Ways to make this the best christmas season
Make Christmas Day last
. Instead of ripping into gifts and rushing through the morning, open gifts one at a time. Enjoy each person spleasure of giving and receiving. Light candles, put on music, and intersperse gift opening with breakfast, laughter, and connection.What will make this the best Christmas season ever for you? Please share your ideas and experiences in the comments.
No last minute shopping
. If you find yourself without a gift for someone at the last minute, dont rush out and buy something so you wont be empty handed. Instead, create your own gift card for someone offering something special they would enjoy a dinner out, a coupon for chores, a back rub, a movie together.
Begin with gratitude
. Before you begin handing out the gifts and tearing in to them, take a moment to reflect on all of your blessings since last Christmas. Write them down. Look at all of the good you have in your life and be grateful.
Set a budget
. If you know exactly how much you are going to spend this Christmas, then shopping becomes much easier. Dont feel pressured by the media, the advertisements, or other people to spend more than you intend.
. Allow this Christmas season to be what it is without expectations or hopes for perfection. We are often disappointed when things don t go as planned during the holidays, so plan loosely and remain open to change. Embrace the reality of life as being part of the season.
Keep it simple
. Part of releasing expectations is simplifying your Christmas season. If you over schedule yourself with activities, shopping, and travel, you will be stressed and will miss out on the peace and beauty of the season.
Spend time in nature
. Wherever you live, in a cold or warm climate, spend time outside absorbing the natural beauty of this time of year. The smells, the sounds, the climate of December are all part of the joyful anticipation of Christmas.
Listen to beautiful music
. Everyone has their favorite holiday music, and it creates background mood for the holidays. Consider music that is peaceful and soothing to bring calm during this hectic time of year. I love the music of Stanton Lanier during the holidays or any of the Wyndom Hill music.
Create and sustain traditions
. Traditions during the holidays make us feel connected to one another and to something larger than ourselves. They offer a sense of certainty and comfort. We have a tradition of letting the children open one gift on Christmas Eve, and it s always pajamas to wear that night.
Entertain without perfection
. Sometimes we avoid inviting friends over during the holidays unless everything is perfect
. The glow of candlelight creates magic and warmth. Light them at dinner, during a bath, on the mantle. I ve put an assortment of candles in the fireplace when it s too warm to light a fire.
Buy gifts mindfully
. Don t purchase a gift just for the sake of having something to give. Buy something that is truly a gift for the recipient, something that lifts them up and makes them happy. Here are some ideas for mindful giving.
Bring nature inside
. As you decorate for the season, bring some of the beauty from the outside into your home. Cut branches and holly berries to put on your mantle or in an arrangement. Decorate pine cones to put on your tree. Spray leaves with gold paint to use on your table or as place cards. Here are more ideas.
. Print off some Christmas carols from the Internet. Brew up some hot chocolate or mulled cider. Get some candles or lanterns. Call a few friends to join you, and walk around your neighborhood and sing. It s really fun and more fun if you spike the cider.
. Instead of buying more wrapping paper, get creative. Collect all of the paper you have from last year and use it first. Use recyclable brown paper bags and tie them with bright ribbon or raffia string. Use burlap or fabric pieces to wrap up round or small gifts. Here are some more ideas.
A baking party
. Set aside a morning with family or a couple of friends, and enjoy the pleasures of baking together. Bake a batch of Christmas cookies, pumpkin bread bread, or your own favorite holiday treat.
Feed the birds
. Get a bird feeder as a family gift before Christmas and set it up near a window. It is such a simple and beautiful pleasure to watch the variety of birds looking for a good meal.
A family project to serve
. Plan something together as a family to help or offer hope to others during the holidays. Adopt a family, serve in a soup kitchen or food bank, visit shut ins. This reminds us of our many blessings and provides a sense of meaning and context for the season.
Create simple healthy meals
. From Thanksgiving until the New Year, we are faced with an array of delicious, but often fattening and unhealthy food choices. Whenever possible, create simple and healthy meals to keep your eating choices balanced.
Support the arts
. In this economy, the arts are suffering with lower attendance. Many performing companies, ballet companies, and other arts organizations are closing their doors. The holidays are a great time to support the arts while feeding your soul. Attend The Nutcracker, go to a holiday symphony performance, or watch a local theater production. These are great family occasions.
Send a letter or gift to a soldier
. Imagine being in Iraq or Afghanistan this Christmas, away from loved ones and the comforts of home. Remember those fighting for our freedom and send a note of thanks or a needed gift.
Rediscover meaning and purpose
. As things begin to slow down in the days before Christmas and the week after, take some time to reexamine your own life to determine what is truly meaningful and important to you. Define and uncover your passion and purpose to begin the New Year with a fresh perspective.
Write a love letter
. One of the most meaningful gifts you can give is a hand written letter expressing your love and gratitude to your spousebeloved, your parents, your children, or a treasured friend. Take time and thoughtful care in expressing your feelings, writing on beautiful paper, and wrapping your gift. It will never be forgotten.
