This year Christmas will unlikely be the same. The tills won’t be ringing with the same vigour because of business closures along with the worst unemployment rate and retail spend in years, according to economists, retail analysts and trade unions.
But who’s to say we can’t have ourselves a Merry Christmas after all?
Despite everything that has transpired this year and all the stress we have been put under as a nation and globally, the festive season is a time of year that everyone looks forward to – and now that it is finally here we should not squander it!
Make the most of this holiday season by trying out our list of things to make and do and places to visit to put a boost in your holiday cheer.
Whatever route you choose, as long as you’ve got the spirit of Christmas in your heart, you really can’t go wrong.
Anyone can run out and purchase something from the store, and while you can probably find a gift your recipient will love, DIY Christmas goodies just seem to mean a little bit more (and they’ll most likely save you pennies!).
Winter Wonderland Snow-globe Shakers
Reuse empty salt and pepper shakers and fill them with salt (the snow), mini bottle brush trees, reindeer figurines, jingle bells, sprigs of pine branches, colourful feathers, or any other pretty fillers you have on hand for an adorable winter wonderland display. This is perfect for the kitchen countertop! Get creative and make a scene that’s special to your person.
Citrus Sugar Scrub
For a gift that’ll nourish the entire body, make a three-ingredient body scrub using coconut oil, sugar and fresh orange zest. Mix them all together and voila! Add a pretty ribbon or a cute quote that is sure to make your loved one feel special.
Create professional-looking coupons (either printed or hand designed – your choice!) for this year’s Christmas gifts. From a movie night to breakfast in bed, personalise your coupons for the special ones in your life. These would be perfect to gift along with a handmade holiday card for your loved one.
Instagram Picture Frame
Celebrate all of their monumental moments from the year (yes, there have been a few!) – for example, a new baby, a wedding, their new lockdown puppy and more – by placing their best Instagram snaps in a desktop-friendly picture frame.
Spread some joy
If 2020 has taught us anything, it’s how much the people in our lives mean to us, so go ahead and spread some happiness where you can. Write down how much the people you love mean to you and send it out to them. Make Christmas cookies and leave some with your friends and neighbors — or drop off pizza or other treats at a local nursing home, hospital or fire department to brighten the lives of the people there. If you make just one person happy every day you’re making the world a better place!
Make special memories
You and your household members may be a little tired of each other at this point, but think of fun ways to help set the holiday season apart. Create a little advent calendar with festive activities for each day, rather than a treat. Your Christmas activities don’t have to be elaborate – it could just be drinking hot cocoa together wearing Santa hats, watching one of the best Christmas movies on Netflix or planning an amazing Christmas eve dinner where everyone gets involved – but it’ll help make the season brighter.
Have a family sleepover
Decide on a weekend when everyone is available and round up those family members to have a jolly good sleepover. If this means gathering around the Christmas tree and singing all your favourite carols or getting out the snacks and having a Christmas movie marathon then WHY NOT!?
Invite someone over for dinner
For any number of reasons, there are many people who are alone during the holidays. If you know someone alone this season, open your house to them for a meal. Rather than infringing on your holiday traditions, it may just become one of your favourites.
Buy coffee for a stranger
Next time you roll through the drive-thru or make a pitstop at your favourite coffee shop, offer to pay for yourself and the person behind you (if they have already ordered, the cashier should have their bill handy). Or better yet, leave some extra cash (if you are able to) with the cashier after you pay and ask him/her to pay for the following customers until the money runs out. Either way, coupled with their favourite beverage, this pleasant surprise is guaranteed to brighten someone’s day.
The Neighbourgoods Market is an independent initiative founded in 2006 by entrepreneurs Justin Rhodes and Cameron Munro, whose aim is to revive and reinvent the Public Market as a civic institution. This award-winning market features over 100 specialty traders every Saturday, creating a weekly platform for local farmers, fine-food purveyors, organic merchants, bakers and distributors, grocers, mongers, butchers, artisan producers, celebrated local chefs, and micro enterprises.
The market is housed in an old sky-lit brick warehouse and courtyard at the famous Old Biscuit Mill in the industrial neighbourhood of Salt River, just next door to Woodstock. It is as much a source for farm fresh as well as organic foods and locally produced specialty goods, as it is a meeting point to enjoy community, swap ideas and stories, and become educated about what we buy and eat by going directly to the source. A calendar of seasonal events, specialty festivals, and live music features throughout the year.
Visit them on Facebook for more:
ART IT IS
Proudly promoting local artists – Art It Is began in Joburg and recently opened its doors in trendy Woodstock bringing a contemporary and vibrant addition to a fast emerging art scene. They collaborate with designers, decorators, architects, corporates and everyday people to finish their spaces with spectacular art pieces and also have an extensive art library that’s not only available on site to view and purchase but also on the online gallery.
Each exhibition showcases established artists alongside talented emerging artists with pieces that artists build, make and paint that depicts their strengths and interests and what’s important to them and what inspires them.
See more at: https://www.artitis.co.za/artworks/
Tintown, situated at 12 Mason’s Press, 7 Ravenscraig Rd, Woodstock is a supplier and manufacturer of metal keyrings, home decor and other pieces of metal art.
Their range has expanded to include both wood and metal products and ranges from small items like key holders and keyrings, fridge magnets and jewellery to functional homeware and large art installation.
Find the perfect gift for a loved one (or even for yourself!) at the link below to view their Christmas best sellers:
Vegan Goods Market Woodstock
The Vegan Goods Market takes WOODSTOCK at 196 Victoria IN ADDITION to the The Source Yoga Studio, Constantia.
This market hosts events and initiatives that bring awareness to veganism and living in harmony and care of people, animals and our planet.
The Vegan Goods Market’s mission is to provide convenient access to ethical, plant-based food and other vegan goods , whilst offering shoppers a communal environment for social interaction with like-minded people..
The Market draws on local resources and specialists as the primary traders, giving them an opportunity to expand their trade. The Market aims to provide the trader with sufficient space and clientele to make it a sustainable market.
The Vegan Goods Market takes its role of providing ethically sourced produce, free of all animal products, preservatives and chemicals, very seriously. The market also sees itself as an educational resource for its community, regarding vegan living, healthy, ethical consumption and growing a consciousness about veganism and living in a kind, eco-friendly way.
Visit their Facebook page to view the next event for you and your family to enjoy:
Bones Kitchen and Bar at the Palms Lifestyle Centre
Planning a year-end lunch for your work team? Bones restaurant is the perfect venue, offering seating inside the spacious high-end bistro’s slick interior or outside in the courtyard for extra social-distancing precautionary measures.
Acclaimed restaurateur Rudi Minnaar (known for starting Beluga in 1999, among many other restaurant endeavours) opened up in the Palms Centre in late 2018 and we’re so happy to see they survived lockdown amidst a flurry of restaurant closures in Cape Town this year. Let’s ensure they survive the year!
Make a booking by giving them a call on 021 286 6207 or visit www.boneskitchenandbar.co.za
A final thought this holiday season – when spending on holiday treats or Christmas gifts, think about supporting our small local businesses that need it most, whether it’s your local butcher or farmers market or local artisans making handmade goods. It’s been a tough year, and considered spending at this time can help everyone see the year through!