Lite FM has started playing Christmas music. In my family, that is the official start of the holiday season. So before things start to get hectic, let me challenge you to think through what is really important to you this holiday season. If you are not intentional about your time, it will sucked up and the holiday season will slip through your fingers.
Shopping is frustrating this time of year. There are lots of shoppers, lines and unfortunately, cranky people. Plus the more you shop, the more likely you are to spend too much. So, make a list of what you want to get for whom and stick to it. Try to get your shopping done all at once or (gasp!) online at Amazon.
Stay at home
Make sure you spend time at home. Enjoy the Christmas decorations you put up. Light a fire, put on your favorite Christmas music and bake some cookies (here are our favorite recipes). Spend time talking with your kids. Learn who they are. Play some games with them. One of our favorites for elementary age and up is Ticket to Ride.
Make some keepsake crafts for yourself or to give to Grandma for Christmas. We really like the Snowman Keepsake Ornament and many ideas from Christmas Crafts for Kids. You don’t have to invent the craft or make something that looks perfect – just enjoy the process with your kids.
Help others as a family
Take time to serve others as a family. You can ring the Salvation Army bell, pick out a toy for one of many toy drives or take food to a food pantry. You can send a gift to a child overseas through World Vision. Why not take cookies to an elderly couple in your neighborhood, a nursing home or the fire department. Not only will you be making someone else’s day – you will be making an impact on your child’s character.
Plan for some fun
Plan some special activities for your family. Again, you don’t want to book every spare moment, but plan one or two activities for the month of December. Our kids grow too quickly. Make sure you are having fun and creating priceless memories together.
In case you run out of ideas, here are some of our favorite Chicago activities:
Polar Express Train Ride to Two Toots Grill
Zion Festival of Lights (lots of cities have parades and events!)
See the Nutcracker Ballet
So, what is your favorite Christmas activity?