There is nothing more exciting than the run-up to Christmas. Slowly opening each door on the calendar every day to reveal a chocolate treat, getting home and snuggling on the sofa while watching the best Christmas film ever (Elf), and putting up the tree, securing the star on top!
However, sometimes the days leading up to the big one can become rather tedious. We are all dying to see what Santa brought us. The days beforehand can easily seem to drag more and more until we just can’t take it anymore!
This year, we don’t want this! So, to prepare you before December 25th rolls around here is the ultimate list of things to do in the run-up to Christmas. We will be getting as creative as possible, we have 24 days to cover people!
Explore A Family Walking Trail
For those that are a little older, why not take up the idea of a Christmas themed walk!
Locations such as Wooley Grange, having the infamous ‘Wooley sheep trail’, or the Bradford on Avon Elf trail. Here, you can go on a hunt for Santa’s helpers that are dotted secretly around the path. When found, it becomes a brilliant Christmas competition to see who found all of the elves names, for a chance to win a prize! But, be sure to wrap up warm and get the walking boots out, because this may take a while.
This is a great start to the Christmas season. As, after all, Santa needs his helpers or we won’t be getting any presents!
The run up to Christmas doesn’t have to entail every activity being outdoors and jam-packed with action. In fact, some of the best days are those spent at home, on the sofa, having a nice relaxing day.
For this activity you will need:
The best Christmas movies – my personal favourites: Elf, The Polar Express, The Grinch
With these simple items, a day can be just as fun filled as any. And why not make it even better, and throw in a couple christmas inspired facemasks, scented candles, and anil painting stations, to turn the movie marathon into the perfect pamper day, while the snow is falling in the cold outside.
Visit A Light Festival
Another fantastic way to get into the Christmas spirit is to experience a light festival. This is where a large town, city or park will gather the locals to watch the first switch turning on all the beautiful Christmas lights.
This breathtaking experience is located in many places. One of the best being ‘Longleat’s Festival Of Light’. Here, you can explore the 30 acres of stunning scenery being encapsulated by an array of modern Christmas lights.
From light-up camels to fairy lights flying through the sky. This show is something that should not be missed and is the perfect adventure for the whole family.
And you never know, you might be able to steal some light ideas for your own home. Just on a much smaller scale of course.
Pay A Visit To Santa
Do you remember your first visit to Santa’s grotto? I personally don’t think there is any way to signify Christmas more than taking the young ones to go visit Santa personally. No need to travel all the way to the North Pole this year, because I’m sure he will be coming somewhere near you.
From Windsor to Southampton, there will be a Grotto near everyone. Here, the children can tell Santa their Christmas wishes (lucky hint to the parents if you’re struggling with gifts), chat with the elves about what it’s like to work with the big man himself and maybe, just maybe, get a little present at the end of the meeting to open on Christmas day.
There is no better way to prove to the kids how real Santa is either. And this way, they will be sure to stay off that naughty list!
Outdoor Ice Skating
Are you an avid ice skater? Or the one that will most definitely fall over as soon as you step onto the ice? Either one you are, why not take a trip to an outdoor ice rink!
This is a great way for friends, families or even couples to have an amazing time together, with many laughs most definitely going to happen. It is important to wrap up and go careful with this activity, however. Likely not the one for the younger children, but those old enough should ensure to keep balance at all times, as we don’t want any broken arms on Christmas day, do we. How will you open the presents?
Make A Homemade Gift
Christmas is not about how much money can be spent, not at all. In fact, one of the best gifts given is those can come from the heart and are homemade!
This can be anything you wish. From cards to tree decorations, to a frame with your favourite photo of your mum and yourself. Anything is accepted and anything is memorable!
The best thing about this is that these gifts can be created wherever there is some glue, glitter and card. Whether that is school, at home, or even at the local playground, as long as it is done with the best of efforts, the gift will be amazing.
Cut Down Your Very Own Tree
A most traditional activity to do on the run-up to Christmas is picking and cutting down your very own tree!
There is a sense of defeating the object when going to the local supermarket to purchase a fake tree. In order to fully capture Christmas, from the smells to the textures, the tree should be only real, right?
So, in order to make a day out of it, venture out into a tree cutting woodland, and go round as a group to find the most perfect one that symbolises the household perfectly. Once chosen, it is time for the adults to take over, and get to cutting the favourite down, tying it to the car and taking it home to decorate!
