10 Last-Minute Christmas Gift Ideas

Are you looking for last-minute Christmas gift ideas? Use the Internet to find the best digital Christmas gift options to finish the rest of the shopping. Print your gift, slip the copy into a card, and you are done. Check out the following for last-minute Christmas gift ideas.

Photo by Brett Sayles on Pexels.com
  1. Gift Cards: Almost all major retailers offer gift card options. Also a gift card is a great way to purchase groceries for a person who may need a little extra help with food.
  2. Magazine Subscription: Magazine delivery can be in print or digital form. Your gift will last throughout the entire year.
  3. Subscription Box: From the Wizarding World to foods around the world, a subscription box has something for everyone. The boxes can be a one-time purchase or longer.
  4. Concert Tickets: Going to a concert is a great gift. The tickets will easily turn into a lasting memory.
  5. Movie Tickets: Popcorn, candy, and a pair of movie tickets are a perfect last minute Christmas gift.
  6. Theater Tickets to Live Performances: Tickets to a live performance is a great gift for the theater lover on your list.
  7. Restaurant Gift Certificates: Buy a meal at a local restaurant to be delivered. Or purchase a gift certificate to use later.
  8. On-Line Classes: Do you have a person on your list interested in photography, writing, cooking, or crafting? Purchase an online class for further inspiration.
  9. Car Related: Does someone on your list need a tune-up, oil change, or new tires? Purchase the car related maintenance to use later.
  10. Pay a Bill: Often the best way to help someone at Christmas is offering to a bill. The gesture is a great gift especially for someone on a limited budget.

Merry Christmas!

55 Holiday Songs to Add to Your Christmas Playlist

Do you find yourself singing along to holiday classics or turning up the radio to listen to a new Christmas song? For decades, Christmas music has been a major part of the holiday season. Finding the best songs for your Christmas celebrations is essential for creating a holiday atmosphere to remember. Be forewarned, you may find yourself singing out loud in front of guests.

Please note: “As an Amazon affiliate, I earn income from qualifying purchases.”

Photo by cottonbro on Pexels.com
  1. It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year – Andy Williams
  2. White Christmas – Bing Crosby
  3. Last Christmas – Wham!
  4. All I Want for Christmas Is You – Mariah Carey
  5. The Christmas Song (Merry Christmas To You) – Nat King Cole
  6. Christmas Time Is Here – Vince Guaraldi Trio
  7. Christmas Eve/Sarajevo 12/24 – Trans-Siberian Orchestra
  8. Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas – Judy Garland
  9. Frosty the Snowman – Gene Autry
  10. Angels We Have Heard on High – Josh Groban & Brian McKnight
  11. Let It Be Christmas – Alan Jackson
  12. Underneath the Tree – Kelly Clarkston
  13. Christmas Cookies – George Strait
  14. Sleigh Ride – Ella Fitzgerald
  15. Little Saint Nick – The Beach Boys
  16. Mele Kalikimaka (Hawaiian Christmas Song) – Bing Crosby
  17. Santa Baby – Eartha Kitt
  18. Blue Christmas – Elvis Presley
  19. Run, Rudolph, Run – Chuck Berry
  20. Jingle Bell Rock – Bobby Helms
  21. Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree – Brenda Lee
  22. Carol of the Bells – Trans-Siberian Orchestra
  23. The Chipmunk Song (Christmas Don’t Be Late)
  24. Jingle Bells – Ella Fitzgerald
  25. Christmas, Baby Please Come Home – Darlene Love
  26. Winter Wonderland – Dean Martin
  27. A Holly Jolly Christmas – Burl Ives
  28. Merry Christmas, Baby – Otis Redding
  29. Happy X-Mas (War is Over) – John Lennon
  30. Please Come Home for Christmas – The Eagles
  31. Where Are You Christmas – Faith Hill
  32. Feliz Navidad – José Feliciano
  33. Baby, It’s Cold Outside – Dean Martin
  34. Silent Night – Boys II Men
  35. Merry Christmas Darling – The Carpenters
  36. I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus – Jackson 5
  37. Peace On Earth/Little Drummer Boy – David Bowie & Bing Crosby
  38. Wonderful Christmastime – Paul McCartney
  39. Hard Candy Christmas – Dolly Parton
  40. Deck The Halls – Mannheim Steamroller
  41. Do They Know It’s Christmas?
  42. Santa Claus Is Comin’ to Town – Bruce Springsteen
  43. Fairytale of New York – The Pogues
  44. We Need a Little Christmas – Angela Lansbury
  45. Believe – Josh Groban
  46. Joy to the World – Aretha Franklin
  47. O Come, All Ye Faithful – Faith Hill
  48. It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas – Michael Bublé
  49. Mary, Did You Know – Mary J. Blige
  50. Christmas Isn’t Canceled (Just You) – Kelly Clarkson
  51. When My Heart Finds Christmas – Harry Connick Jr
  52. Pretty Paper – Willie Nelson
  53. Snow – Leslie Odom Jr.
  54. My Favorite Things – Julie Andrews
  55. O Holy Night – Céline Dion

