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The holiday season has always represented a time to reflect on the good things, celebrate annual traditions, and connect with friends and family. Despite an unusual 2020 that has limited our social interactions and travel, there is no reason this holiday season can’t be filled with fun Christmas activities, even if they are socially distanced! With decorations to be hung, seasonal recipes to be followed, and Christmas cards to be put in the mail, there are plenty of holiday-themed experiences to keep us all entertained. We prepared a Christmas checklist you may want to review to ensure you stay on track! While each family household has different holiday traditions, we have assembled this list of creative Christmas activities for kids you may want to include in the traditions this year. For the more mature audience, we have also included a list of Christmas activities for adults. Both our lists feature a bunch of holiday activities you can do from home, for those looking to still practice social distancing. We have even highlighted those ideas with special tagging. We hope you enjoy it!
Trying to figure out what you can do for Christmas from home this year? Nothing beats a craft that you can eat when you’re finished! Many supermarkets will sell a gingerbread house kit around the holidays. The kit will usually include the bare essentials to build four walls and a roof. Head to the candy aisle of the supermarket and select a few custom treats that will add to your child’s design of the gingerbread house. Here are a few ideas on how some popular candies may be incorporated:
Depending on how old your child is, they may be able to help you make the cookie batter. Let them decide if they want to add in chocolate chips, coconut, cinnamon, and even food coloring. Pick out some holiday-themed cookie cutters and let your child play pastry chef. If you have any leftover candy from the gingerbread house decorating, be sure to add them to the sugar cookies.
This fun Christmas activity with kids is super easy to set up and execute. Most of us have paper lying around the house, but you can add some artistic flair to the project by buying some colored construction paper or origami paper. Fold up the paper numerous times and have your child cut out some creative designs. Once unfolded, you can hang the paper snowflakes on the Christmas tree, from the mantel, or tape them to the wall. You could even include one of the hand-made paper snowflakes with your Minted holiday card that you mail off to your family and friends. Pro tip: Browse online for some stencils to create some really fun patterns.
If you have snow on the ground, this might be a fun activity to get the kids involved in. Arm them with some carrots, charcoal, twigs, and clothing like hats, scarves, and mittens and see what their creative minds come up with. If you live in a beach destination, bring the shovels and buckets to the sand and construct a sandman. Sunglasses, sunscreen, water floaties, and a Santa hat really pair nicely with a sandman. Lastly, if you don’t have snow or sand to use as a medium, you could have your child tape three white paper plates or white balloons together. Give them a box of markers or crayons and design a fun snowman that can be displayed in the living room or on your child’s wall.
Decorating the Christmas tree is an activity that can generate some good family bonding. It can be exciting pulling sentimental ornaments out of storage and finding the perfect spot for them on the tree. Unfortunately, a younger child may not get to enjoy the full scope of this Christmas activity, as they can only reach the lower branches of the tree. You may want to consider getting a second smaller Christmas tree that is only three feet tall. Your children will then be able to reach and decorate this tree to their heart’s delight!
Does your child have a favorite Christmas movie? If not, this might be the year to start a tradition of watching the same holiday movie every December. With so many online streaming and rental services like Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime, and iMovie, you won’t even have to leave the comforts of your home to rent or buy a movie! Add some extra fun to the event by wearing Christmas-themed pajamas. Here is a list of popular kid-friendly Christmas movies:
You don’t want to go overboard on this one, or else your whole house will smell like popcorn. Get out the thread and needle, pop some popcorn (preferably non-buttered) and let your children create a lanyard of kernels that can adorn the Christmas tree or Christmas mantle. You could even pair this activity with watching one of the Christmas movies recommended above.
Our list of Christmas activities for kids would not be complete without a visit or picture with Santa! Usually, around the start of December, local malls and outdoor venues will start to offer “meet Santa” photo events, but who knows if this tradition will be practiced this year? If you and your family aren’t comfortable with the idea of venturing out to a potentially crowded mall, consider having a family member dress up as Santa and setting up a photoshoot from home. Building a Santa’s workshop set or holiday-themed backdrop could be a fun at-home Christmas activity on its own! Who knows, you might even secure the perfect picture for this year’s holiday card! If you are planning for additional holiday photoshoots around the house with your child, we have a great list of tips for taking pictures of children.
