Fun Family Holiday Festivities

Cielo, a Los Angeles dreamer, enjoys recognizing images in the occasional cumulus cloud that meanders through the California sky, documenting interesting events and quotes and observations, and learning about different cultures, customs and lifestyles.

To observe the various festivities of the holidays, many of our schools and workforces grant us with a couple of weeks of vacation. For many students, this is about two weeks of lounging around the house, watching holiday episode marathons and facebooking while their parents work or cook the holiday meals. However, if you are sick of the old routine and want to spice up your holiday season—no pun intended—consider partaking in the following activities with your family this year!

Volunteer

The holidays are more about giving than receiving. Now, this does not exactly mean that you have to make sure you go out and buy your daughter or mom or father those shoes they have been eyeing to illuminate your selflessness, but that there are others out there who can use your help. Using volunteermatch.com or flyers in local stores or announcements from clubs at school, you will be able to find various events you can do over the break such as sorting and distributing canned foods for needy families or serving food at a local shelter. This is a great way to assist others in obtaining actual necessities rather than falling victim to the materialistic-mall rush of last minute gift shopping. There are even more fun-oriented events such as Christmas caroling and tree trimming.

Give Cooking Lessons

Unless you yearn to be alone in the kitchen, having a helping hand would probably be lots of fun. Instead of glazing the ham or basting the turkey or husking the tamales in your lonesome, invite the family in to learn how to cook (or bake) some of the family traditions! While they are enjoying cooking, you can sit back and relax for a while as you supervise and point out what to do with the cranberries.

Keep Fit

At the start of every year, gyms are packed with people whose New Year’s resolution is to get in shape this year. There is also an array of articles filled with tips on how to burn off all the weight gained from all the gravy, stuffing, and pie. Be ahead of the pack! Grab the family and take a brisk walk around the neighborhood! You will get a great workout along with a lovely view of your neighbor’s holiday decorating skills. If you have a gym membership and it is a bit too nippy out for a walk, hit up your gym of choice and take a class.

Make Gifts

Are there shirts lying around the house that no want wants to claim? When’s the last time you popped open your set of paints? Give those clothes a new life by sewing them into wallets or bags! It’s eco-friendly and fun! Buy plain t-shirts and add a personal touch by decorating them with fabric paint into patterns that suit your friends and family.

Go Local

Perhaps your son’s high school is offering their rendition of The Nutcracker or your neighbor’s church is hosting this year’s holiday fundraiser or the outdoor skating rink was just installed down the road. Gather up the kids and head on over. Because it is local, it will usually be cheaper, less crowded, less of a drive, less hassle. And you will know that you are directly supporting your community while having a great time with the family.

Whatever you end up doing this holiday season, enjoy it with the people you love! And if you do gain a bit of weight, that’s okay: this time only comes around once a year! Happy Holidays!

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