Weekend Projects

7 Small Ways to Kick Start Your Holiday Plans This Weekend (Or at Least Start Talking About Them)

published Oct 2, 2020
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Credit: Anna Spaller

Apartment Therapy Weekend Projects is a guided program designed to help you get the happy, healthy home you’ve always wanted, one weekend at a time. Sign up now for email updates so you never miss a lesson.

So much of what has made this pandemic period difficult is the uncertainty. Coupled with canceled plans and the prudence of not traveling, you might feel like it’s way too challenging to even think about the holidays at this moment. But doing the possibly painful work now allows you not only to plan what you’ll do, but to make the best of it and look forward to what you can do.

Allow yourself to get used to the idea of how different things may look this year—it could help make the whole situation go more smoothly. There may be traditions you miss and people you won’t get to hug and hang out with this year. Sit with these feelings for a bit and grieve this loss—it will allow you to shift into looking forward to what this year’s holiday season will bring. Among other things to look forward to, I’m anticipating the coziness of a seasonal reason to hunker down at home in sweats and sweaters. And while I’ll mourn missed music and dance recitals and that my distance learning school age children won’t be bringing home any hand print googly eyed reindeer art, maybe this will be the year I have time to teach them how to make the fried jelly donuts I used to make as a child in Israel.

This weekend, don’t allow yourself to push away a topic that’s fraught with unknowns. Instead, just sit with it and the emotions it brings up. Make your holiday plans into a something different looking—but still every bit as love-filled—in this (I’m going to say it) unprecedented year.

Credit: Cathy Pyle

This Weekend: Start to make some holiday plans.

Without the built-in structure of your usual events and gatherings, your holiday season calendar might read like a bleak blank slate. But your time is in your hands, and you can handle it with care and fill it with things that fill your heart and soul.

Here are some suggestions:

  • Plan ahead to write and mail hand-written cards for loved ones.
  • Bake the cookies, the cinnamon rolls, the traditional caramels, even if you won’t be sharing them at your usual exchanges. Drop them off for neighbors, friends, etc.
  • Make a movie marathon list.
  • Finish that project, even if it’s from decades ago. Your 10-year-old’s baby album, the blanket you started crocheting two summers ago, the garage clean-out marathon, they’re all game. Having them completed will bring you joy.
  • Take advantage of the time for slowness. String popcorn on fishing wire, hand cut snowflakes and hang them around the house. This year is your chance to do the things you picture yourself doing but never actually have time for.
  • Turn traditions that may have been “small” in previous years into slightly more robust ones this year. For instance, curate a hot chocolate tray with extra goodies instead of just having hot chocolate mix available.
  • Set a date to drive or walk around and look at holiday lights. It’s one holiday tradition you don’t have to change, or a perfectly safe one you can add to your calendar!

What are you planning on this holiday season?

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