Yes, that’s right – I’m blogging about virtual holiday party ideas. Tis the season, and tis certainly the year!
These ideas are particularly meant for hosting on your own, without added costs or hiring for help. But you know it’s going to be utter mayhem if you simply ask 20+ family members to dial in and start talking over each other without a little “guidance” to help steer the course…
Maybe we’re all growing weary of video chats at this point – with colleagues, with book club, catching up with family and friends. In the first few weeks of the pandemic, it seemed a different group wanted to meet up every night of the week – and then I panicked when each group started suggesting we do it weekly! But alas, here we are between Thanksgiving and Christmas, and we’re all looking for ways to connect and celebrate old traditions in this weird new way.
I’m no pro, but I’ve got a couple of gatherings in the works this year, and I wanted to share these ideas with you. Just a few little teasers to inspire you to get started on your own:
- Christmas cookies for all! Plan ahead that everyone will bake or buy their favorite holiday cookie(s) and eat them together on the call. Maybe go around the room and share a story about what makes it your favorite.
- Recipe swap, Secret Santa style. Share favorite family recipes in advance, so you don’t have to miss Aunt Myrtle’s green bean casserole, OR draw names and surprise your recipient with a recipe in the mail. Everyone makes their food(s) in time to sit down on the call together and enjoy!
- Charity-inspired swap. Invite everyone to donate to the charity of their choice and come to the call prepared to share more about it and their reasons for supporting. Merge this with the ol’ family swap concept and donate to the cause you feel would bring a smile to your recipient’s face!
- Virtual background deluxe. Spark a theme and even a contest! Ask everyone to change their virtual background to a favorite holiday memory, or even a past holiday blunder that feels like it could have taken place in 2020. Or pick goofy backdrops, movie backdrops, wrapping paper backdrops and vote for the winner (what’s the prize?)!
- Crafty collaboration. This may or may not resonate with how your family rolls – but heck, if it turns into a glitter fight then you have only yourself to blame (and clean up after). Find a very simple craft that you can all make together while on video. Literally google “very simple holiday craft” and you’ll find dozens of ideas for ornaments, wall hangings, toilet paper reindeer and more!
Pro tip, we used Elfster.com for a free and easy tool to pick names for our family swap. You can even set rules, such as not being able to pick your own spouse for gift-giving.
I hope you enjoy! Come back and tell me what you and your loved ones do to celebrate and connect this year!