Have you been wondering how to get that festive feeling in 2020? I certainly have.
All those little outings, traditions and things we do to make the season festive seem to be scattered with uncertainty.
But, if you look a little closer there’s plenty of things still to do and tweaks to traditions that can be made.
These suggestions will help you find a way through what will possibly be one of the strangest Christmas seasons we’ve ever had.
Pull on your Christmas jumper, strap on your reindeer ears and get ready to wobble your belly like a bowl full of jelly, because I’m here with some ideas to inject some festive feels into your life.
How to get that Festive Feeling in 2020
I don’t know about you but I’m determined to not let this pandemic ruin Christmas. My turkey and vegetables are on order and I’m on the hunt for a real Christmas tree, next up, how to get that festive feeling!
But, one of my biggest concerns is that I’ll struggle to get that festive feeling this year. I think everyone will have this worry, has the thought crossed your mind? It certainly has mine.
The brilliant thing is there’s still plenty to do at home and here’s a few suggestions to get your festive creative ideas going…
Book an Online Panto
Just because the theatres are closed doesn’t mean you have to miss this year’s panto season. Many theatres have come up with online streaming solutions so you can still enjoy this favourite festive tradition.
My recommendation would be to check to see what your local theatres are doing.
But, if you’re struggling to find a panto with online streaming tickets here’s some suggestions of theatres and online offerings…
- Watch Jack and the Beanstalk by Panto Online
- Tickets start from £20
- By former Blue Peter presenter and critically acclaimed pants write Peter Duncan
- Watch Cinderella an Interactive Online Pantomine by Panto Live
- Tickets from £15
- Watch Snow White in the Seven Months of Lockdown by Charles Court Opera
- Tickets start from £25
- Family friendly and adult versions available
- The Santa Show Online by The Plowright Theatre
- Tickets from £10
- Sleeping Beauty by the Original Online Panto Company
- Tickets from £15.50
Or buy a ticket to a traditional theatre musical show on ‘The Show Must Go On’ on YouTube.
Take a virtual stroll around a house or castle
Does anyone else love visiting country estates, palaces and manor houses over winter? I’m particularly fond of heading to National Trust sites which are normally decorated so beautifully for Christmas.
But, this doesn’t mean you can’t get your fill of fancy estates because here’s some amazing ones you can tour virtual online…
- Windsor Castle
- Buckingham Palace in London
- Hollyrood House in Scotland
- Edinburgh Castle
- Blarney Castle in Ireland
Make your own Christmas Decorations
There’s nothing quite like bringing out decorations year after year, especially ones you’ve made yourself.
Not only is it a great way to get in the festive spirit but it could also make a nice gift!
Make your own Christmas Crackers
Upcycle those old toilet rolls and out of date magazines with this easy to follow Christmas cracker craft project…
…the best part of this is deciding the jokes or challenges to go inside, it’s a great excuse to be as silly as you like…
See your local Christmas lights
One of the things I thought I was going to miss out on was going to other cities to see the Christmas lights. I love how some clever lighting, some fir trees and a Christmas market can transform a place you’re familiar with into a winter wonderland.
However, much to my delight I’ve seen the lights go up on Instagram in cities, towns and villages across the UK.
Winchester is very close to me and is incredibly pretty to walk around, and you’ve guessed it, the festive lights have just gone up!
If you’re heading out for your daily walk, why not postpone it until the sun’s gone down and go for a wander to see the lights.
Make your own festive gin
Flavouring gin is a simple and quick way to level up your festive cocktail game.
A seasonal woodland twist to your gin is flavouring it with apple and blackberry and it’s makes a lovely fruity drink over Christmas. Be warned, you need about a month for this to infuse, so make sure you’ve got enough time.
If you’re looking for something a bit quicker try making Earl Grey Tea Gin. This one you can do in 48 hours, all you need to do is add some very good quality earl grey tea bags to the gin and give it a good shake and leave to infuse. At the 24 hours mark turn the bottle upside down at least five times.
