This year has gone in a blur! Can you believe there are exactly 30 days until the most significant holiday (at least for me and some foreigners living in Shanghai)? The period leading up to Christmas Day is the Advent Season. Advent is a Christian season of preparation for the birth of Jesus on Christmas Day.
Different cultures and religions have different ways of celebrating. Here at yaean design, part of our company culture is celebrating the holidays by decorating our office with simple decorations that everyone pitches in to put together. Sometimes we would incorporate crafting our decorations with recycled materials. Another tradition is 24 days of fun activities where each team member takes a turn and opens one of the "gifts" under our tree. Each will have a simple task or fun activity for the day. This tradition has proven to bring everyone holiday cheer and is a perfect way to start the day. Finally, we have a secret Santa gift exchange before everyone goes on holiday.
This year, we want to share some holiday vibes to lift your spirits amid uncertainties and disruptions. It's all quite simple, really. From 01 December until 24 December, we will post a little activity, ideas, or prompt to guide you through creating a meaningful and festive holiday.
Be sure to check back each morning.
Here are some family-oriented ways of getting into holidays with fun and meaningful activities (non-religious) that have been a big hit in my home.
1. Collect 24 books on your bookshelf, wrap them up, and put them under the Christmas tree or by your kids' bedside. (Hint: Don't show them which books you are wrapping, make this a surprise.) At bedtime, they can open 1 "gift" that you can read to them. This activity is for my kids, the best! I would wrap up any winter-themed or Christmas books we had.
2. Buy chocolate-filled Advent calendars, which are now widely available in Shanghai. Great motivation to get kids to get up early for school EVERY DAY! My kids wanted to open each day's chocolate before we had to leave for school, and that meant getting up earlier than usual.
3. DIY an Advent calendar that you reuse every year; just put a chocolate or tiny toy in each pocket.
4. Check out the different Christmas trees around Shanghai.
5. Visit a Christmas market.
This season is about injecting magic into the holidays while reflecting on how we can prepare our hearts and homes as we draw close to saying goodbye to this crazy year.
Come along and join our 24-day prompts starting in 01 December. This will be fun! I promise!