Slow Living Activities For The Holiday Season
There's about 2 more weeks until Christmas so it's easy to feel like it's crunch time for all the fun holiday activities. This holiday season I'm focusing on slowing down, so I thought I would share some slow living activities that are enjoyable, but also intentional.
Many of these may be things you already do as a part of your Christmas tradition. But this year, instead of rushing through or feeling like you need to get one activity done so you have time for the next, do each thing slowly and intentionally, without any distractions. Leave yourself time and space to fully savor the most wonderful time of the year.
This is one of my favorite things to do during the holiday season because they turn out so beautifully and are great for making garland or tying on gifts as a topper. They have to cook in the oven for a good chunk of the day, so it's the perfect excuse to stay home and have a slow day while they are cooking. They also make your house smell amazing! Read here to learn how to make them!
Bake a pie from scratch
No offense, but anything less than homemade pie crust is totally cheating! Sorry! It's also a lot healthier for you when you're using just flour, coconut oil, salt, and water rather than a store-bought crust full of a ton of chemicals and preservatives. Take some time to fully recognize the value of working with your hands as you roll out your pie crust and make the filling from scratch. It may take longer, but craft always wins over convenience.
Stringing popcorn is one of my favorite holiday activities because it's something I used to do when I was little around this time of year. It's an activity that forces you to slow down and create something with your hands. I like to put mine on my tree inside or our pine trees outside for the birds :)
Make homemade dough ornaments
This is another fun handmade activity that requires some time in the oven. The process of making the dough, rolling it out, cutting the shapes, and decorating them when they are dry is slow but fulfilling. Read here for a dough ornament recipe.
Get cozy and wrap gifts
Shopping for Christmas presents can be a frantic and crazy part of the holiday season. Once you have everyone's gifts (or at least most of them), allow yourself to slow down and dedicate a chunk of time to wrapping presents. Play your favorite Christmas album or Christmas movie while you are wrapping and sip on a warm, yummy drink.
Watch a holiday movie all the way through without your phone
I am so terrible at watching movies and even TV shows all the way through without scrolling through Pinterest or Instagram at the same time. As a part of the slowing down process, I'm easing myself out of the multi-tasking habit. Christmas movies are only acceptable this time of the year, so I want to make it count! Make a cup of hot almond milk cocoa, give yourself extra (vegan) whipped cream, turn on your favorite Christmas special, and give it your undivided attention.
Do a puzzle
Puzzles are such a fun way to unwind but keep your mind and hands busy...without being on your phone! Putting on a Christmas movie in the background and working on a puzzle just sounds like the coziest night to me.
Make and decorate gingerbread houses
If you want to earn extra gold stars, make the gingerbread houses from scratch!
Go on a drive to see the Christmas lights
Grab a loved one and a thermos of hot cocoa and jump in the car late at night (or early at night if you're a grandma like me) to look at the lights. Put some Christmas tunes on in the background and allow yourself to get lost in the beauty and wonder with no distractions.
Delight in Christmas smells
But wait! Before you light that candle of yours, read this post first. Instead of filling your home with toxic chemicals this holiday season, choose a more natural route. Diffuse Christmas essential oil blends, create a simmer on the stove, or purchase nontoxic scented candles. One of my favorite ways to make my house smell good is to toss pine, oranges, cinnamon sticks, and water into a pot and keep it simmering on the back burner all day. Click here for a full simmer pot recipe!
I love how most of these activities involve working with your hands, something that's very important to me. 1 Thessalonians 4:11 says "and make it your ambition to lead a quiet life and work with your hands." I think that is especially important to remember during the holidays, when it's easy to get wrapped up in the hustle and bustle of consumerism.
I'm really trying to learn to be present and focus on what's in front of me. Slow living is more than just doing these activities, but being fully present and intentional during the process. I pray you are able to find some peace and stillness this holiday season.