What’s your favorite? Merry Christmas!

Hashtags for the Christmas Season

Christmas is a wonderful, magical season. If you are sharing business or personal posts on social media, hashtags are essential for maximum viewing. Check out the following hashtags for inspiration for the Christmas season.

Photo by Brigitte Tohm on Pexels.com

#Christmas (simple but effective)

#Christmas2021

#Holiday

#Holidayseason

#Christmasseason

#Christmasdecor

#ChristmasTime

#MerryChristmas

#Christmasvibes

#Handmade

#Homemade

#HyggeChristmas

#HappyBirthdayJesus

#CelebrateChrist

#ChristmasIsComing

#ChristmasCountdown

#Winter

#FirstDayofWinter

#Snow

#IBelieve

#Believe

#IBelieveInSanta

#Santa

#SantaClaus

#MrsClaus

#Rudolph

#ChristmasMood

#ChristmasEve

#ChistmasMagic

#HappyHolidays

#ChristmasCheer

#Love

#Peace

#Joy

#PeaceOnEarth

#ChristmasList

#NiceList

#NaughtyList

#ChristmasPJs

#FamimlyChristmas

#FriendsChristmas

#LetItSnow

#ChristmasJoy

#ChristmasEve

#ChristmasDay

#AllThingsChristmas

#SpreadKindness

#TisTheSeason

#ChristmasSweater

#OhChristmasTree

#Nativity

#ChristmasStory

#MeetMeUnderTheMistletoe

#Blessed

#FelizNavidad

#ChristmasDinner

#ChristmasFood

#BeMerry

Christmas Preparations in October

Is the cooler October weather making you think about the upcoming holiday season? Are you on a tight budget this year? Or do you just want to start preparing for Christmas early? Starting Christmas preparations in October is an excellent way to get the most out of the holiday season.

Think Lists (and More Lists)

Whether you use your computer or a spiral notebook, lists are essential to staying organized during the holiday season.

  • Christmas Gift List: Who do you plan on buying gifts for this Christmas? A gift-giving list is a perfect place to start. Don’t worry if you forget someone. You can add to your list as the holiday season draws closer.
  • Size List: If you plan to purchase sweaters, pajamas, or other clothing items, start a size list. Keeping everyone sizes on one list is ideal for shopping, especially if you come across deals.
  • Gift Ideas: Do you already know what your family wants for Christmas? Make a gift-giving idea list for each person. Many stores have clearance items or other cost-saving deals right now. Maybe you will be able to check off a couple of things early.
  • Christmas Cards List: Due to social distancing and other guidelines, many family reunions, birthday parties, graduations, weddings, and other social gatherings were put on hold for a later date. Sending your family and friends Christmas cards lets them know you care. If your crafty, make handmade Christmas cards to send to your loved ones.
  • Food Menu: Make a list of recipes, Christmas Eve, and Christmas Day menus. Write out the groceries needed to make everything on your list. The task provides an idea of the cost.

