30+ Ways to Have a Magical Christmas at Home

Who knows what is going to happen with Christmas this year. As a family of 5, I am starting to worry that we may not be able to plan any of our usual get-togethers with friends and family. This is so sad and I try not to think about it too much. For me, Christmas is very much about family and friends (oh and food). Fingers crossed restrictions change by then...... 

30+ Ways to Have a Magical Christmas at Home

2020 has been a tough year for all of us and Christmas is something we usually look forward to and is the time of year we can inject a little magic into our lives. Whatever happens, I reckon most of us just want to try and make the best of it. 

Today I am sharing 30+ ways you can still have a magical Christmas at home. I am not suggesting you do all of these and over the last few years, I have realised that sometimes doing less over the festive season is actually the way forward. But hopefully, there will be something on this list that will give you a few ideas. 

NB: Make sure you follow current Government guidelines. 

I just want to say, this post is not designed to take away any sadness you may feel about Christmas this year or tell you that everything is going to be ok. I really hope extended families still can still plan a few things together - the unknown is a killer. It is ok to feel sad. 

Also, if you do not have the energy, resources or inclination to do any of this stuff , that is ok too. In the grand scheme of things, kids won't remember. 

 30+ Ways to Have a Magical Christmas at Home 

Elf on the Shelf 

Love him or hate him, Elf on the Shelf is a fun tradition enjoyed by many households. Our elf retired a few years ago but the kids have fond memories of some of the pranks he used to get up to. Our elf didn't watch over the kids as such, he was just a bit silly who used to get up to mischief and put a smile on the kids face each morning. 

Make Bird-Friendly Reindeer Cookies 

This is a fun idea for kids and a nice eco-friendly alternative to traditional reindeer dust. Get the instructions here. 

Make a Cadbury Chocolate Sleigh 

Cadbury chocolate is my absolute face. I love the idea of putting together this Chocolate Christmas Sleigh on 1 December. Find out more and buy here (ad - affiliate link)

Plan a Christmas Mocktail / Cocktail Night  

If you are going to miss a Christmas night out this year, plan a cocktail night at home instead. This one is great for teens to get involved with too.  Get dressed up, search for Christmas scenes on your Sky Box, pop your favourite playlist on Spotify and get creative. Here are 26 Christmas Cocktail & Mocktail Recipes for you to work your way through. 

Host a Christmas Chronicles Movie Premiere at Home

The Christmas Chronicles Part 2 drops on Netflix on 25 November. Why not host an at-home premiere to celebrate? Here are some top tips for making the most of the occasion and how to watch in style. 

Host a Festive Afternoon Tea Party at Home 

As we were in peak lockdown over Easter, we decided to celebrate with afternoon tea at home. We dusted off our best china and used our teapot for the first time in forever. It was lovely and I think we will recreate one Sunday in December. You can bake your own treats or buy from your favourite bakery. I bet The Running Fox will have a few takeaway Christmas treats up their sleeve. 

There is also the option to go all out with afternoon tea delivered - Curiously Wicked offers this service amongst others. 

Toast Marshmallows 

Nothing beats sitting in the garden / on the beach (following local guidelines) and toasting mashmallows after dark. Sometimes the simplest of evenings are the best. 

Create a Special Christmas Movie Night 

We love a Christmas movie night! We open the Quality Street, all snuggle up on the sofa and work our way through the classics. Elf,  Arthur Christmas, the Grinch, Home Alone, Gremlins & A Muppet Christmas Carol are our family favourites and always lift our spirits. 

You can make it extra special by creating invitations & themed snacks. Nomipalony has put together an ultimate guide to 'u' and 'pg' rated Christmas films.

Put Together a Tree Day Family Hamper 

My pal Nyomi does this every year, rather than a Christmas Eve box, they put together a Tree Day Family Hamper which they open on the day they put their tree up - it usually includes festive PJs, a book, snuggle socks and a few Christmas treats. You can then wear your Christmas PJs and enjoy the treats throughout the whole of December and get more use out of them. 

