DO HAPPY FRUGAL CHRISTMAS
Christmas should be a time of joy and sparkle, but financial worries can take the shine off the festive season. However, a simple December 25th can be even more rewarding than an indulgent splurge. We have some money-saving alternatives for presents and decorations here, while Green Parent writer Amanda Williams’ family have created their own rules for present buying around Solstice; find out more here. Or find our guide to rekindling the wonder of the season and focusing on presence rather than presents here
In addition to saving money, perhaps you’re dreaming of a Green Christmas; find our guide to cutting down on waste this December here, and find out how two readers are celebrating in more eco-friendly fashion here.
December isn’t all about the consumer-fest that Christmas can be. Learn about winter festivals from around the world here, and find new traditions to weave into your own family customs.
EVENT SING AND MAKE
After last year’s quiet festive season, London’s Southbank Centre will this year be reverberating to the sound of choirs singing. On Friday, enjoy a free show from The Choir With No Name, who run singing groups for homeless people and others on the edges of society. Saturday and Sunday afternoon will see mindful crafting activities soundtracked by mood-boosting vocal performances, and everyone’s encouraged to join in! 5+, free. Find more here.
MAKE DIY GREETS
Need some ho-ho-home-made Christmas card-spiration? We love these lino printing ideas and this, while these are more complicated, but just gorgeous. Or try sewing! Thes geometric designs look clean and contemporary but yarn trees are easier for kids to make. For something more spectacular, get crafting a pop-up tree greeting. Easiest of all, try recycling last year’s cards for this season – some great ideas here and here.
EVENT ART FOR ALL
Immerse yourselves in a world of texture, light and sculpture in Hackney this weekend. Families with a child or children with disabilities are invited to a free art workshop at Autograph’s gallery in Hackney. Led by experienced SEND artist educator Katriona Beales, it’s a chance to dive into a fun afternoon of art making and experimentation. Free but booking essential. More here
EVENT BRIGHTON ROCKS
Take some family time away from the crowded shops at Brighton Dome’s Family Fun Day this Saturday. Pop into the beautiful venue in the centre of the city to make a party hat, enjoy some live music and show off your moves at a family friendly disco. Free, but booking essential
WHAT WE’RE READING 52 things I learned in 2021 “If you want useful answers, ask questions that respect the answerer’s time, energy and attention.” “We’ve been drawing butterflies wrong forever.” Editor and forward-thinker Tom Whitwell’s guide to the things he’s learned each year highlights terrific trivia, deep, soulful reads and genuinely useful guides. Read more here
WHAT WE’RE WATCHING Malory Towers: Cosy, moral, and literally old-school, this tale of boarding school life has been updated (a little). It may be starchily wholesome, but its message is goodhearted and it’s a snug family watch in the depths of winter. Series two has just started. Find it here