A couple of weeks ago when a big snowstorm swept through the area, some friends of mine lost power, so my husband and I welcomed them into our home for the night. Shortly after our friends arrived, our internet and cable connection went out. Later that night, we lost power! Despite losing our modern conveniences, we still had a good time together, and it reminded me of this Waitrose ad I saw earlier this season.
The folks in the ad were trapped in an inn due to a storm, and despite the inconvenient situation, they managed to enjoy the time together. I imagine it was uncomfortable at first, seeing as most of them were strangers to each other, but then they made the best of the moment and connected with each other. Isn’t funny how at the end of the video when they finally have the chance to leave, they choose to stay? (I’m sure all the food had something to do with it!) In the same way, when we lost power at my house a fortnight ago, it forced us all to get off our phones, tablets, and computers and really be present.
This Christmas, I invite you to take a “tech sabbath.” Resist the urge to pull out your phone and instead engage with those around you. Whether you’re spending time with loved ones you see daily or only once a year, make this Christmas one where you unplug. Afraid you’ll be bored? Here are some ideas to help you get ready ahead of time.
Activities & Games:
Pull a few board games out of the closet so they’re nearby whenever someone wants to play. My favorites right now are Sequence, 7 Wonders, and Quirkle.
Create a reading nook. Put books and magazines in a basket and set it in a corner with pillows and blankets.
Set out a few extra blankets on the sofa for folks to snuggle up.
Round up crossword puzzle books, word search books, Sudoku books, etc. If you have a lot of family, you may want to have several books on hand. I like to scoop them up at the dollar store.
Play “I Spy.” This game usually entertains my nieces and nephews for 30 minutes.
Play Tic-Tac-Toe. If 3×3 games are too easy for you, play a 4×4 or a 5×5 game instead! Put a stack of white copy paper in a basket or bin with pencils so you’re ready to play.
Tell knock-knock jokes.
For creative folks, keep a couple skeins of yarn in a basket under a coffee table. When inspiration strikes, you can make festive pompoms with just yarn and scissors.
If the kids are getting restless, head outside to play a game of tag or hide and seek.
If the kids are getting too loud or rowdy, try playing Sleeping Alligators. To play, the kids must lay on the floor without talking or moving. The goal is to be the one who “sleeps” the longest. If a player moves or make a noise, they’re out of the game. Note: I find that this game doesn’t last very long, as kids are quite squirmy, but it does provide a brief quiet moment!
Ask basic questions such as: How’s life? Your job? Your family?
Do you any upcoming travel plans?
What was your favorite part of this past year?
What are looking forward to in the new year?
What’s your favorite thing to do?
What are your hobbies?
What’s something you’ve always dreamed of doing?
If you could travel anywhere, where would you go?
If you could be an animal, what would you be?
How are you planning to unplug this Christmas? What fun games or activities does your family like to do together? Let me know in the comments below!
This card cracked me up! As a taco lover myself, I think it seems totally reasonable to leave tacos out for Santa. Featuring a hand drawn illustration, send this silly card to someone special [since tacos are special]. If you need more taco goodness, check out this set of four different holiday cards.
With only 7 days left until Christmas, hopefully you are just about done with your shopping, wrapping, and baking. If so, take time this week to go on a date night with your sweetie or plan a night out with pals to have drinks at one of the Miracle locations. Miracle is a holiday cocktail bar pop-up that is only open from Black Friday until Christmas Eve, and they are currently in 50 locations across the United States, Canada, Brazil, Panama, France, Greece, and China.
While many restaurants and bars may put up a tree or a bit of holiday decorations during December, Miracle pop-ups are covered with Christmas cheer from top to bottom and wall to wall. The ceiling is dripping with lights, the tables are covered with wrapping paper, and there is Christmas decor galore. I even read about one location that has a gingerbread house photo booth! The decorations are retro and kitschy, bringing forth feelings of cozy nostalgia.
Miracle does offer some snacks and small plates, such as charcuterie and cheese, manchego stuffed dates, spinach salad, Chex mix, cookies, and lamb meatballs. However, with merry names and holiday flavours, the real star of the show are the cocktails. Here are just a few drinks that caught my eye:
Snowball Old Fashioned – gingerbread bourbon, wormwood bitters, lemon zest
You’ll Shoot Your Rye Out [Ha! Get it?] – pumpkin spiced rye whiskey, Budweiser-marshmallow syrup, egg
Fa La La La La, La La La La – gin, aquavit, hazelnut liqueur, cardamom, vanilla, lemon, egg white, club soda
Showing off his toothy grin, this chipper shark is just too cute! Made of felt, this ornament can be personalized with the recipient’s name, and the name plate is available in your choice of 33 colours. This ornament would be perfect for any children or other shark lovers on your list.