The festive season many of us spend the whole year not-so-patiently awaiting is finally upon us! Especially considering how 2020 has seemed to wrap a good seven years in one, it is almost hard to believe we have actually made it to December; but alas, here we are. I know how easy it can be to get swept up in to-do lists and expectations. So in a time where we can all benefit from truly making the most of each festive moment, I have compiled a few top tips to get you on your way to infusing holiday cheer into each and every day.
Make Fairy Lights Your New Best Friend
It’s almost magical the difference that can be made when the right string of lights is put to proper use. Whether you have one set or twenty, golden or multicolored, a house full of people to share them with or a space all your own, these lights have an undeniable impact on the atmosphere and attitudes of those bearing witness. Perfect for lining a window or mirror, accenting a wall, displaying photos, adding to a Christmas tree and infinitely more possibilities, what remains constant is the ability of these lights to mesmerize onlookers one and all.
Quick disclaimer that once you hang your first set of fairy lights, it will likely become a challenge to imagine the room without it. I can definitely attest to this, which is why the best part of all is that these do not need to be exclusive to the holiday season, but rather can be made use of to help keep the magic alive all year long.
It’s All About the Ambiance
When this time of year comes around, many of us are striving to attain a largely indescribable feeling that is equal parts unique and universal. If you find yourself feeling a bit detached from the cheer of the holidays and looking for the best way to ease into all the excitement without becoming overwhelmed, I have two words for you: candles and music. You will be amazed by how effective a good candle can be in boosting one’s mood. Being enveloped in nostalgic, comforting scents has the power to transform any given environment into an infinitely more cozy and inviting space. If you are ready to bring your surroundings to the next level, create a playlist with your favorite holiday music and witness how even the most mundane tasks become far more bearable. A prime part of getting in the holiday spirit is uncovering that all-important festive feeling, and nothing enhances a mood quite like the perfect ambiance.
You’re Never Too Old for a Christmas Countdown
An aspect of Christmas many of us are drawn to is the way it allows us to connect with the wonder and excitement we experienced as children. It was commonplace to spend the entire month of December practically bursting with anticipation wondering if the day would ever arrive, marking the passage of time based upon how many advent calendar doors were opened. Therefore, a surefire way to infuse a daily dose of holiday spirit is to invest in a countdown of some sort. There are hundreds of possibilities on how to go about this nowadays, which allows for tailoring to your preferences to achieve maximum merriment levels. From classic chocolate to designing your own personalised advent calendar, taking even one minute to both appreciate the current day and return to that childlike sense of elation toward the future will work wonders for improving upon your holiday spirit.
When in Doubt, Craft it Out
This year especially, we are learning that we cannot allow our happiness to solely depend upon grand adventures and events, but must instead find value and comfort in the little things. Thus, creativity is going to be key in ensuring our holiday cheer meters are filled to the brim. Whether you are a master crafter or you feel you have not touched a glue stick since the first grade, I promise there is a holiday craft for you. The best part is that many of these crafts are all about utilizing what you already have, meaning they encourage you to be as spontaneous as you wish or need to be at any given moment. If you have any sheet of paper and scissors, you are already on your way to a snowflake; if you have popsicle sticks, glue, paint, pipe cleaners and polaroids, you have yourself the workings of an ornament; if you have paper, pens and paint, custom holiday cards are an option; the list goes on for eternity. Allowing yourself even five minutes to do a holiday craft each day will provide you with the boost of joy we all need from time.
If All Else Fails, Cookies Never Will
If you find yourself with the fairy lights turned on, candle burning, music playing, calendar opened and crafts made but still missing the one final binding ingredient of this recipe for holiday spirit, have no fear! The tried and true activity of baking cookies is sure to do the trick as it combines the above techniques into one enchanting activity which is very therapeutic in nature. Baking will appeal to the crafters as they design and shape the dough, will contribute positively to the ambiance with the heavenly aromas produced, will draw upon childhood enthusiasm though the cookie decorating and will brighten moods at a mere glance similar to the impact of fairy lights. Just remember, so long as the experience brings you joy, it does not matter whether your recipe has been passed down for generations or you found it on the back of a box today. When scouring for holiday spirit, always keep in mind that there are few better feelings than taking the first bite of the year’s Christmas cookies.
Everyone deserves to feel the cheer this season brings, and while it may be second-nature for some, others may need a helping hand from time to time to unlock the door keeping this spirit contained. I hope these five techniques are beneficial starting points for navigating this most wonderful time, and that you find yourself reaching record levels of joy this holiday season.