Budget

Use your lists to set a budget for the holiday season. If you get a weekly or bi-weekly paycheck, consider putting a portion of the money aside for Christmas preparations. Check weekly store ads for deals. Shop the clearance section. When possible, buy early.

Start Your Christmas Buying Now

Obviously, buying food at this time is not advisable. But, picking up other items, including gifts, is a great way to prepare for Christmas.

  • Stocking Stuffers: Small items are an easy add-on to your grocery list. For example, right now, many school-related things are on sale. Colored pens, pencils, watercolors, crayons, small notebooks, USBs, earbuds, markers, and other school items are great stocking stuffers.
  • Gifts: Toys, DVDs, clothes, and books are easy early buying gifts. Now bigger items such as electronics, televisions, or computers are often on sale during the holiday season. Waiting to purchase big-ticket items may be beneficial to your budget.
  • Stamps: Depending on the amount of Christmas cards you plan to send out, consider purchasing a book of stamps each week. The price of stamps adds up quickly. Spreading the cost over time is ideal.

Starting Christmas preparations in October can ease the stress of the holiday season.

What is a Christingle?

Did you recently hear the word Christingle? Do you know the meaning? Christingle is a symbolic way to celebrate the Christian faith. Dating back to the mid-1700s, Christingle was part of a German worship service. The minister gave the children a lighted candle with a red ribbon.

In the late 1960s, Christingles became popular in England. Generally, Christingle services are held the week before or part of Christmas Eve services. Making a Christingle is simple. However, each piece has a specific meaning.

Items Needed:

I used the candy that I had on hand.

  • Orange: The base of the Christingle is an orange or tangerine representing the whole world.
  • White Candle: Standing tall and straight, the white candle represents God giving light to the world.
  • Red Ribbon: Tying the ribbon around the orange, represents the blood of Jesus and dying on the cross.
  • Four Skewers or Toothpicks: The four toothpicks represent North, South, East, and West. They also represent the four changing seasons.
  • Pieces of Dried Fruits: In addition to dried fruit, you can use nuts, miniature marshmallows, and sweets. The items represent the fruits of the Earth.

Along with the above items, you will need tin foil. The foil is only to prevent the wax of the candle getting into the orange.

Making the Christingle is simple. Slice the top of the orange. Make the hole large enough to fit the base of your candle. Before setting the candle into the orange, cover the opening with foil.

Place the dried fruits or other sweets on to the skewers.

Place the candy, dried fruits, marshmallows, or nuts on to the skewers.

Push the four skewers into the orange. Finally, wrap the red ribbon around the orange and tie.

I sat my Christingle on top of a Mason jar while I worked on it.

Congratulations, you have made your first Christingle. Consider making extras to give away. Just do not cut the hole into the orange until you are ready to give it to the intended person.

 

Reference:

The History of Christingles.  https://www.whychristmas.com/customs/christingles.shtml

Christmas Activities on a Budget

For many, Christmas is stressful due to a tight budget. Using a little creativity, you and your family can happily enjoy a budget-friendly holiday season. 

Tree Decorating

Spend an afternoon decorating your Christmas tree. Put on Christmas music or a movie to make the activity more festive. If you need a Christmas tree, check out your local thrift store. When downsizing, many people donate larger artificial trees. 

Make Christmas Ornaments

Yes, you can buy inexpensive ornaments at your local dollar store or at the thrift store. Or you can spend time making homemade ornaments. Salt dough ornaments, construction paper chains, stringed popcorn, canning lid ornaments, and numerous others are simple and inexpensive. Make ornaments as a family activity.

Make Homemade Christmas Cards

Construction paper, glitter, glue, markers, or paint can be found at your local dollar store. Spend time making together making the Christmas cards. When you are finished, hand-deliver the cards. 

Attend a Tree-Lighting Ceremony

Many communities hold tree-lighting ceremonies or present Santa with a key to the city. Attend local events. Generally, outdoor community events are free. 

