Christmas is coming at pace. It hit you last week when you heard an ancient Christmas carol crawl through the tiny speakers at Woolies.
Cynicism aside, it really can be a fun time of year – as long as you put your inner Grinch to sleep and embrace the holiday with open arms.
Whether you're searching for the Christmas spirit yourself, or want to spread the good vibes to your friends and family, we’ve put together ten simple ways to help you get into the Christmas spirit.
1. stream movies
Seeing is believing, so you’ve got to start by watching Christmas movies. From the classic animations and family comedies to romantic feel-goods, there’s a Christmas movie for every night of December – if you’re dedicated enough.
Here are a few for you to consider:
- The Grinch
- Home Alone
- Love Actually
- Die Hard (it totally counts as a Christmas movie).
2. spotify playlists
When you think of Christmas music, you may already have a go-to album in mind. But you should take a lesson from your Christmas tree and branch out.
Spotify has an endless list of Christmas songs and playlists for you to stream. These are perfect for holiday dinners and boring bus trips.
However, if you’d like to bake up your own playlist, here’s a little recipe:
- Mix 2 cups of Frank Sinatra with 1 cup of Nat King Cole
- Add a dash of Elvis Presley
- Sprinkle over some Michael Bublé and Mariah Carey
- Make up the icing from Pentatonix and Disney
- Bake for 20 minutes
- Serve loud.
3. the tree
On the morning of the 25th, the Christmas tree becomes the centre of everything. So get the tree set up in your living room ASAP.
It’s an early Christmas activity you can do with your family or household and will become a daily reminder of Santa’s impending arrival. And while you decorate your tree, listen to your freshly baked Christmas playlist for the ultimate Christmas feels.
4. email Santa
He may be hundreds of years old, but Santa Claus has kept up to date with technology. Get the kids together and help them craft a letter to Santa, then e-mail it to his personal computer – whether he reads it himself or it's handled by his elf secretary, it's all part of the fun.
It's also a great way to get present ideas for the little ones (unless they’ve been naughty) and gets them even more excited for Christmas. No one can experience the magic of this holiday like kids, so seeing the world through their eyes will make a big difference for you too.
5. elf yourself
There are a bunch of fun and festive activities to do online, however one of my clear favourites is elfyourself, which allows you to put you and your loved one’s faces on dancing elves. The cheer they adhere to is infectious and you can spread it to all your contacts.
6. simplify shopping
If you’re a gift-giver, the infinite aisles of online stores can be exciting and daunting. Don’t just dive in; make a plan of attack for what sites to visit and what you’re after.
A better plan also means you can save on shipping fees with larger orders.
7. read the kids a classic
Whether you tell the moral story about all those Christmas ghosts or recount the adventures of The Polar Express, reading is the best way to get into the world of Christmas. And it’s not just for the kids. You’re narrating these worlds too, so it’s hard not to get sucked in.
8. gingerbread and candy canes
Start baking festive recipes and buy a big bucket of candy canes. This is a delicious way for you to get ready for the feasts that are right around the corner. Plus, you’ll need the baking practice for the midnight cookies you’re going to leave out for Santa.
Check your area for any events coming up. Nothing inspires the Christmas spirit better than a jolly crowd. Here are a few things to look out for in your neighbourhood:
- Christmas lights – Drive around your suburb at night and see the wonder of those who put effort into things
- Visits from Santa– Take the little ones to meet the man himself - the smiles on their faces will be priceless
- Public movies and carols – Many local event spaces host public movies and carol events that you can take your red and green picnic blanket to and relax
I’m dreaming of a white Christmas – not snow, though, but the white sands of Australian beaches. We’ve all grown up watching Christmas movies set in snowy winters, but our summer Christmas has its shining perk: the beach.
Put on a pair of budgie smugglers with reindeers on the cheeks and go for a swim. As long as you’re feeling the festive spirit, you can make anything a Christmas activity.