Simplify your Christmas with these Christmas Un-plugged ideas from Susan Fox 24/7 MOMS Family Life editor
Draw names for a gift exchange.
Host a family holiday pot-luck; take the load off of that one person who always seems to do all the work in your family.
Consider only exchanging home-made Christmas gifts.
Make a contest out of who can wrap the prettiest packages and get everyone involved in that chore.
Volunteer your time.
Cross at least 3 things off of your to-do list (meaning, don’t do them!).
Save some things to do for after Christmas to help alleviate let-down and stress! In most cities you can still visit Zoo lights and similar things until the New Year.
Make couch time for family hugs every night.
Make a donation to a charitable organization instead of gifts: Here are just a few ideas
www.charityguide.org The American Institute of Philanthropy provides a watchdog service to help donors understand how well their money is being spent. This watchdog service uses ratings criteria to evaluate nationally prominent charities. Based on its assessment, American Institute of Philanthropy assigns letter grades to charities.
www.samaritanspurse.org Operation Christmas Child.
www.uso.org/operation-uso-care-package Give to US Troops.
www.donate.worldvision.org Sponsor a child or even give a goat to a family in need in honor of someone you love with World Visions innovative Gift Catalog.
www.ridewelltour.ning.com Blood: Water Mission is a grassroots organization that empowers communities to work together against the HIV/AIDS and water crisis. Its core purpose is to build community through creative social action.
www.wish.org Make-a-Wish Foundation.
www.angeltree.org Angel Tree is a ministry that gives the gift of hope to children of prisoners.
www.comapassion.com Compassion International is a Christian child advocacy ministry.
www.Toysfortots.org sponsored by the US Marines.
Create Memories - Not Debt:
Instead of spending lots of money on gifts, do things together as a family. It can be as big as a vacation or small things that you can do together. Spend a special weekend together or do several fun outings spread out over the holiday season. Some ideas cost money, while others don’t.
Go to a Christmas play, concert, ballet, musica.
Spend an afternoon baking cookies.
Go out to eat.
Stay in a local hotel.
Have a family movie date.
Go downhill or cross-country skiing.
Rent a cabin in the mountains or woods.
Relive special memories going through family picture albums.
Play board games.
Go on a night time snow walk.
Read a book out-load as a family.
Have an indoor picnic.
Sleep under the tree in sleeping bags.
Do something nice for a neighbor or shut-in as a family.