Make a Hot Chocolate Station 

Ashlie SugarRushed is the Queen of Hot Chocolate Stations. Her famous Slow Cooker Hot Chocolate Station is perfect for having on the go for an after-school or to come home to after a Sunday afternoon walk and a real treat. 

Host a North Pole Breakfast

We used to do this every year when the kids were little and I think I will plan it again for this year. A North Pole Breakfast takes place on 1 December to celebrate the arrival of your advent calendars / Elf on the Shelf / 1 December. 

The evening before, go all out with your table decorations - think Christmas party plates, a Center Piece, wine glasses, Christmas crackers, place cards..... imagine it is Christmas Day back in the 80s! 

Then for breakfast, treat the kids to something special like chocolate pancakes or those Christmas Tree shaped crumpets you can buy. This works really well on a school day too and is a special way to start December. Make sure you have Christmas songs playing in the background. 

Do Something Charitable 

Helping a good cause over Christmas is always a nice thing to do. There are lots of opportunities from donating to a food bank to creating a food hamper for a family in need or helping the homeless. 

Bake Your Own Christmas Cake 

I love making a homemade Christmas Cake. I follow this recipe which has been inspired by Mary Berry. It makes the house smell lovely and it is always nice to offer guests a slice with coffee. 

Put Together Christmas Survival Kits for Your Friends 

It is always lovely to treat your friends so why not put together a little gift bag with a few Christmas essentials for them and leave on their doorstep at the start of December? A mini bottle of Baileys, face mask, little candle, hand cream and chocolate doesn't cost much but will be a gesture that is much appreciated. 

Grow Candy Canes on Your Lawn 

I always wish I had done this is when my three were little. Before bed, get the kids to sprinkle jelly beans on the lawn and then in the morning, as if by magic (*wink) , Candy canes will have sprouted up. 

Bake Gingerbread Cookies for Your Tree 

I love the smells associated with Christmas and one such smell is Gingerbread. We like making Gingerbread Cookies together for our tree (grab the recipe here). Not only do they look fab but they leave your room smelling festive throughout the season too. 

Also, I will never forget the year I came downstairs and discovered that two of our cookies on the tree had huge bites out of them (thanks Heidi). 

Make Paper Chain Decorations 

The kids like using Christmas wrapping paper to make paperchains which they decorate their rooms with. It is super easy to do and looks great - a perfect after-school activity for December. 

Christmas Bedding 

We have our own Christmas bedding but I have yet to buy any for the kids - I think that will change this year though. It is a fun little way to add a touch of Christmas to their bedrooms. Try and avoid anything too childish and you will be able to use the same bedding every year until your kids leave home. 

Let the Kids Decorate their Own Tree 

We sometimes put a second tree up in the conservatory which I let the kids go wild with and decorate themselves. The decorations they make at school all go on there and although it looks a bit of a mess, they absolutely love doing it. 

Some people let kids have a tree in their bedrooms if space allows which I bet kids would love. 

Plan Advent Activities 

When the kids were little, we used to fill a wooden advent calendar with little notes featuring activities. Every evening after school, the kids would open a little drawer and read the note with a little activity for them to complete.

You do not need to fill the drawers in advance and can make it so the ideas fit in with your plans you already have. Ideas include baking mince pies, watching a Christmas movie, scattering magic beans on the lawn, design a shoebox bed for Elf on the Shelf, take a family walk to see the Christmas lights in your street, make your own snowflakes, build a snowman......you get the idea. 

The excitement and anticipation of doing something special and Christmas-related each day is always lush.  

Send Homemade Cards / Christmas Drawings to the Elderly 

Who knows what the situation is going to be for visiting care homes etc... this winter. Heidi and Jack used to head to our local homes to sing carols but I guess this won't be happening this year.

Instead, why not send a festive drawing or homemade card to a random resident at your local home or to your own relatives? (obviously check you are allowed to do this first). A lovely little activity for kids and it will make someone smile. 

Plan a Festive Slumber Party

My three love what they call a downstairs sleepover and they have one every month. They bring their duvets, pillows and teddys downstairs and turn the living room into a big den. We let them stay up until midnight watching movies and sometimes leave them a secret midnight feast box hidden somewhere (we test them the location). 

