There's more to Christmas than nudging your way through crowded malls, attending parties and sitting down for a Christmas Day feast. Amid the hustle and bustle, and baking and wrapping, don't forget to slow down long enough to experience some simple, yet engaging activities that fill you with happiness and good cheer.
Read on for some treasured Christmas moments to make it truly feel like the most wonderful time of the year.
1. Dust off the Bing Crosby records and listen to classic Christmas carols as you and your family lovingly decorate the tree. Reminisce about the ornaments, new and old, and take a break to munch on a candy cane plucked straight from the tree.
2. Settle onto your most comfortable chair, tea and shortbread in hand, with the lights dimmed and the Christmas tree glimmering, and watch your favourite Christmas classic. It's a Wonderful Life, A Tree Grows in Brooklyn, and Miracle on 34th Street are must-sees. For the young at heart there's A Charlie Brown Christmas and, of course, National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation will give you lots to laugh about.
3. Stop to dreamingly admire your Christmas tree and simply gaze at the twinkling lights and shimmering ornaments.
4. Bundle up and venture out on a crisp, snowy day to build your very own Frosty the Snowman. Or lie in the freshly fallen snow and create snow angels.
5. Grab your family members, the dog, and your cosiest wool sweater and go walking in a winter wonderland. If you're feeling adventurous, bring along the toboggan or your ice skates. Return home to a cup of hot chocolate that's sure to be the best you've ever had.
6. Go for a romantic, evening stroll and admire the magical light displays in your neighbourhood. Hop in the car if you wish to cover more territory and explore a variety of neighbourhoods.
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7. Visit an evergreen tree farm and find the perfect Christmas tree. Some farms offer horse-drawn sleigh rides through the woods, with mulled apple cider and hot chocolate to keep you toasty warm during your search. There's nothing like the refreshing scent of a luscious Balsam Fir filling your home with the sweet scent of nature.
8. Gather the family and children around a crackling fire and read a cherished old-fashioned Christmas story aloud. A few that are guaranteed to captivate are A Christmas Carol, Rudolf the Red-Nosed Reindeer or The Night Before Christmas.
9. Attend a Christmas Day or Christmas Eve church service and acknowledge the true meaning of Christmas. The choir, the holly and ivy, and the beautiful, peaceful surroundings are sure to get you and your family in the Christmas spirit.
10. Don't forget to leave cookies and milk out for Old Saint Nick and hang your stockings with care.
Whether you're spending time with loved ones, singing Christmas carols or writing greeting card sentiments, there are many magical moments to fill your heart with love and warmth. Remember to take time for even the simplest pleasures and you'll enjoy a truly special and memorable holiday season.
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