Make some hot cocoa, pour a cup for each member of the family, and head out in the car in search of the best Christmas light displays for some memorable family bonding. You may know a couple of neighborhoods that always go above and beyond each winter. Some cities and towns even have a professionally made light display or experience that charges admission. If you are lucky, you will come across a light display that is synched up with music.
Sometimes hiding the candy canes can be more fun than hunting for them. This is a great activity if you have multiple children. If you don’t, perhaps set a countdown timer to challenge your child. Just like an Easter egg hunt, spread some candy canes around the house and the children can collect them in a Christmas stocking instead of an Easter basket. You could even purchase a variety of colors of candy canes and give out prizes for the largest collection to add to the excitement.
You could pair this at-home Christmas activity with almost all of our other suggestions to boost your holiday spirit to the next level. Whether you tune in to a holiday-specific radio station or find a holiday-themed channel on an internet-streaming service, you can rest assured knowing there are plenty of options for Christmas songs around the clock. If you play a musical instrument, you could learn a few Christmas songs and print the lyrics for your children to sing along as you play.
Making your own Christmas popsicles is one of the most colorful Christmas activities for kids on our list. With a simple popsicle mold and a few ingredients, you can make this activity come to life.
To make an all-green popsicle: In a blender, mix pineapple, banana, apple juice, spinach, and coconut milk. Add in more spinach if you desire a darker shade of green. Pour the mixture in the mold and freeze.
To make an all-red popsicle: Use all the same ingredients as above but substitute strawberries, raspberries, or cherries in place of spinach. You could even use a combination of all three of those options!
To make a half-green half-red popsicle: First, start with the green mixture and fill the popsicle mold halfway. Freeze the mold overnight. The next day you can then fill the rest of the mold with the red mixture and freeze again for at least four hours.
Pine cones fall during late autumn, so the timing is perfect for a fun Christmas activity involving art for your kids. Whether you collect some pine cones off the ground or purchase them at the local craft store, your children are bound to have some fun making them their own. Some decorating tools include:
Purchase a fun craft kit online and have your kids focus their concentration on stitching an elf together from scratch, building a toy airplane or train out of wood, or decorating ornament molds with fluorescent paint gel. Share pictures of their creations on social media or in your holiday card so friends and family can feel as if they were involved with the fun.
Sure you could pick up a Christmas tree at the local mega-store or parking lot pop-up, but the holiday season is about creating memories! A fun Christmas activity for adults could involve driving out to a Christmas tree farm and hand-selecting the tree that you think will look best in your home. In some cases, you may even need to cut the tree down and transport it back to your car. While the process takes longer, we have a feeling the memory will last a little longer too.
Warm up this holiday season with a festive cocktail that will put you in the Christmas spirit. Just add a touch of peppermint schnapps to your favorite hot cocoa recipe and top it off with whipped cream. For even more themed adult beverage ideas, be sure to read through our post on holiday cocktail recipes featuring vodka, gin, or whiskey.
If you have that “ugly” Christmas sweater in the back of your closet, don’t forget to show it off at least once. Whether you wear it around the house to bring a smile to a loved one’s face or broadcast it to the world at a social gathering or virtual webinar/party, Christmas sweaters have a way of spreading holiday joy. If you don’t have an ugly sweater in your wardrobe yet, maybe this is the year to add it to the wish list. We have some other great ideas for your Christmas outfits in a separate post you may enjoy reading through.
In year's past, you may have rounded up the family for a professional photograph at a scenic location or even visited Santa's workshop at a nearby mall for a festive photo opp. This year, see how you can get creative in your own home. Stage family members in funny ways, include clever props, and experiment with wardrobes. Are there certain rooms or locations in your home that could create an interesting backdrop? The more creative the better! Feature the finished photo in your annual holiday cards, in text messages to friends, virtual backgrounds for video calls, and emails to extended family.