Attend a Christmas Parade

Christmas parades or light parades are a fun community tradition. Many communities combine the parade with the tree lighting ceremony. 

Attend a Live Nativity

Churches often host live Nativity events. Viewing the Nativity scene does not require you to be a member of the church. Enjoy the evening.Sing carols. Many churches invite people inside to drink hot cocoa and eat cookies. Some churches even set up free activities for children. 

View Christmas Lights

When decorating a home or business, some people go all out. Every part of their property is highly decorated with lights, figures, and other Christmas related items. Take a slow drive around your community and look at the Christmas lights. The outing is a perfect evening activity. Consider packing snacks to enjoy on your night out. 

Visit Santa Claus

 Many places play host to Santa to get you to come inside the business. For younger children, visiting Santa Clause may be a dream come true. Often, candy canes or other small treats are passed out as part of the event. Depending on the business or event, visiting Santa may include live reindeer or photo opportunities. 

 

 

Host a Christmas Movie Night

Pick out a Christmas movie or cartoon to enjoy as a family. Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer or A Charlie Brown Christmas are two popular favorites. Serve hot cocoa, popcorn, or other snacks. 

 

Make Christmas Cookies

Make a batch or two of your favorite Christmas cookies. Christmas cookies would go fantastic with your movie night. 

Go to the Library

When thinking of Christmas activities, visiting a library is probably not on your list. But go to your local library to check out Christmas-related books. Reading to younger children is a great way to spend quality time. Older children may find Christmas stories fun to read. Many libraries allow you to check out movies, DVDs, or other media to make the holiday season more fun. Also, your local library may have a visit from Santa or other Christmas related events for your family to enjoy. 

Being on a budget doesn’t mean you have to skip on family fun. Enjoy the simple things, the memories you make will last forever.

Celebrating Advent

Tomorrow, December 1st marks the beginning of Advent. Running from the first of December to Christmas Eve, the Advent marks the birth of Jesus. In fact, the word Advent is actually Latin for coming. Advent is a celebration to help people focus and remember the reason for the Christmas season. 

Depending on the day Christmas falls on, Advent can begin on different days. The start of Advent on December 1st only occurs when Christmas falls on a Wednesday. Each Sunday before Christmas has special meaning. 

The Candles of Advent

Each Sunday before Advent, a candle is lite. The candles hold special meanings for the holiday season. 

  • First Sunday: A purple candle, symbolizing hope, is the first candy lite. The first Sunday candle is also known as “The Prophecy Candle” to remember the prophets who predicted the birth of Christ. 
  • Second Sunday: Another purple candle is lite to symbolize faith. The faith candle or “The Bethlehem Candle” focuses on Mary and Joseph’s trip into Bethlehem. 
  • Third Sunday: For the third week into Advent, a pink candle is lite. The pink candle or “The Shephard’s Candle” represents joy. The birth of Christ brought great joy. 
  • Fourth Sunday: For the fourth week, a purple candle is lite. The fourth candle, or “The Angel’s Candle,” represents peace. 

Depending on how you celebrate, a fifth candle may be added to Advent. Lighting a white candle on Christmas Day to celebrate Christ’s birth, the candle represents light and purity. The centered white candle is also known as “The Christ Candle.” 

In some cultures, the colors of the candles do not matter. The action of remembering Advent is an essential part of the holiday season.

The Advent Wreath

The Advent wreath is part of the candle lighting ceremony. The four candles are set on the wreath with the fifth candle (optional) placed in the middle. The wreath consists of evergreen branches woven together in a circular form. The evergreen circle represents eternity. 

Advent Calendars 

Advent Calendars are generally part of celebrating Advent. Counting down to Christmas, an Advent calendar has 24 or 25 openings. Advent calendars vary, including traditional Christ laying in the manger scenes to popular products like Harry Potter mini-figures, Lego, perfume, or jewelry samples.

Other Advent calendars are homemade with chocolate, small toys, or other treats behind each little opening. No matter the type of Advent calendar you use, enjoy the Christmas season. 

 

Please note: “As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.”

%d bloggers like this: