Every December, the Christmas season brings a much-needed energy boost, sparkle and shine to the last month of the year. There are generally good vibes all around as people prepare to tie up loose ends, clear their annual leave, collect bonuses and sip on Starbucks toffee nut lattes.
It’s a season that’s full of traditions made and kept too. There’s the mandatory trip down to Orchard Road to snap some pics with the festive décor and lights. And, of course, presents to be bought, wrapped, exchanged and opened. The Christmas tree needs to be set up, decorated and piled with presents. For some, it’s a day in church singing Christmas carols and revisiting the Christmas story.
The truth is that sometimes the list of traditions and Christmas routines can become meaningless. Surely that’s not how Christmas was meant to be.
Read on to find out the ways you can make this year’s Christmas an extra special one for you and your loved ones!
#1 Dig into history
We bet you’re scratching your head at this one! What’s so fun about history, you might ask? Well, take a quick moment to take this simple quiz below.
- What does “Feliz Navidad” really mean?
- Where did the act of gift-giving come from?
- Why do Christians celebrate Christmas?
- Who invented the Christmas log cake?
- How did people start believing in Santa Claus?
Well, did you know all the answers? This is your chance to do a bit of research, excavate the online archives and discover what the elements of Christmas, which we so often simply take for granted, are all about.
If anything else, your research will provide you with plenty of trivia to amuse and entertain family and friends over Christmas dinner.
#2 Host a Christmas party for your neighbours
Christmas is typically a time spent with loved ones, most especially your immediate family and closest friends. But not everyone has the luxury of such time or the blessing of a close-knit family to turn to. If you’re staying in a flat, chances are you’ll know of one such family on your floor – a home where Christmas is just another public holiday to be crossed off the calendar, with no special reason to celebrate.
This year, why not set yourself the challenge of bringing joy to your neighbour (or neighbours) by planning and hosting a Christmas gathering in your home?
Invitations can be by word of mouth or even knocking door to door at every home on your floor. Alternatively, you can just invite a couple of families that you are relatively more familiar with. Another option is to invite the families whom you regularly meet when you bring your kids down to the playground. After all, everyone is in the vicinity, so distance shouldn’t be a major factor.
If you don’t feel up to whipping up a Christmas feast, you can consider ordering online. Or make it a pot-luck event where everyone contributes a dish or two.
Photo credit: Morganfield’s
In terms of entertainment, you can turn to good old-fashioned board games or rent an interesting movie. Grab some wine and chocolate for the adults to unwind and enjoy a relaxing night, while the kids have free rein with the toys.
#3 Be a blessing to those in need
Then there are those whom you may have never met but are sorely in need of some good cheer. They may not have the finances, energy or time to be in a Christmassy mood. Some may feel lonely during this festive season as well.
Christmas is a season of giving. If you’re celebrating Christmas, why not invite someone to share in the festivities?
Just An Extra Chair is an initiative by Singapore Kindness Movement that seeks to connect people who have nowhere to go during festive seasons such as Christmas, Chinese New Year, Hari Raya or Deepavali with people who have an extra place at their dining table.
It’s a great way to include someone in the festivities and you can also make a new friend!
You can also consider holding a flea sale and donating all proceeds to charity. Volunteer with a social centre in their Christmas event for the community or deliver Christmas packs to families who need the extra helping hand.
We know everybody loves receiving Christmas presents. Why not consider these ideas where you can buy gifts and at the same time, give back to the community?
⇒ Related Read: Where To Volunteer With Kids In Singapore
By Dorothea Chow
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