Once December 1st rolls around, be sure to keep an eye out for any Christmas tree lighting ceremonies that may be hosted near you. Oftentimes the tree lighting ceremony includes other holiday entertainment from school bands, professional singers, or dance troops. It could be a fun date night if you paired a nice dinner out followed by a tree lighting ceremony. If you are uneasy about the thought of possibly being surrounded by a large crowd, look to see if there are any televised tree lighting events or a live stream you could watch on your computer while snacking on some holiday treats.
It is widely accepted that the weekend or two after Thanksgiving is the best time to hang your Christmas lights before the rest of the holiday season becomes too busy. With drive-by graduation parades and birthday party parades becoming the new norm in 2020, it is not unreasonable to think that more people will be in cars this holiday season to view light displays in their neighborhood. Will this be the year that your house has the best holiday light display on the block? This is a great way to show off your creativity and spread holiday joy! A monochromatic theme can be classy and elegant. Or, perhaps your household will opt for the old-fashioned multi-color bulbs and a reindeer on the lawn. It is never too early to at least start thinking about what design or color scheme you may want to feature!
The COVID-19 pandemic has really transformed our traditional social practices in 2020. Many of us have canceled travel plans and missed out on deep engagements with friends and family. Take special advantage of this holiday season and send a personal update to let all those you care about know you have been thinking of them. Browse through Minted’s collection of photo holiday cards created by independent artists from around the world. Ensure that your Christmas card leaves a lasting impression this year! Check out our Christmas checklist timeline to guarantee that your card preparation and mailing stays on track.
Holiday Flowers by Wildfield Paper Co.
Crack open a puzzle with a winter or holiday theme on December 1st and aim to have it complete by Christmas morning. A 500- or 1000-piece puzzle should be a perfect size. Consider posting a photo update to social media each week with your progress. Once done, you can re-gift the puzzle to a friend or neighbor to complete! It’s the gift that keeps on giving!
Winter Peace by Eve Schultz
A new activity that has grown in popularity over the last decade is a group painting class that will guide you step-by-step through painting a work of art. Rather than attending a group class, purchase a blank canvas, paints, and a brush or two, and test your artistic ability at home! There are plenty of online video tutorials you could play on your smart television or computer that will guide you through creating your own masterpiece. For even more fun, look for a tutorial that focuses on a holiday theme like Santa’s workshop or a winter wonderland. We really like this idea as a unique Christmas activity for adults in 2020. Of course, if you would rather leave art to the professionals, you could always just treat yourself to a new piece of wall art for your home.
Winter Retreat by Lindsay Megahed
Host a virtual meetup with friends, encourage holiday attire and drinks, and host a Christmas-themed game. You could prepare a bunch of holiday-themed questions that each virtual attendee can answer in a trivia challenge. You could also act as a DJ and play popular holiday gingles to see who will be the first to correctly name the popular Christmas song.
There are many DIY Christmas wreath ideas that will walk you through how to construct a beautiful wreath for your holiday home decor. You could start with a plain premade wreath and add decorations. Or, for a more hands-on approach, purchase a styrofoam ring at a craft store and then begin attaching your own materials. Some materials to consider using include:
As the old saying goes “it’s better to give than receive.” The holidays are a time for giving. There are plenty of volunteer opportunities to collect and deliver food to the needy or clean up the community you live in year-round. You could even organize toy drives to give gifts to kids who don’t have as much.
Drive-in movie theaters are making a comeback and just in time for the holidays! Check to see if any local venues will be hosting one of your favorite Christmas movies like Elf, National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation, or Love Actually. We have even seen some large stadiums in major cities convert their parking lots into make-shift drive-in theater locations.
Here’s a fun socially distanced Christmas activity idea for those with type A personalities. Grab a calendar and start to plan a virtual meeting with 12 different friends or family members spread out over 12 days. Send out your meet-up requests in advance so you can have your “12-Days of Christmas Calls” all finalized well in advance. This will make the two weeks leading up to Christmas seem to fly by. Minted has some great themed virtual backgrounds you can download for free. Use a different one for each call!
Written by Minted