Monday, December 6, 2021

List: Ten festive and fun things to do this holiday season!

It seems silly to make a bucket list for such a small period of time, but I disagree.  Life is too short to let the holiday season go unnoticed.  We don't have to be extreme or extravagant.  In fact, the theme of this list is festive, fun, and SIMPLEWith all the drama in our lives, we're craving simplicity.

Without further adieu, here are ten simple holiday season activities that we hope to do this year as a family of four!

christmas activities to do with the kids

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Ten festive & fun things to do this holiday season!

One of the newest food trends on Long Island is hot chocolate bombs.  They are fun shaped chocolates filled with cocoa powder, marshmallows, and sometimes other fun flavors.  Trader Joe's has them on display constantly, but we've never tried them!  One night this holiday season we'll be heating up our glasses of milk or almond milk in my case and letting hot chocolate bombs explode into deliciousness.

2.  Have a movie night watching Jingle All The Way (link).
Every year we watch the same children's Christmas movies over and over again.  This year, my daughter asked me what my favorite holiday movie was when I was a little girl.  When I responded with Jingle All The Way, her face went blank.  She made me promise that we would have a movie night to watch it this year since it's one she's never seen before!

3.  Enjoy our annual DIY Christmas card photoshoot.
Without going into too much detail on this one, we invested in a higher quality camera a few years back with the intention of saving some serious cash in the long run.  Making our DIY holiday cards have become an annual Christmas tradition for us that we have way too much fun doingClick here for my 8 simple steps to the perfect holiday cards at home! (link)

christmas activities to do with the kids

4.  Make Christmas cookies.
Every year I put this because I really look forward to doing itI block off an entire day to bake dozens upon dozens of ricotta cookies (recipe link) and red velvet cheesecake brownies (recipe link).  Then we package them up in festive Christmas bakery boxes (link) to hand out to our family, friends and neighbors.

5.  Walk through the Bayard Holiday House Tour (link).
You can find me exploring our local arboretum several times a week.  Despite my frequent visits, I've never entered the historical Cutting Mansion that's the forefront of the park.  This year I'd like to change that by joining the hour and a half guided tour that takes visitors on a voyage to the holiday seasons of the past!

6.  Attend our local tree lighting ceremony.
This is the one thing that I swear that we're going to do every year and it's one thing that we never do!  It's always on a weeknight at a time that's hard to make and during freezing temperatures.  But, I won't give up on at least trying!

7.  Make Santa a Christmas collage.
Every year my kids write a letter to Santa Claus telling him all about their good deeds for the year.  When they're done, they use holiday catalogs, construction paper, and glue sticks to make their wish list into a really pretty collage.  Pair this with some warm chocolate chip cookies, and it makes for a great afternoon for the kiddies!

Every year the Bronx Zoo turns their park into a winter wonderland!  There is a continuous, animal themed light display along meandering, paved paths.  There are activities along the way for the kids such as making s'mores, train rides, a carousel, and a real ice slide!  Performers dress up as festive characters and interact with the kids.  Ice sculptors put on demonstrations and compete with each other.  There are boozy ice luges for the adults and a wildlife theater for the kids.  It really is a great time and a fabulous outdoor, COVID friendly tradition to get back to!

9.  Hang socks & mittens on Giving Trees.
Every year the schools put up "giving" trees where members of the community are asked to hang new clothing items to be donated to the needy families for the Winter.  We typically buy socks and mittens.  Then my kids hang the items on their school's Giving Tree.

10.  Play my homemade Holiday Lights scavenger hunt.
We started this tradition because of COVID19, but had so much fun doing it, that we decided to keep it up for as long as the kids want!  Beside, who doesn't like to look at Christmas lights?  The Grinch, that's who!  Click here for last year's printable scavenger hunt (link).

What is on your holiday season bucket list?


  1. I will watch Single All the Way, Christmas Castle and Royal Queens Christmas these holidays, I've left them for the end of the year viewing. They've opened our sad little local WinterFest last night and I wore my famous Christmas sweatshirt to the dentist today and he was thrilled LOL I also wore my new navy winter jacket so I strutted a bit, naturally, I do look ever so elegant in my winter outfits.

    1. I already watched Love Hard and The Holiday Calendar this year. Other than that, I've been re-watching Gilmour Girls which is like a never ending Christmas movie. LOL Ohh, I want to see the Christmas sweatshirt!

  2. I’m making my usual cookies, with some new recipes sprinkled in (this year it’s pumpkin snickerdoodles). We already went to the Xmas fireworks that our community started doing last year. I also have planned out a tour of holiday lights in the area. Most exciting will be when Santa stops by on his sleigh at the end of our driveway! I scheduled it through Kiwanis for my grandkids, who all have Covid right now, so hopefully they are back to normal by then!

    1. Pumpkin snickerdoodles sound amazing!! You'll have to share the recipe if you like them. :) The grandchildren are going to LOVE that! I'm sorry to hear that they have COVID, but I'll keep my fingers crossed that they're cleared for the big day.

  3. Man, I'm just trying to make it through the holidays in tact at this point. We've been so busy with the craft stuff, I'm kind of looking forward to January and February where I can just catch up on sleep. But, we will squeeze in holiday stuff this year. Movie watching, cookie baking, driving around the town looking at Christmas lights. I host Christmas breakfast for Jason's entire extended family every year, so that's always something to look forward to as well. Oh, and my niece is due with a new baby right around Christmas, so we may have that extra bit of excitement squeezed in this year too!

    1. My dad is a small business owner. Growing up we were all like "YAY, the holidays!" and he was always like "Bah Humbug.".. LOL What was carefree fun for us meant lots of extra work for him. The Christmas breakfast sounds amazing. I'm sure you're going to make something yummy!

    2. Bah Humbug indeed. I've gotten to the point where I wake up and pray there's no Etsy orders to deal with on top of everything else, then have a meltdown when I see 17 sitting there. It's a blessing, but it feels like a curse sometimes too, so I totally get your dad's Scrooge vibe during the holidays.

  4. Like that idea about spending the night watching movie.

  5. I was a fan of Jingle all the way when I was younger


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