7 Ways to Get Back the Childhood Magic of the Holiday Season

Posted by: Shel 25 Comments


Think back to the last stress-free holiday season you enjoyed. Remember a time when the most stressful season event was trying not to peek at wrapped Christmas presents when your parents weren’t home? Many of us have to go back to  our childhood years to find a time that was more simple pleasures than commercialism. Grab your mate and get back some of the joy and magic of the season by allowing yourselves a moment of regression to childish delight. Here are 7 ways:

1. Flop yourselves on the ground and make a snow angel. No snow? How about an outdoor childhood equivalent such as jumping in a pile of leaves, laying on your backs in the grass comparing cloud visions, or swinging on playground swings? The point is a moment of escape from your adult world concerns.

blog snow angel

2. Switch out your evening beverage for a steamy cup of hot chocolate. With a (psychologically) healthy spoonful of marshmallow fluff. Or start your day off with a cup of cocoa complete with a whipped cream mustache. There’s caffeine in chocolate, too, ya know!

3. Curl up with your mate and a soft blanket to watch that Christmas classic. Charlie Brown’s Christmas, Rudolph the Red-nosed Reindeer, How the Grinch Who Stole Christmas. Without the kids. This view is just for you two with your favorite days-gone-by snack.

courtesy of Wikipedia.org
courtesy of Wikipedia.org

4. Focus on the mini mysteries of the stocking stuffers.* Sure, presents under the tree can be fun. But remember the excitement of pulling out the little packages from our stockings? How we delighted in even the practical fillers like a new toothbrush or scotch tape? Exchange your stockings on Christmas Eve when it’s just the two of you – and enjoy a playful step back in time.

5. Make an old-fashioned tree decoration. Paper chains for garland can now be glossy if you trade out the old construction paper for magazine strips. And stringing popcorn serves the trifold purpose of enjoying a retro moment, having a crunchy snack, and feeding the wildlife after the tree comes down.

courtesy of www.humanesociety.org
courtesy of www.humanesociety.org

6. Build a gingerbread house. Go ahead – get creative. Just because it’s a traditional childhood activity doesn’t mean it has to be a traditional house.

gingerbread house7. Sing Christmas Carols. Remember when we sang with gusto without a care in the world as to how we sounded? Go back there. Enjoy your own smile-inducing-potentially-imperfect holiday duet.

*For great stocking-stuffer ideas, suggestions, and tips, join me next week for a 5-Day Stocking Stuffer Extravaganza!


What do you and your mate do to recreate the simpler-time childhood magic of the holiday season?


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  • Before we moved close to my parents, Garrett and I sang Christmas carols all the way to my parents’ home on Christmas eve. Life has changed and that’s a tradition that has been lost. So, a couple of nights ago, we tucked our pajama clad babes in the car to drive to see the lights at Honor Heights in Muskogee. We had the best time, swapping turns picking songs…until the kids begged us to stop. I’m already looking forward to tormenting them next year.

    • Shel Harrington

      That’s too funny, Brandi! Next year why don’t you give the kids the option of dealing with your singing in the care or at their school??

  • Great ideas. This time of the year it’s so easy to get rushed and frustrated. I intend to follow several of your suggestions (looking for the cocoa right now!)

    God bless,

    • Shel Harrington

      I’m with you on the cocoa, Susan! When I’m doing it with whipped cream, I like to add a dash of cinnamon. Thanks for visiting!

  • I look forward to your stocking stuffer tips! Wonderful suggestions, Shel.

  • These are some awesome suggestions, and reading through them reminded me that I actually have a mini-gingerbread village set that I need to put together.

    • Shel Harrington

      A gingerbread village? That’s new to me! Will you be posting a picture somewhere so we can see it?

  • Lol! I meant to say FUN post!

    • Shel Harrington

      Glad you caught it, Jen, before I had time to get all paranoid wondering what that was suppose to mean!

  • Such a post. I’ve been wanting to make a popcorn string!

    • Shel Harrington

      I loved the Humane Society version – things that would be well received by wildlife after the tree is down.

  • Over the Thanksgiving holidays I had the pleasure of “raking” leaves with my three-year-old grandson. It reminded me of the unadulterated joy of jumping into a huge pile of leaves and scattering them to the wind. A great way to kick off the holiday season! Wonderful list, Shel!

    • Shel Harrington

      Thanks, Dee Dee! So I’m dying to know – did you allow yourself the indulgence of a good jump??

  • I love snow angels, but we never get enough snow. I’m a fan of making carpet angels in the middle of the living room though!

    • Shel Harrington

      You must have some of that cool, sink-right-into-it, lime green retro shag carpeting. Well, ‘retro’ for you – more like nostalgic for me! Happy Thanksgiving, Marisa!

  • Wonderful suggestions, Shel! Happy Thanksgiving!

    • Shel Harrington

      Thanks, Luanne! Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours, also!

  • we enjoy attending the traditional Messiah choral concert locally!

    • Shel Harrington

      I bet that’s lovely, Lin! Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family!

  • Love the suggestions, Shel. With the children and grandchildren so far away, husband and I can be children clear to Christmas. Love it. Have a blessed Thanksgiving and thanks for your blog.


    • Shel Harrington

      I hope you and your husband have many wonderful playdates – good practice for when you catch up with the younger set in a few weeks! This wonderful writing community I have connected with is definitely one of the blessings I’m thankful for, DiAne! Happy Thanksgiving to you and your pal!

  • These are great suggestions, Shel. Tonight Rudolph the Red-nosed Reindeer in on CBS. I plan to watch it and I can’t wait!
    Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family!

    • Shel Harrington

      I’m a bit of a sucker for the hot chocolate! Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours, too Jill!

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