With only 40 days before Christmas, I am loving all the adverts and Pinterest ideas and other bloggers’ tips! I’m a huge fan of the Sainsbury’s ad already and, having already done my crafts for this year I’m pinning ideas for next year! 😉 I have never called myself gadgety, but looking at all the blogs and magazines lists of present ideas…I seem to be tekky or teen in taste! 🙂 LOL (Unless there’s a page for cooks… thank you 😉 )
So in the interests of both Christmas and budgeting, here are a few ideas for things to do in the run-up to the big day:
- Watch your fave Christmas movie(s). My mum does one a weekend, I’m not that patient! We will always watch Love Actually (usually first because it counts down from 6 weeks before in the film), Arthur Christmas (on November 25th as that is Arthur Christmas day), Scrooged (love that they got away with that as a family film!), Deck the Halls (Mr’B will sit and watch that one) and last, but by no means least, Muppet Christmas Carol (because it is perfection….I mean Dickens and Kermit, come on!) There are dozens more (not to mention new Hallmark ones every year) but these are essential.
- Give to others: Take unwanted toys and clothes to charity, put some pennies in a collection or give some food to your local food bank or shelter. That kind of love is what matters in life, so it’s good for kids to get involved.
- Have a special night in: The teenager and I have had a couple of years where Mr.B goes out with work colleagues and we order pizza (generally eat and drink rubbish all evening) play Christmas Monopoly and watch one or more of the Jurassic Park films. Just junk, tree lights and giggles…bliss.
- Walk: Go and see shop displays, other people’s decor, the main town decorations….in fact, go and wander until you find anything remotely Christmassy.
- Late night shopping/Lights ceremony: This does not need to cost the earth. Take some money for hot chocolate, mulled wine or chips for something hot, but you don’t have to buy anything from the shops to enjoy it! (Tip: if you’re going where they’ll be selling light-up junk to the kids, go to a pound shop and buy some glowsticks to take…save yourself a few quid and loads of hassle!)
- Go to a carol service: They’re free and it doesn’t get more festive!
- Visit friends and family: As part of our tradition, the teenager and I have always done a day (at some point in the week before Christmas) to run around my hometown visiting friends and family we won’t see on Christmas day, delivering presents and getting well fed in the process! Start of Christmas is right there for me.
- Have kids around: There is nothing more fun than having a house full of happy kids! Invite your kids’ friends, your friends with young’uns, nieces, nephews, grandkids, whoever you want. It doesn’t have to be a full blown party…put some Christmas music on, do an easy craft (like biscuit decorating) and provide nibbles. If they get restless, put on a Christmas movie or let them go and play. Their parents will be thankful to have them occupied for a moment of the holidays and you get the fun of winding them up and feeding them junk without any of the responsibility of dealing with their ‘crashing’ later on! 😉
- Make treats: Buy sweet moulds or Christmas ice cube trays, melt chocolate and pour it in for festive treats (also these make great gifts.) Or you can make the classic gingerbread…we made a full set of reindeers and sleigh one year with strawberry laces for reins. If gingerbread ingredients are a little pricey, then regular biscuits/sugar cookies will be great for festive shapes. (Funny story; we have a nativity set of cutters but bought the donkey one separately from the Donkey Sanctuary…it’s like the size of all the wise men put together!….makes a nice treat though 😉 )
- Make Paper decorations: Snowflakes, paper chains and paper plate wreaths are all fun, easy and cheap. Enjoy!
- Write to Santa: Good opportunity to remind kids that he has a lot of people to get presents for, so nothing too big or too pricey…also reminds them to give because Santa will need a little something on the day too!
- Prep for the big day itself: Leave time for the kids to help in the supermarket or, if they’re old enough, prepping the vegetables or icing the cake. If you’re calm and fun they will see it and enjoy the experience.
Have a fab Tuesday, my friends!