Although we get movies, ads and TV shows selling us the heartwarming wholesomeness of Christmas, as a time of family reunion and abundant love (and food!), you know deep down that, in reality, it might fall a bit short. (Except for the food part. The food part is always on point!)
So, instead of yawning your way to midnight, or burying your face in your smartphone like all your nephews and nieces, how about spicing up this Christmas gathering with FUN activities for the whole family?
Fun & Games 101
Nothing passes the time as pleasantly as a little bit of gaming with friends and family. Although we can always rely on the ole trusty classics (board games, card games), you can always come up with your own made-up activities. What do you have a surplus of around the house? Snow? Snowman gladiator arena! Or snow angel competition if snowmen decapitation is not your thing. Gift wrap? Boom, competition. As long as you don’t sever ties with those overly competitive friends or family (you know what we mean. UNO, anyone?) a good, enjoyable time will be had by all.
Murder Mystery Party
Speaking of games, this is a growing trend—murder mystery parties (more appropriate for the 15+ crowd), which immerse all the dinner guests into an interactive whoddunit! Complexity levels may vary; there are games that require some book-keeping, while others keep it super-simple with the rules. The great thing is that, for starters, it’ll make for an unforgettable experience unlike any other Christmas dinner, and time will surely fly by. So put on your thinking caps, super sleuths!
Debate Team Shenanigans
You’re stuck in a house with friends and family who may have VERY diverse or different opinions, beliefs and experiences. One common-sense advice that’s always rung true was keeping sensitive topics out of the discussion, because, well, they’re sensitive topics. But how about this: Why don’t we engage our loved ones in conversation about those very same ‘taboo topics’? And not in a confrontational way, either—as an exchange of ideas and thoughts on how and why we think this way? Many could agree that current social and political climate all over the world is very polarizing. Maybe we just have to listen to others who think differently, and engage in civil discourse. At least before the eggnog really starts to hit home.
I know, I know. Your eyes glazed over when they read ‘slideshow’, huh? But wait, come back! There’s many ways to make them fun. First of all, since it’s a family and/or friend gathering, make a slideshow where everyone’s included. We’re not talking about ‘My vacations in France 2017’; nobody likes looking at pictures or ‘stories’ that don’t involve them. Instead, make one celebrating the years of friendship. Show your children or nephews how they looked when they were months-old…and the joy they brought the family, and my oh my how they’ve grown. Remember someone who’s passed on, and the wisdom they left those who stayed behind. With minimal work you can make an absolutely moving (and fun) tribute that reminds everyone why they are gathered together, celebrating as a family or friends. It’s also a great opportunity to show how long you’ve come on your weight loss journey!
The Revenge of the Ugliest Christmas Sweater
Ah…a true classic: Ugliest Christmas Sweater Competition! Be sure to let everyone know beforehand, and have a little prize ready for the winner (maybe…another sweater? Tee hee hee!) and let the games begin! Hopefully grandmas won’t be offended if one of their previous gifts gets chosen as the ‘winner’. At least they can say they have award-winning knitting skills!
A Christmas Inception!
How about a game about giving out gifts…while you’re giving out gifts?! If you’ve never heard of Dirty Santa (aka Yankee Swap, Chinese Christmas, Scottish Gift Exchange, Thieving Secret Santa, etc), in this game you ask your guests to bring a (wrapped) gift. You count all the participants and scribble down numbers on slips of paper, from 1 to whichever amount is playing. Then all participants draw and, starting from the person with the number 1, they get to pick one of the gifts. However, they also have to open it before everyone else. The person that comes next gets to pick and open a present too, but they also get to decide whether to keep the gift they unwrapped….OR swap it for any of the gifts previously unveiled!
Hopefully, these ideas will prevent your Christmas gathering from becoming a snoozefest and instead becoming something to look forward for the coming years! And speaking about swapping, have you checked out our healthy Christmas recipes: tips and swaps for Christmas Dinner?
Share this article with friends and comment below if you have other suggestions to make your Christmas get-together a hit!