Once it comes to the end of August each year, some people starting counting how many weeks or even how many days till Christmas. Of course, 2020 is going to be very different for many people: no Office Parties and kids may have started thinking about what they might like for Christmas, but in many households, Christmas expenditure will have to be cut back severely!
If your household is still able to celebrate and you need to know how many days until Christmas, you can see that on the Xmas clock in the top right hand corner of this page.
If you like a big Christmas each year, you may have already started preparing as soon as the previous Christmas is over: recording what went well and what needs to be improved and starting to store decorations and the tree away ready for next year.
If you cook your special Christmas meal only once each year, it’s important to note down the cooking times and temperatures, the ingredients and any special items you include. It’s so easy to forget to buy that special ingredient or the particular temperature or cooking time needed for your turkey or special recipes but you usually remember them at the time you need them, so write them down then in your journal.
Have you made a list of all the things you need to do? The cards to send, presents to buy and wrap, guests to prepare for? You can get a download list of things to remember and budget for here.
Many work places hold a Secret Santa event each Christmas, where each worker draws another person’s name from a hat and buys them a present within a given budget. No one knows who buys which present for which person. Some families, especially large ones, make use of Secret Santa each year to cut down on overall expenditure and allow each person to receive one bigger gift rather than many smaller gifts.
Not long now until Christmas and Christmas Eve. Have you got your Christmas Eve sorted?
Christmas Eve Boxes
Maybe you are going to get Christmas Eve boxes or Christmas Pyjamas?
Of course, you may have had a difficult time this year 2020, with Covid and lockdowns? Maybe you are having to cut back greatly for Christmas, compared with other Christmases and perhaps you are even having to redefine Christmas?
Make It Special
If so, is there anything you can think of that would help make Christmas Eve special for you and your family? Something that doesn’t cost anything, even if you have to prepare ahead of time? Maybe have a sofa night, wrapped in a warm blanket, sipping hot chocolate and watching a film? Maybe watching the Norad Santa tracker showing where Santa’s sleigh is? You can check out the Norad Santa Tracker from 1 December 2020 here. You may be able to find something in a local charity or goodwill shop?
If you are totally stuck for food and other necessities, as many people are this year, then check out your local foodbank. I know that my local foodbank is preparing to help out a number of people and families this year, in different ways, including volunteers preparing a plated Christmas dinner for those alone and hampers for those with very little.
Neighbors Friends And Family
If you are OK for Christmas and Christmas Eve, what about your neighbours, friends and family? Is there anything you can do for them at what may be a difficult time?
The film and song below were created some years ago and I love this song about Christmas Eve. Maybe you will enjoy it also?
And a quieter song from the Florin Street Band if you are feeling more reflective for Christmas 2020
Children can be very giving, especially when they understand that not everyone has as much as them and giving is also a good thing to learn. Giving can be a part of an Advent Calendar, so here are 12 acts of kindness for kids to do as part of their Christmas Advent Calendar. For some of these, you will need the ingredients ready ahead of time, unless you have the time to go out and source them before starting. For others, you will need to consider safety and caution and you will also have to consider those who may be shielding from coronavirus.
Make Cookies For The Neighbors.
Give Someone A Compliment.
Visit someone who is housebound.
Make and deliver a card for someone in your area who is lonely.
Make an elf basket and leave it on someone’s doorstep with an anonymous poem. This is also known as “you’ve been elfed” and is a neighborhood game, as it is a type of “pay it forward” action.
Older teens could volunteer at a homeless facility or collect for charity.
leave a Christmas card on someone’s windscreen
give a blanket or pair of socks or gloves to a homeless person
leave a card or “beautiful” note in a friend or parent’s bag or pocket or somewhere for them to find
take toys to a charity
help out in a foodbank or donate food
call a distant friend or relative you haven’t contacted for a while.
leave a treat for the mailman / garbage collector
pick up litter
take supplies to an animal shelter or donate money to their vet or food supplier to help out with their finances
Paint stones or small rocks and dot them round your neighborhood for people o find
pay it forward in a food queue, pay for the coffee of the person behind you.
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