If you’re anything like me, you have a serious love-hate relationship with winter.
I mean, I think that fluffy white stuff called snow is absolutely gorgeous — but as soon as I have to go out and drive in it?? I immediately wish for the sweltering days of July.
So I’ve come up with a list (because we all know how much I will always love a good list) to help make these cold, dark days of winter a lot more fun.
Have a few favorite winter pastimes of your own? Share them with us in the comments below, tag us (@ShesIntentional + #ShesIntentional) in a picture on Instagram! We can’t wait to see what you’re up to these days!
1. Personalized music playlist.
If you’re crazy about Pandora or Spotify, have you tried Apple Music’s radio? Seriously. It’s on my top list of favorite things these days — right up with raindrops on noses and whiskers on kittens, and even the snowflakes that stay on my eyelashes!
There is nothing worse (in my opinion) than tuning into 101.7 (local Christmas radio station) and only hearing the SAME.EXACT. seven Christmas carols. Really. I can’t even handle it.
So, I hopped on Apple Music and created my own playlist of over four hours of music. That’s wayyyy more than seven songs, darlings. And the majority of the songs I hadn’t even purchased — they’re just there. Right in Apple Music. Waiting to be played. Waiting to be sung along to. Waiting to bring a whole lot of happiness. (This isn’t even paid advertising, yo. I just really like Apple Music that much. Try it out!)
I do a LOT of driving these days, and my personalized playlist keeps me movin’ and groovin’ in my car. (If you see me, please don’t wave. I’ll probably be embarrassed that I was caught!) I listen to it while writing Christmas cards, while wrapping gifts. Even writing this post. Hmmm. I might have a bit of a problem with Christmas music….
Or…. use this Intentional Christmas Playlist we created for you last year on Spotify!
2. Go to a Christmas concert.
Granted, Christmas is only ten days away and most concerts are probably either sold out or over by now, but Google your general local area and see what kind of festive concert you can find. Orchestra, band, maybe your favorite worship band, maybe a local church is putting on a free event.
Festive concerts are the perfect way to get into that wintery, Christmasy spirit! Dress up in your fanciest dress, your favorite stilettos, throw on some fur and you’ll be ready to take on the season like never before!
But be warned… once you start this tradition, you’ll want to keep it up all year-long! It really is that wonderful. Promise.
3. Go ice-skating.
I don’t care how many times you fall.
I don’t care how scared you are.
Preferably to an outdoor rink, but if you live in sunny Phoenix or something I realize that is probably not an option. (And then this entire post is likewise a waste of your reading time. But I digress).
The outdoor skating rink that I learned to ice-skate on twenty-five years ago (what?! I’m really that old?!) just reopened this winter in my hometown and I am ecstatic. Like I don’t even know what to do with myself. Ice-skating makes me want winter to last forever. (Like I said.. serious love-hate relationship with the white stuff over here.)
You see how important this is to me, right? So go ice-skating. For my sake. And then take lots and lots of pictures and tag us on the insta. Because I wanna see you having fun!
4. Throw an after-Christmas-party.
Look, I absolutely adore Christmas. I do. But what makes my heart so so so sad is when it’s over — all the lights come off the houses, the Christmas trees go away, and it’s life as normal.
Except with a whole lot of wet, cold snow.
And that is NOT festive to me.
So throw a holiday party AFTER the holiday. Keep the holiday happiness around a little longer. Invite your co-workers to a coffee mug exchange party, or an ornament exchange (they’ll all be on super sale after Christmas — über cheap gift! ha!), or just a coffee-drinking party and play your Apple Music playlist (if you’re like me and listen to Christmas music pretty much all year-round… or just make a new non-Christmasy one.).
Or……. Have a de-decorating house party — because who wouldn’t want to come help you clean up all of your Christmas decorations?! Make sure you provide lots of food for that one though if you want your peeps to come!
5. Have a cookie baking day.
This is, like, my favorite day of the year.
My very European family has all kinds of family recipes for THE most delicious cookies ever, and every year we get together and have a whole day of baking.
It’s so joyous. It’s so memorable.
It really is.
And make sure to invite someone you don’t know very well — because that friendship will probably turn into the forever kind! (Speaking from experience: I once invited an acquaintance I had only met twice to my house to bake cookies with me.. long story short, she’s now one of my best friends. All because of the cookies. So, now it’s your turn!)
Ok. So maybe portions of this list were a bit silly.
But Christmas and the rest of the winter season will become whatever you make of it. It can be cold and dark and dreary, or it can be cold and dark and absolutely tons of fun.
So make your holiday season a whole lot brighter with intentionally being present, intentionally having fun, even intentionally being silly sometimes. You’ll smile. You’ll laugh. And it’ll be great. Capture the moment with your iPhone and share it for friends across the world to see. But then don’t forget that some moments are best remembered non-documented on Facebook — and be absolutely present for those.
And darlings? Merry Christmas. From me to you. May the next couple of weeks fill your heart with joy. May your days be filled with peace. May your smile be one of sincerity.