It is even more exciting doing this under the Christmas tree watching Christmas films and it costs nothing. If your kids are little, you can even join them. 

Make Christmas Eve Boxes 

They aren't for everyone but I absolutely love putting together a Christmas Eve box. The kids love them and I love making them. A little box of treats to enjoy on Christmas Eve. I usually add a Christmas bath bomb, new PJs, a new book, hot chocolate sachet and some kind of chocolate treat.  I honestly think I will make these even when the kids have grown up. 

Create a Christmas Book Advent Basket 

Over the years we have collected over 24 Christmas Books. We used to wrap them and turn them into a little advent tree which the kids could open each night and we would share that story together before bed. Now it works best for us as a Christmas book basket. I asked the kids who are now older if we should maybe pass our books onto someone else to enjoy now but it was a firm no so it looks like they are here to stay. 

A basket of books by the fire is good to have if you have any little visitors over the festive period too. You do not have to buy 24 books straight away, start with a few and maybe open one every Sunday.

Check out our guide to the best Christmas Books here. 

Plan a Christmas Pamper Night 

During lockdown, we had a DIY spa day at home and loved it. We made a fresh fruit platter and smoothies, all popped face masks on and Steve gave us all a manicure. We found a spa playlist on YouTube and it was brill. I am sure it will work just as well with a Christmas theme - you can usually buy Christmas-themed sheet masks from the likes of Primark and sparkly red nail varnish will go down a treat. 

Add Pigs in Blankets to Everything 

They just make everything better! 

Turn Your Garden into a Winter Wonderland

During lockdown in Spring / Summer, we made a Scarecrow for our front garden and I popped rainbow windmills in our planters. Little ones used to stop, smile and point at them as they walked past and this always made me smile. 

I am not saying turn your garden into a huge display which will attract crowds but perhaps add a couple of points of interest which will make a little ones day. I am thinking subtle twinkly outdoor lights and a couple of wooden reindeer. Garden centres are always packed with ideas. 

Make Sundays Christmas Jumper Day 

Why not?  

Watch It's A Wonderful Life 

It is our tradition to watch this film together on Christmas Eve. It is heartwarming and definitely gives you that warm fuzzy feeling. Best enjoyed with a blanket and a mug of mulled wine. 

Go StarGazing 

With the darker nights, December is the perfect time for a spot of star gazing. Pack up your blankets, camping chairs and a flask and head out for an evening adventure. 

Enjoy Some Downtime 

Our December is usually packed with school events, pantos and festive outings. It is sad that many of these events will not go ahead but I plan on using this time to just chill for a change. My three absolutely love a lie-in and chill day and I imagine December will involve a few. 

Organise a #ShopLocal Secret Santa 

It is lovely to support local businesses if you can and I feel for so many who may be missing out on some of their usual market trade. A nice idea is to set everyone in the family a small budget and create your own secret santa with the emphasis on shopping local.     

Enjoy Christmas Day Lunch Another Day 

If you are just staying at home with your household this year, I would highly recommend enjoying your traditional Christmas Day Lunch on a different day. We often do this and it massively takes the pressure off. It means we get to spend the whole day together as a family rather than one of us being tied to the kitchen. If it is just us at home on Christmas Day, we usually prepare a lush buffet and graze all day in our PJs. 

Head the Beach for a Winter Solstice Sunrise 

Winter Solstice (the shortest day of the year) falls on Monday 21 December this year. Why not mark it with a special trip to the beach to watch the sunrise. Pack blankets and a flask of hot chocolate. The sunrise should happen at around 8:30am in the North East on this day so you might just be able to catch it before work/school. 

If the Winter Solstice date doesn't work for you, you could do this on any day in December - I bet it is a lush way to start Christmas Eve too. 

Create Homemade Gifts Together 

A Homemade Gift is always appreciated. I recommend trying our slow cooker chocolate orange fudge. Delicious and easy for the kids to help with. 

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30+ Ways to Have a Magical Christmas at Home



1 comment

  1. Aww! What lovely ideas. I am really looking forward to Christmas this year. I think we might be doing a few of these things. Great ideas. x


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