After 48 hours give it a taste, it should be perfect! Be warned, if you leave the tea bags in for longer it can get a bitter taste, so definitely make sure you remove the tea bags.
Pair it with cloudy apple juice and elderflower cordial to make a cocktail called a Mad Hatter’s Tea Party…
- 50mls earl grey tea gin
- 25mls elderflower cordial (or more to taste)
- Top up your glass with cloudy apply juice
Binge Christmas Movies
There’s so many Christmas classics to put on and let’s not forget all those really cheesy Netflix Christmas films that are so bad they’re good.
Here’s a list of films that are sure to get you in the festive mood…
- It’s a Wonderful Life
- White Christmas
- Love Actually
- The Holiday
- The Grinch
- Four Christmases
- The Snowman
- The Christmas Chronicles 1 and 2
- The Polar Express
- Jingle All The Way
- Home Alone
- Die Hard
- The Nutcracker and the Four Realms
- Last Christmas
- Miracle on 34th Street
- Christmas With The Kranks
- The Santa Clause 1 and 2
- The Nightmare Before Christmas
- Harry Potter – Alll of the films! Always.
- The Muppet Christmas Carol
- Arthur Christmas
- Meet me in St Louis
- The Night Before
- Jack Frost
- Deck the Halls
Phew! That list should melt your heart and re-set your moral compass!
Whether it’s making your own minced pies or baking a Christmas cake, the smell of seasonal bakes wafting through the house is really good.
If you’re cooking skills leave a lot to be desired pop a bottle of mulled wine on to heat up and it will do the same trick with less of the faff! Equally, pop your mince pies in the oven to warm up and you’ll also get a bit of a festive hit from that too.
Whatever your vice is at Christmas from mince pies to fancy truffles make sure you’ve got some in for the time you’ve got off. It might sounds obvious but it’s a quick way to securing that festive feeling.
My vice is really good Christmas coffee from Fortnum and Mason’s and some Hotel Chocolate and Charbonnel et Walker Pink Champagne Truffles. These items bring me endless joy so, whatever does it for you, make sure you’ve got it on order.
Oh AND I have to have leftover turkey sandwiches with Walkers plain crisps on either Christmas night for supper or Boxing Day. White bread, proper butter and a thin layer of cranberry sauce. Silly traditions but after all the rich food, something simple is BLISS!
As we probably won’t be going out, make a few investments in some new board games. I’ve already ordered Harry Potter Trivial Pursuit and a coupe of others to expand my collection. If you’ve got any good suggestions please pop me a message – I love discovering new games!
Game time is one of my favourite parts of Christmas. I am a competitive person and love a bit of friendly rivalry. If you’ve not had much luck at Christmas games and need a bit of a helping hand, check out this article from Stylist Magazine. It’s all about ‘How to win the annual Christmas board game showdown’ and it might just give you that competitive edge this year.
Here’s my favourite games my family play at Christmas time…
1. Articulate – BEST.GAME. EVER. It’s also wonderfully competitive. Players have to describe a word without saying it while the rest of the team guesses. Simple but effective.
5. Parlour Games and Challenges– every year my family find silly parlour games for us to play, like picking up as many M&M’s in 30 seconds with chopsticks or how far can you roll a Malteser down a tape measure without it falling off, and we always have so much fun. Try finding some silly games like this, over the years it’s become a wildly competitive addition to our game playing.
How to get that Festive Feeling in 2020
What a list! I really hope this gives you some ideas to spark those festive feelings this year when things might feel a little darker than normal.
Don’t be afraid to whack on the Michael Buble early and pour yourself a mulled wine because ITTTTT’SSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSS CHHHHRRRIIIIIISTTTTTTMMAAAAASSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSS!
And, you better have just done your best Noddy Holder impression then!
Let me know what helps you to feel festive in the comments below.