I know not everyone who reads this blog celebrates Christmas so I’m not going to just dedicate this post to that particular holiday. I’d rather focus on ten ways that anyone can appreciate this time of year.
This is sort of like the list of 11 ways to appreciate autumn that I posted earlier this year with the idea being that you should take time for yourself during this season and remember to keep yourself sane by stopping and just enjoying what is going on around you instead of giving in to the insanity of this month.
So here we go!
- Find some good hot chocolate – not that powder mix stuff. Add marshmallows or whipped cream or crushed candy canes. Find a cozy place to sit and enjoy. Bonus points if you sit down and enjoy it with another person. Make sure there are no distractions like TVs or loud background music.
- Make something with your hands that you can give to someone else. Make sure it’s nice and do your absolute best. For ideas on what you can make, read this post!
- Play in the snow. Make a snowman, an igloo, whatever. Of course this means it has to snow where you are. If it doesn’t snow where you are, make a snowman using different materials.
- Give something to the people in your life that perform important functions but aren’t really familiar to you – postmen, bus driver, custodians, etc. Thank them for the hard work they do keeping things moving.
- If it snows where you are, shovel your neighbor’s sidewalk or driveway just as a kind gesture. If it doesn’t snow where you are, perform another kind gesture for your neighbor.
- Take an afternoon or an evening and bake cookies. Host a cookie swap where everyone brings a dozen or so cookies and everyone can take a few of every type. Bonus points if you ask people to make traditional cookies from their culture!
- Candles. Candles everywhere. Self-explanatory.
- Go ice skating! Bonus points if you find a rink outside with a beautiful backdrop (i.e. Rockefeller Center, outside a museum, Central park, any park really). It isn’t that difficult, take your time if you’ve never gone before and be okay with falling once or twice! Get back up and try again!
- If you’re too afraid to go ice skating, try sledding or tubing! If you live in a place where it doesn’t snow look for a place that you can drive to for these activities. Fake snow is a real thing.
- Whatever you do, don’t make the season about materialistic things. December is not about how much stuff you can get but what you can give.
And, as always, if you find yourself getting overwhelmed, just stop. It’s okay to say no when something is just too much. You are not obligated to give a gift to every single person in your life and you are also not required to go into debt in order to give gifts to people. Be practical, be reasonable and be a little bit selfish. All too often December becomes a frenzy of shopping. If you’ve been to a mall any time between Thanksgiving and Christmas Eve you know exactly what I mean. It shouldn’t be that way!
Get your shopping done, wrap your presents, sit back and enjoy the hot chocolate.
How are you celebrating the season? Do you have any unique traditions? I’d love to hear about them so leave a comment below!