Reach out to someone lonely
. If you know someone alone or lonely this holiday season, connect with them. Invite them over for a meal or include them in a family occasion. The holidays can be very sad for many people, and you can bring a ray of light into their lives.
Take a drive or a walk
. Get in the car and take a drive just to look at the holiday lights and decorations. Or simple walk around your neighborhood. Carry a mug of hot chocolate and a box of homemade cookies with you and make it an occasion.
Enjoy the build up
. Sometimes the best thing about Christmas is the expectant build up. Don t let all the little things that make Christmas extra special pass you by in a blur of frantic present wrapping. To make this your best Christmas ever sit back, put your weary over shopped feet up and take a big sip of your favourite festive mocha
Christmas movie night
. Everyone has a favourite Christmas movie, so why not invite a few of your friends round or gather up the family and arrange a Christmas movie night? The rules are this everyone should bring one Christmas movie they love and a Christmas treat. Then you just need to sit back and enjoy It s A Wonderful Life, Love Actually or, for those more action packed movie fans, Die Hard.
Read a Christmas book
. To make this Christmas your best ever you should definitely peruse the Christmas section at your bookstore. Imagine settling back into a comfy chair with a cheeky pre Christmas drink whilst reading about plucky Tiny Tim in A Christmas Carol or, for those of you who like a more humorous and modern read, Holidays On Ice by David Sedaris. If you often find yourself too frazzled around Christmas to pick up a book try a Christmas poetry anthology The Oxford Book of Christmas Poems is a great choice.
. Okay, so the internet is nothing new but, despite the fact that you can buy pretty much everything online for less, people still traipse around overcrowded shops, only to get blasted by advertising and persuasive shop layouts that make us buy dud presents no one wants and have to queue for 25 minutes for the privilege of buying said gifts. Trust us, for the majority of the gifts you need to buy, you re best to stick to online stores. You can shop around for the best price and look out for stores that offer a free delivery service.
Write a letter to Santa
. Okay, so you may not have written a letter to Santa since you were nine years old but, although a little childish, this year posting a letter to the jolly feller who lives in Lapland might help you more than you could guess. Yet rather than adding material items to your wish list, write down some personal goals, like finding a new guy or girl or overcoming your fear of spiders. Then in your letter try to suggest ways Santa could help you achieve your goals come Christmas day. You might be surprised by the solutions that you write and what changes your wish list to Santa might create.
. What says Christmas more than a gingerbread house? If you re not a dab hand in the kitchen, dont worry reach for your plastic and buy a cheap DIY gingerbread house kit. To make your gingerbread house that bit more special create it with your partner, friend or child and make it personal to you and your lives. Remember though, this Christmas activity can be tricky so stick to having a two to three person gingerbread house team to avoid creative hissy fits and a food fight.
Easy Christmas biscuit tree stack
. This easy Christmas biscuit tree stack is simple, effective and will make you look like you ve had Elf help this year. Simply make or buy a biscuit dough, cut out 10 14 stars (the stars need to go from large to small in size) and bake until cooked. Once cooled ice each biscuit with white icing. Once the icing is set stack the cookies the largest star should sit at the bottom and the smallest star should sit at the top. Your holiday guests will love this stack.
. The best way to make this your best Christmas ever is to start a new tradition. You could invite your family or friends to each buy a new Christmas decoration for your tree or you could go on a special Christmas eve walk and stop in at a cafe for a Christmas treat. Make your Christmas tradition something that you look forward to and make sure it s meaningful to you.
Get the best wrapped presents award
. If you re anything like us you ll know that your dream of having elegant and perfectly neat Christmas presents to give to your loved ones is a dream that is never going to become a reality. Yet wait, we have good holiday news for you and your kin Go to your local store and ask for their unwanted cardboard boxes. Then simply pop all of your awkward to wrap items into relevant boxes before wrapping. If you don t have enough time for this devious wrapping trick just buy pretty boxes and add a bow or ribbon to decorate.
. The best way to make sure this is your best Christmas ever is to get involved in all the Christmas activities in your local community. Go ice skating, take part in a Santa run, go to your local carol service, visit the most decorated house in your area or go to a craft fair. Get involved with as much as you possibly can to make sure this Christmas is memorable and meaningful.
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Federation Square Melbourne
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. Gundruk is fermented leafy green vegetable and is a popular food in Nepal and claimed to be one of the national dishes. It is popular not only in Nepal but also in the every gorkhali or Nepalese diaspora household worldwide.The annual production of
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Practice Saying No and Offer an Alternative When Necessary
. Most people I know spend their Christmas season busy doing things they didn't want to do in the first place. Start today by saying no to commitments you know will cause you stress over the holidays. If saying no is hard, then offer an alternative. I
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Indoor Obstacle Course
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