We all know that Christmas can be an expensive time of year with pressure from all angles to spend and splurge. Although there’s a big focus on gift giving, it’s important to remember that the magic of this season for little ones can be found in many places for free.
Writing a letter to Santa
The second half of a child’s year is usually spent doing their best to behave in order to end up on the ‘nice list’. It’s a known fact that parents have Father Christmas on speed dial, how else does he know when you’ve been naughty or nice?! Well now, the little ones have an opportunity to cut out the middle man and go straight to the man himself with their wish lists and declarations of good behaviour. The good elves over at the Royal Mail have fashioned a process whereby children can send their letters to Santa’s Grotto and they’ll receive a response. Simply address their letter to the address below. As we all know Father Christmas is a very busy man this time of year, so it’s worth explaining to any children sending a letter that he will do his best to reply to as many people as possible.
Top tip: Include your address with the letter to ensure a response finds its way back to the lucky one on the nice list!
Christmas markets may be a no-go this year, but there is still festive spirit to be found. We’ve all seen them, the houses draped in lights, an inflatable Santa waving to the other unlit houses on the street with a twinkly reindeer at his side. They’re not often advertised, but rumours of dressed up houses seem to spread like wildfire. So, wrap up warm and head out with your nearest and dearest on a Christmas lights treasure hunt!
You can walk or drive, you just need to keep your eyes peeled! You could even take it one step further and draw up Christmas lights bingo! Can you find:
- A garden tree covered in lights
- Inflatable characters
- A snow machine
- Christmas music playing
- (One for the grown ups) The one with the extra expensive electricity bill this month
Christmas Movie Night
We firmly believe that watching your most loved Christmas films will hit you right in the festive feels. We’ve all got our favourites, from the classics to new releases, and all those in-between films that aren’t really Christmas films, but must be watched around this time of year regardless. We’re looking at you Die Hard. Prepare the snacks, warm the hot chocolate and jump into your Christmas jammies, it’s time to attend your very own sitting room cinema. If you’re spoilt for choice, it needn’t be a one off. You can make it a weekly event on the run up to the big day, admission is free after all! Here are a few of team OpenMoney’s family friendly recommendations:
- Elf (2003)
- Santa Clause (1994)
- Home Alone & Home Alone 2 (1990 & 1992)
- Arthur Christmas (2011)
- Miracle on 34th Street (1994)
- How the Grinch Stole Christmas (2000)
However you choose to celebrate, remember that despite what all the ads tell you, the excitement from Christmas needn’t come from material goods, and often it’s the memories that people carry with them! Let us know if you put any of our ideas to good use over on our Instagram or Twitter!