Christmas can be difficult. For every Brady Bunch-like family who started making plans months ago as restrictions on the coronavirus pandemic eased, there are plenty more who find it all overwhelming.
If you’ve just suffered a loss, for example, or can’t be with your family, being alone for Christmas can be quite a difficult time.
Or if you just want to spend the day doing something a little different from the usual plan, we’ve put together a list of alternative things to do on Christmas Day.
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If the kids woke you up too early and you need a sudden boost of energy, how about a swim in cold water?
In Lancashire Cumbria you will find various places to swim on Christmas Day, including lakes for a wild swim session.
Just make sure you stay safe – follow all directions – and don’t go alone.
Keep in mind that there are often organized Boxing Day dives that you can attend.
Do something with your hands.
Be honest: how often do you do this (besides the dishes and the keyboard)? Take out the scissors and construction paper and create your own cards. Strip an old chair and polish it.
Paint an intricate design on an old cabinet. Make a teddy bear. Or do a snow cat if you have snow. Take out Lego pieces, toothpicks, matches, puzzles, knitting, origami – and focus.
We already know that the UK has some of the darkest skies in Europe.
From the dazzling beauty of the dark Lake District skies to the twinkling lights seen from your own back garden, there are plenty of opportunities for this alternative Christmas activity.
Who knows… You might even spot Santa Claus!
Help a charity
One of the best gifts you can give on Christmas Day is your time, and you can even change someone’s life.
It’s so easy to get lost in the excitement of gifts, great food, and seeing loved ones. So make a change this year to support those who need your help.
A crisis requires the efforts and skills of volunteers to have an impact that can change the lives of homeless people. You can make a difference by donating, fundraising, campaigning and volunteering. The association needs a range of volunteers during the holiday season, including kitchen staff, drivers, artists and key service providers.
Throw a Christmas party for revenge
If you spent last year’s Christmas riding solo, you are fully allowed to throw a Christmas party for your loved ones, as long as – and we can’t stress it enough – you are following the Covid protocols. Check the temperatures, make sure everyone present is vaccinated and have fun.
Try another culture
Here’s a fabulous idea for non-traditional ways to celebrate the holidays! Pick a country everyone agrees on and celebrate Christmas the same way that country does!
Decorate your home in a similar style, prepare your dishes in the same way and choose the traditions of this country to carry out at home! It will be an interesting experience for everyone.
Show all the enemies that you really are the Mariah Carey of your group of friends by singing “All I Want For Christmas Is You” at the end of a merry Christmas karaoke night. Bonus points if you remember all the words after several glasses of wine
Do something ridiculously boring
Change your Facebook header image. Your alternatives to celebrating Christmas don’t have to be grand or exciting. Or change your Twitter profile. Add a board on Pinterest. It’s a sneaky way back to social media, where you just might find other people who feel like you about the holiday season.
DIY a home photo booth for a photo shoot.
Improve your Instagram game with a home photoshoot that can be made even more joyful with precise props.
Go to work
Have a thought for those for whom December 25th is just another business day. Police, ambulances and firefighters are all on duty, while doctors, nurses and other staff are required to keep hospitals across the country running. Farmers, chefs, waiters and even journalists have to work hard on Christmas Day.