5 Ways to Spread Happiness and Joy This Christmas!by Emma Dowey
What a year! I mean really, if someone had told you this time last year how 2020 would go, you'd think they were on something! It's been a crazy, strange year and this Christmas, I just want to spread some happiness. It's not going to be the same as Christmases past. But that's okay because it's all about embracing and working with what we've got. Right?
And Christmas is all about giving. And love. And family. It's a time to sit and reflect on the past year and feel grateful for what we have. Here are a few unique ways you can spread happiness and joy this Christmas, without spending a fortune. Get the kids involved, wrap up warm and cosy, and enjoy having a low-key Christmas.
1 - Reverse Advent Calendar. I love this idea because it's just so simple. Instead of forking out money on traditional advent calendars, pop an item of food into a box each day. So something non-perishable of course. Think pasta, tinned tomatoes, soups, grains, toothpaste and healthcare products. Once you get to the 24th of December, you'll have a wonderful hamper, packed full of essentials that so many families need this year. Your local food bank will be thankful.
2 - Toy Collections. It's worth having a look on your local Facebook groups to see who's collecting toys for children this Christmas. We have a local campaign - Every Child Needs Christmas. It covers the BS postcode and aims to collect toys for children who perhaps don't get the type of Christmas most of our kids are used to. It's a fantastic cause and our school gets involved too.
3 - Volunteer your Time. There are so many charities that need extra help at this time of year. Have a look on your local Facebook pages to find out what's going on in your area.
4 - Be Kind. It costs nothing and it really may make the difference for someone. We're all going through our own shit and no one really knows what someone else is experiencing. Even when you feel crap yourself, smile, lend a hand, compliment someone. It will make them feel amazing and it will make you feel great too. On top of being kind, be patient too. Christmas can be a really stressy time without a bloody pandemic to contend with. Take a breath in the supermarket while your waiting for the older guy in front to decide which cheese he wants. Use the extra minute queuing at the checkout to people watch rather than berating the checkout person.
5 - Call someone. I don't mean anyone. And I don't mean the Ghostbusters. But if you know your Nan is alone this Christmas, or your uncle doesn't have kids close by, give them a ring. Send them a letter. Make that extra effort to reach out.
You don't have to spend a lot to have a wonderful Christmas, jam-packed full of love and special moments. Look to your community for ways to spread joy. And of course, make time for yourself too. Merry Christmas!