holiday cookies and festive holiday play

25 Holiday Play Ideas To Make The Season More Fun

‘Tis the season to add more fun into your schedule. The holiday season is often also a busy season with lots of work deadlines before (hopefully) taking some time off to enjoy and spend time with your family.

Ever since we created our podcast, Playground To Purpose, my childhood bestie and I have been on a quest to add more play to our lifestyle. And the holiday season is the perfect time to add some spirited play to your life.

Use this list as inspiration to have some holiday play this season!

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1. Find the best holiday drink in your city

Most of us love a good Starbucks holiday drink, but your local coffee shop also has holiday specials! Find one with the most fun flavors. Or, if you’re not a coffee or beverage kind of person, try to find the best holiday dessert!

2. Create a themed cocktail

Speaking of drinks, why not create a fun and festive cocktail? You could even take it to the next level. I’ve seen some fun drink recipe ideas on TikTok. Or, if you don’t drink, make it a mocktail!

3. Go to a candle shop to smell all the festive scents

Bring on all the firewood, gingerbread & mulled wine candles.

4. Host a themed party

There are so many themes you could do! I’ve seen a trend of parties where you bring holiday drinks. You can also do a classic “ugly sweater party” or have everyone wear funky Christmas socks.

5. Do a themed gift exchange

You could do a silly theme like, only give gifts that start with the letter E. Or, only green gifts under $20. Giving people fun guidelines to work with allows people to get more creative, and feel like they’re on a bit of a scavenger hunt.

6. Ring the bell for The Salvation Army

Ringing the bell for The Salvation Army’s Red Kettle campaign is super fun to do with your besties, while actually doing some good! Your group can help raise money to help homelessness, poverty, and help fund a ton of programs that do good. If you can’t physically go, you could also virtually be a bell ringer too!

7. Read winter-themed books

You could go for one of these romance holiday books, which I feel like is the new holiday movie.

8. Do a ‘Santa Claws’ party

Playground To Purpose co-host Nina is doing a virtual gift exchange of claw clips for the holiday season. Such a clever idea to give gifts you’ll actually use!

9. Find fun holiday socks

Target always has good holiday socks! Etsy is also a great option for cozy socks.

10. Buy an advent calendar

They have one for everything these days! Whether it’s socks or makeup, you can find one that isn’t just chocolates! Or, you could even gift someone with a fun surprise advent calendar! Who wouldn’t love to open a new surprise treat every day?

11. Create a signature dish

Nothing says adulting like having your own signature dish you bring to parties! I’m still working on mine, but I feel like this feels like a fun project this year.

12. Wrap up the year with a party to celebrate your friends

Success showers are the cutest way to celebrate your besties who did big things this year!

13. Watch & keep track of your holiday movies

My spreadsheet tracker includes what my family and I rated the movie, where we can watch it, and keeps track of movies we want to watch this year!

14. Donate to a toy drive

I also love the “angel tree” donations where you can give someone something on their Christmas list. You can find those at a lot of Starbucks locations.

15. Find an ornament to represent your year

This is such a cute annual gift to give people in your life too, so they can always look forward to their ornament they get from you!

16. Get a holiday-themed mani/pedi

You can go for a typical red, green or blue for winter vibes, or go for some fun mani art!

17. Personalize your gift wrapping

Get some brown paper, or reuse paper bags, and get holiday stamps to make some cute DIY gift wrapping!

18. Bake a holiday treat inspired by your favorite movie

This article from The Food Network has a fun list to choose from!

19. Listen to holiday music in a new genre

There are holiday mixes for any genre, like R&B. And this country holiday playlist is a vibe.

20. Play a holiday game

Here’s a list of hilarious holiday games you can play from Play Party Plan.

21. Tipsy holiday caroling

Or skip the tipsy part, but holiday caroling is definitely a playful activity to try this year!

22. Go ice skating

Or skiing! Any kind of outdoor winter activity to get you through the cold weather is a must!

23. Decorate your work desk

Make sure your workspace still allows for holiday productivity and isn’t too distracting, but have fun with making your office space a little more festive!

24. Do a Christmas lights scavenger hunt

I made a new family tradition last year to do a little Christmas lights scavenger hunt from lists I find on Pinterest. It’s a fun way to make driving around the neighborhoods to check out lights even more fun!

25. Create a winter life theme

Having a quarterly theme is my new personality trait. This year, I chose to do “cozy while crushing it” which basically means adding extra comfort to my life while still making things happen. Examples of this: doing pilates in my pajamas, wearing all the cute matching sets & extra comfy clothes while ending the year with a bang. Swipe below for my co-host’s theme!