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It's the most wonderful time of the year, and you don't have to buy a lot of gifts or even go out to celebrate. Just stay at home with your nearest and dearest. Here are some frugal Stay At Home Festive Holiday Activities To Keep The Whole Family Happy. It is not about spending money or running around town, but staying at home. It is about what you do together as a family that makes the holidays special.
Decorate cupcakes using holiday sprinkles, make color-changing cake batter snow angels over/in/on top of after baking. Make ice cream cookie sandwiches & snow-ice cream, decorate sugar cookies with holiday sprinkles and frosting. Figure out how to make gingerbread cookies and bake away!
2) Create Holiday Tree Ornaments
Use old broken crayons, cut them up into pieces. Put an oven-safe dish (with water in it) on the lowest rack of the oven at 200 degrees Fahrenheit for 5 minutes to melt the crayon pieces. Drop spoonfuls into ornament cups before they harden, then let them harden overnight. When you take them out of the molds, wrap the string around them to make hangers if desired.
3) Holiday Games & Silliness
Play holiday-themed games such as Flashlight Candy Cane Hunt and Holiday Taboo. Watch holiday movies you've always wanted to watch, such as Home Alone, National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation, The Polar Express. Gather around the fire and tell each other stories about your favorite holiday memories.
4) Deer Spotting / Snow Watching
Go outside and try to spot deer or catch a glimpse of the first snowfall. Bring binoculars and a camera, just in case. Backup all of your family photos on an external harddrive and let a it play as a slideshow on the TV.
5) Tree Trimming
Decorate the tree with old ornaments that are no longer used or broken ones that are fixed. Make some popcorn garland by microwaving it, then knotting it onto a string of yarn. These things add a fun element to the tried and true. Of course, finding and hanging your favorites from year after year is nostalgic and fun too. We collect an ornament from every place we travel and it's fun to relive those moments when we hand those decorations on the tree.
6) Have A Cookie Exchange Party
Assemble all the ingredients ahead of time that your friends & family will be bringing to your cookie exchange party. Get out plates and napkins for them on the big day so they won't have to do any dishes! Watch Elf while doing this if you have never seen it before.
7) Do Handmade Gifts
Hand-made gifts are more special than store-bought ones anyway because of the amount of love put into making them. This can be done with whoever is hosting what activity or at multiple parties taking place at different locations. Clean up the craft table(s) before Grandma gets there!
8) Host a Christmas Story Exchange Party
Invite your friends and family to bring their favorite Christmas stories for everyone to share. Watch The Santa Clause 1 & 2 while doing this if you have never seen it before. Remember that there will be lots of people writing tiny notes with glitter or glue pens on tiny slips of paper or small post-it notes.
9) Visit A Nursing Home Or Family Member's Residence
Help them bake or cook meals during festive holidays. Help them put together gift baskets for their own adult children who have moved away, or just to help them clean and organize their residence for the holidays. If you're visiting a nursing home, be sure to bring a little gift along with you, there are so many things you can bring that don't cost a thing.
10) Camping In The Backyard
Set up a tent in the backyard for a little overnight camping getaway so you can stay up late and have s'mores at night!
11) Holiday Cards, Ecards & Greeting Cards
Make sure you send out the cards and e-cards before Christmas day so your friends and family can receive them in time. Order holiday cards from Shutterfly. Stick with a few designs every year to save money. Use weird or old photos of your kids for inside jokes or stories about how they were as babies.
12) Go See The Lights Or Look At Holiday Lights
Drive around and look at all the pretty lights strung up along windows and trees. Take a drive through town to see all the lit up decorations. Show your children how Santa Claus comes down the chimney -- light an actual fire in your fireplace then put on some Christmas music such as Jingle Bells, Silent Night, and The Little Drummer Boy.
13) Holiday Movies Marathon On Netflix Or Redbox
Watch any favorite holiday movies from past Christmases while relaxing on the couch. This is still one of my favorite things to do (no phones allowed!).
14) Go See The Tree At Your Local Shopping Center
There's a special feeling to it and it’s open to the public. Take pictures, listen to carolers and join them in song if you’re brave enough.
Hope this article gets you into a festive holiday mood!