This is a much better way to purchase a Christmas tree and allows an entire day to be dedicated to it, rather than a quick stop and the shop.
Be sure to wrap up warm, and get the Christmas songs on when home, to have your very own tree decorating party.
Build A Snowman
If you’re lucky enough to live in an area that lays a beautiful blanket of snow every Christmas, then you really need to make the most of it and make a snowman like no other.
Get the gloves, hats, scarves and carrots out and begin rolling up your snowman! The best thing about doing this is firstly getting the day to play in the snow. Who doesn’t love quick snowball fight and snow angel session? And secondly, the outside of the house can be beautifully decorated with your makings!
To make it even better, why not turn the making into a challenge. Compete against siblings, family or friends to see who can make the biggest and best snowman, and hold a judging panel to find out who is the winner! Then, the loser should be the one to make the next round of hot chocolates once the day is over.
Who doesn’t love a home filled with delicious smells of home-baked cookies, gingerbread houses and figgy pudding? This is a perfect activity to get the household working together, decorating each cookie with a different Christmas theme, then all enjoying eating them once done.
Even more, home-baked goods can be a brilliant idea for a personal Christmas present. For example, the neighbours that you have grown up next too, family or friends. Just simply wrap the cookies or cakes in a basket, decorate with Christmas paper and viola! A great looking gift, that tastes even better.
But be sure to save some for Santa and his reindeer. After all, he is having a long night delivering all those presents!
Organise A Secret Santa
An ideal fit for the home, friendship group and even the office, is to organise your very own secret Santa present swap. Simply build with a price of around £10, a finishing date and get name picking!
This way, you can get to know your work pals a little more or shock your friends on how well you already know them. But be sure to keep your chosen friend secret however, otherwise, the surprise will be ruined.
For secret Santa however, stick to gifts that are light-hearted, rather small and can’t be guessed! Depending on who you’re buying for, you will know just how far the jokes can go. So, don’t be buying your boss his very own ‘ I am Mr Grumpy’ coffee mug unless you possibly want to ruin a potential promotion. If in doubt, selection boxes are your best friend.
Make And Wear Christmas Jumpers
Likewise with making gifts, why not make your very own ugly Christmas jumper!
From outrageously in your face colours, to Santa falling down the chimney, or a light-up reindeer, the options for a Christmas sweater are endless. In fact, the more crazy, the better in this case.
Simply grab some cheap, plain sweaters and anything Christmassy you can find. Glitter, tinsel, stars and wrapping paper are all perfect accessories to add to the jumper. Pair with some outrageous earrings, black Santa boots and a hat, and you have yourself the perfect outfit for Christmas day.
After this, everyone who took part can create their very own Christmas fashion show, displaying the best creations, and have fun while doing it!
Create Your Christmas Lists
Every child’s favourite thing to do, without a doubt, is creating their Christmas lists. Squeezing as many toys onto their piece of paper, praying that Santa will bring them everything they wish for!
So, if you need to find something for the kids to do, to keep them quiet while you’re busy; then set them up at the table with paper, pens and a toy catalogue in hand, and let them browse until their hearts are content.
Of course, it may be quite impossible to buy them the 10 Xbox’s they hope for, but at least it’ll be an idea of some things they are hoping to get, in order to make their Christmas morning as magical as possible. Not to mention, proving to the children that their Christmas lists really do make it to Santa. Otherwise, how would they have all the exact gifts they asked for?
There is so much to do while on the build-up to Christmas day. From eating your bodyweight in cookies to choosing your favourite tree, there is no doubt that every day won’t be filled with fun, laughter and Christmas spirit.
With 24 days to fill before the big day is upon us, don’t let one go to waste. Ensure each day captures Christmas, in order to make the big day longed for even more.
Everyday does not need to be jam-packed full of adventure, however. Having a simple day on the sofa, Christmas films intact, with more hot chocolate then you can stomach is still a great way to get into the Christmas spirit. Not to mention so many films being in quick reach, you can start the movie marathon off nice and early.
It is important to remember that Christmas is not all about the show though. The lights, decorations and presents make up for a fantastic day. But spending time with friends and family is what makes up the true Christmas spirit, and will create a day to remember forever. And, don’t be afraid to crack out the bubbly and board games, and get the guests competing around the dining table while you pig out on leftovers!