After my husband and I had our first child, we decided No More Traveling On Christmas Day. We stay home as a family and enjoy the day with each other.
Our extended family is welcome to stop over and say hi. But, I’m not hosting and I’m not cooking a big dinner — it’s a day to seriously relax. My husband, kids, and I plan fun Christmas Day activities to do at home.
It seems more and more people are deciding to stay home for Christmas. This is especially true during the past year due to the pandemic.
Whether you’re planning to stay home on Christmas Day because you find traveling with kids stressful, or you want to be safe and avoid big gatherings this year, you may be wondering what you can do on Christmas Day at home.
Here are 25 fun Christmas Day activities for families staying at home this year.
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1. Take Your Time Opening Presents
On Christmas morning, slow things down by having everyone take turns opening their presents. This way, you all get to see what everyone else got and it makes the gift opening experience last longer.
2. Make a Festive Christmas-Themed Breakfast
After opening up presents, whip up a delicious wintery brunch. Make reindeer or snowman pancakes, Christmas tree cinnamon rolls, and strawberry Santas. Let everyone help out with cooking breakfast (and cleaning up after)!
3 Hunt For Proof of Santa Claus
Get up early and plant Santa Claus clues outside like a lost sleigh bell on the ground and pieces of the carrots the kids left out for the reindeer. If you’re lucky enough to have fresh snow, make sleigh tracks or hoove prints on the ground. Or, make Santa’s boot prints with this magic snow and stencil kit.
Send the kids outside and let them hunt around to find the evidence that Santa and his reindeer really came last night.
4. Have A Lazy Day
Be completely lazy this Christmas!
Stay in your pajamas all day, lounge around the house, and enjoy doing not much of anything.
5. Christmas Movie Marathon
This is hardly a unique idea but I had to include it on this list of things to do on Christmas Day at home because Christmas movies are my jam. And I refuse to watch them at any other time of year besides October to December.
So, if you’re like me, Christmas Day is the LAST DAY to binge on Christmas movie awesomeness before it’s too late and you have to wait for next year.
6. Build Gingerbread Houses
Have a gingerbread house-building competition. Every family member gets their own supplies or you can divide into teams. Then, see who can build the fastest, craziest, or biggest gingerbread house.
7. Create A Hot Chocolate Station
Set up a hot cocoa bar in your kitchen. Everyone can warm up with a cup of hot chocolate or cocoa and add festive toppings to their drink. Include things like marshmallows (of course), crushed candy canes, caramel sauce, chocolate chips, and whipped cream.
(Bailey’s Irish Cream or Kahlua are also fun additions for the adults in the family).
8. Have A Christmas Tea Party
This is a cute idea for families with little girls or anyone who wants to get a little fancy on Christmas Day.
Dress up (or just wear your PJs if you’re sticking with #4) and have a tea party. Serve real tea or juice in teacups and nibble on Christmas cookies.
9. Make Christmas Crafts
If you’re not all Christmas crafted out by now, make a fun project on Christmas Day. Handprint crafts are always a great idea. Or, cut out paper snowflakes to hang around the house for a homemade decoration that can last all winter.
10. Declutter The Kids’ Toys
When is a better time to go through all your kids’ old toys and figure out which ones to keep and which ones to donate? After opening all their new gifts, they’ll hopefully be in a generous mood and willing to part with many of their old toys to make way for the new ones.
11. Reminisce With Each Other
Christmas always makes me feel nostalgic. Watch old home videos or look through photos from years ago while you’re spending Christmas Day at home this year.
12. Play Your Favorite Board Games
Some people love board games (me) and some people hate them (my husband).
If you live with a majority of game lovers, play some of your favorite board games this Christmas.
13. Read Christmas Books Out Loud
I love reading Christmas stories with my kids. Have everyone pick their favorite Christmas book and take turns reading them out loud to each other. This is a great activity for beginner readers or older kids who might not want to do much reading over the holiday break.
14. Have A Christmas Scavenger Hunt
Make up your own Christmas-themed scavenger hunt and send everyone off to search for the items on the list.
Alternatively, buy a Christmas scavenger hunt game. This one is for ages 6 and up.
15. Build A Fort
Make a cozy fort in your living room. Everyone can hang out, eat snacks, read books, and play games. Kids will love for mom and dad to join in on the fun.
16. Play Christmas Bingo
Even little kids can play this Christmas bingo game.
Buy a bunch of scratch tickets beforehand and make bingo even more fun by giving them out as prizes to the winners.
17. Do A Huge Puzzle
Get a custom jigsaw puzzle of your family and put it together on Christmas Day.
18. Christmas Murder Mystery Game
Play a Christmas-themed murder mystery game. Ideal for families with teenagers and older kids (13+). This is a fun way to keep everyone entertained and to spend time together on Christmas Day at home.
19. Play Charades
This idea was taken right out of my all-time favorite Christmas movie: The Family Stone. The family in the movie plays charades with some uncomfortable moments but your family charade game can be all about having fun.
If you want to make things easy, purchase a board game version. This holiday-themed Charades game is marketed towards adults and kids aged 7 and up.
20. Video Chat With Extended Family
The past two years have been all about virtual get-togethers.
While most of us are probably sick of Microsoft Teams meetings and Zoom office parties, it’s still a great way to connect with long-distance family members during the holidays.
21. Write New Year’s Cards To Family And Friends
I love getting Christmas cards in the mail, but when Christmas is over, it’s back to just bills and junk mail.
Send an after-Christmas greeting to family and friends to wish them a happy new year. Write personalized messages to everyone on your list and seal them with hopes of a great 2022.
22. Make your New Year’s Resolutions
Christmas Day is a great time to reflect on the past year and think about the future. Get ahead of the game and write down your New Year’s Resolutions on Christmas Day. You’ll be ready to start working on your resolutions as soon as the ball drops on New Year’s Eve.
23. Christmas Song Karaoke
My kids love to make a stage out of our Nugget and sing along to the Moana soundtrack. I’m not going to lie – I’ve been known to belt out a few lines along with them.
Set up your own stage and have everyone join in singing Christmas songs. YouTube has tons of Christmas songs with lyrics to sing along to. It’s the stay-at-home version of Christmas caroling.
24. Look At Christmas Lights in The Neighborhood
If you haven’t already traveled around this season looking at holiday lights, do it on Christmas night. Bundle up and take a walk around the neighborhood. Or drive around, counting the lights and pointing out the best houses.
25. Sleep Under The Christmas Tree
Make your Christmas Day at home last a little longer by having a sleepover next to the Christmas tree on Christmas night. Get out your sleeping bags or have everyone sleep in a homemade fort (see #15).
Final Thoughts On Things To Do On Christmas Day At Home
If you’re spending Christmas Day at home this year, there are still many ways to make it a fun and festive time.
Traveling for the holiday can be stressful, especially if you have young kids or you have to visit multiple places in one day. A lot of people may also choose to stay home this Christmas to avoid large gatherings.
Whatever your reasons, there’s nothing wrong with planning some Christmas Day activities to do at home this year. Truthfully, it may even be the best Christmas ever!