing (ice skating, a local town parade or festival, etc)
20- Christmas scavenger hunt
21- Make a Christmas blessings list (where today did you see hope, love, peace, and joy?)
22- Christmas campout- Set up sleeping bags under the Christmas tree,
watch movies, make popcorn and indoor s’mores,
and snuggle up for an indoor campout under the lights.
23- Make a birthday cake for Jesus
24- Christmas eve church service
25- Christmas morning Jesus was born – our greatest gift ever! Celebrate together!