Tis the season to splurge on hundreds ( if not thousands) of dollars on gifts, spend time with family and friends, and endure painful hours of listening tosugary-pop Christmas songs blasting in most radio stations in your poor car.
The Christmas craze starts right before Thanksgiving and ends the day after X-mas; However, most people simply celebrate it December 24th and 25th.
Why not celebrate the Christmas holiday break from December 1 til the 25th?
What I mean by celebrating is not like taking vacation time from work and staying in the Bahamas all month long but by filling your days with tiny but eventful holiday-oriented activities that gears everyone up for that special day.
When Santa Clause falls on his fat ass down your unclean chimney and stuff yours stockings with dollar store candy and quarter machine gadgets. Lest not forget how he selfishly eats all of your cookies you laid down for yourself the next day without giving you a thank you note for spending 2 hours of your live baking for them.
FYI, this entry is geared towards people who love the holidays and not to any grinches who barely stand it, as is.
1.) Go Skiing: You don’t need to be an expert skiier to try this sport out. I’m still a beginner skiier but I try to hit the slopes once a year as a way to fully engage in the holiday season. If you live in the DMV area, check out Liberty, Roundtop or Whitetail. They have wonderful beginner classes and nice slopes.
2.) Go Ice Skating: Ice skating is a fun and relaxing activity to do during this holiday season. Garden’s Ice House by Laurel has great deals and an arcade adjacent to the location, in case you want to take a break from falling down on the ice… multiple times.
3.) Gingerbread house baking: This a fun thing you can do with small kids or even besties. You can either google up how to make a Gingerbread house from scratch or cut corners and cheat this way: Buy graham crackers, milk carton, frosting, holiday themed candies, M&m’s. Drink that milk carton dry and lather frosting all over it. Stick graham crackers on it and start using your creative juices to construct a fitting gingerbread house.
4.) Christmas Cookies: It’s a given. The great thing about having a globalized economy is that you can make unique holiday cookies. Other thank making usual sugar cookies, why not try a German cookie recipe? Why not make desserts from Mexico that people usually eat during the holday season. The skies the limit and it’s a relaxing way to fight of stress and to celebrate the holiday season.
5.) Holiday 5k: The DMV area is saturated with marathons, 5k’s and all sorts of charity runs. Take advantage of this and do it. Running is a great exercise and it’s good to know that your running for a great cause.
6.) Brookside Garden Holiday Light Show. This is the only place I know that lets you walk around a christmas-lit area, with 3-d glasses that also services yummy home baked treats, cider and live entertainment.
7.) Christmas Party with friends. If you have friends, why not throw a small get-together with them. Be creative, and have holiday themed drinks, appetizers and games. If you don’t have friends, then check out www.meetup.com and join their groups to make friends.
8.) Christmas show at the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra. Every year they throw one of the most extravagant shows and the tickets range from $30-100 given the night.
9.) Write Letters to loved ones. My favorite part of the holiday season is writing cards to loved ones since this is a rare endeavor. Most people like to send E-cards and not take the time to write one up. If you visit your local Target, you can get around 1
10.) Charity Work: The best person I know who can give you charity work to do is my friend Barbara Henderson. If you follow her on Twitter @yogichi or e-mail her at Yogichi@gmail.com, she will personally let you know of great ways to give back.
11.) Tree Trimming party: My friend Nicole ( who is an AWESOME blogger, fyi) is throwing one. She had this great idea of getting all of her friends to decorate her tree and to treat it as a party. Kudos!
12.) Decorate your house: Go ahead and whore up your home with lights, fake santas and nativity scenes, galore!
13.) Local Tree lighting events. Check out Washington Post or Baltimore Sun about these events. They are frequent and so many DMV towns have them.
14.) Holiday Sundae party. Buy ice cream, candy canes, whipped cream and friends.
15.) Christmas crafts. If you go to Martha Stewart’s website you will find so many great crafts to make.
16.) Make homemade ornaments. Unsure if there is a difference between Christmas or homemade but repitition is key into remembering 🙂
17.) Breakfast with Santa. You don’t have to be a kid to join in, just bring a small cousin, sibling or a friend’s kid and join in. Baltimore Sun’s website is the best place to find one near you.
18.) Holiday Brunch at Gertrudes. Gertrude’s is a widely acclaimed brunch place in the Baltimore area. If you don’t get a table there, than make your own holiday brunch at home. Have holiday themed mimosas, desserts and brunch-y dishes. If you add Christmas movies in the background, it’ll add a cheesy spice to the whole event.
19.) Holiday shopping at a local, weekend festival. Screw Walmart. Support small businesses by visiting weekend festivals and by buying home made gifts. There are so many around the DMV area that it’s hard not to stop by.
20.) Christmas Parades. The area is rife with these parades and my goodness, they are so much fun. Check them out
21.) Go to Mass. Inspite of popular opinion, you do not need to be catholic to do this. You can go with loved ones and have a nice light meal afterwards.
22.) See the nutcracker. It’s the holiday show of the year and Baltimore is the place to see it, live!
23.) Holiday events at a local church. Most churches hold holiday parties and are great ways to meet new people. It’s also super cute seeing young kids act out in nativity themed plays, eat lunch and mingle as well.
24.) Watch Harold and Kumar do Christmas. Best movie of 2011. Please dont bring kids though, fyi.
25.) Masquerade Ball. Check out Washington Post’s website for more details.
There you have it. Twenty-five things to do before Christmas and after Christmas starts. After perusing this list, there’s no reason to be bored prior to December 24/25th. Happy Holidays!