Keep-it-Safe for the Holidays
Keep-it-Safe is just a Good Idea.
The holiday season is upon us once again, and so is the flu and the ongoing COVID season. Although most people have been diligent at getting flu and COVID vaccines, these illnesses are still present. Unfortunately, the days of carefree social interaction are a part of our past now. The holiday season, for many, still means vacationing and traveling to favorite places. With this in mind, a keep-it-safe holiday vacation is a good idea. Here is a list of fun holiday activities that are both festive and out of the public mainstream.
See the Lights
Bundle the kids into the car and take a drive around your neighborhood to look at the holiday lights. If you’d like to be truly impressed, you can even check out some of Colorado's amazing winter light displays. The Denver Botanic Garden's display will be from November 18th through Jan 7th. This is always a dazzling, ever-changing outdoor blossoming display of light and color. It’s outdoors, and capacity is limited for safety; you could also drive through Christmas in Color at WaterWorld in Denver, where you’ll find millions of synchronized light displays set to music you can play right through your car radio as you drive through the brightly lit pathways. Another amazing light display includes the Cheyenne Mountain Zoo’s annual Electric Safari, where you’ll find lights shaped like some of the zoo’s most exotic residents and the Mile High Tree in downtown Denver. But don’t stop there—there are small towns throughout the state that go wild for the holidays, and there’s nothing quite like seeing your hometown lit up in a new light this time of year.
One fantastic way to see the lights in an interactive, completely unique way is to visit the Dillon Ice Castles. Each year, the Ice Castles are built using hundreds of thousands of hand-placed icicles to create rooms, tunnels, and slides for guests to wander through and play on. It’s a fantastic experience during the day, but the real magic happens when the sun goes down, and the castles are lit from within, with an eerily beautiful glow of lights. This outdoor, open-air experience is a fun, keep-it-safe, and incredibly beautiful journey. So grab some tickets for you and your household if you’re looking for something that will truly wow you over the holidays.
Baking Holiday Treats
What better way to prepare for Santa’s arrival than by making him his own batch of cookies? Baking with your household can be a fun bonding experience, and if you have some supplies for decorating those cookies, it can also be a great way to express creativity. Make some cookies—and let’s face it, probably a mess, too—for a sweet treat and a fun time this holiday season.
Sledding, Tubing, and Playing Outside
In case you missed it, this is Colorado, and one thing we’ve got plenty of are hills. This time of year, they’re covered in snow, which means they’re a prime target for some epic sledding. Just as you might have imagined, in Colorado, we take our sledding and tubing seriously! Bundle up and get ready for some big time fun. Whether you go to a designated sledding hill like the Frisco Tubing Hill, High Country Tubing Park in Pagosa Springs, or Sledding Hill at Howelson Hill in Steamboat Springs, or you find your own in your neighborhood park, sledding and tubing are one of the most exhilarating ways to spend a day, no matter how old you are, while you keep-it-safe.
Take some time to play in the snow this holiday season, whether you’re racing down that hill or holding a snowman-building competition in your backyard. Throw a snowball at a loved one, and make snow angels and build igloos until you’re red in the face with laughter and full of new memories that will last you a lifetime.
Perfecting Your Hot Cocoa Recipe
We’ve listed a lot of outdoor activities, and this time of year, that means you’ll most likely be facing some brisk temperatures, and probably more than a little bit of snow. So when you get home and finish removing all your layers of jackets and scarves, what better way to warm up than with a hot beverage?
Yeah, you could go for that tub of Swiss Miss at King Soopers, but if you’re feeling extra fancy, spend this holiday season creating the perfect cup of hot cocoa, whatever that means to you. Maybe you could use real chocolate, melted slowly on the stovetop in a pot of milk, or maybe you want to switch it up and use coconut milk or a non-dairy alternative with some high-quality dark chocolate for a vegan twist. You can make your own hot cocoa mix from cocoa powder and sugar to use all winter whenever you need a special treat. You could add some vanilla or peppermint extract (or peppermint schnapps!), make your own whipped cream, or add a dash of chile powder for a little extra kick. Whatever you do, make it your own, and if you live with your family or have roommates, turn it into an event. Believe us, none of you will regret it.
And if spending time in the kitchen isn’t your thing, you could always support a local cafe by sampling their hot cocoa this holiday season!
Kids Cozy Movie Night at Home or with Friends
Movie night with the people in your household or with some special friends can be a special holiday occasion. It’s all about setting that intention. Select a film, and get your living room set up for an epic night of movie-watching by creating a blanket fort, building a nest of pillows and cozy blankets, or setting up a projector screen on a wall or a hung sheet. Plan some snacks for the group, whether it’s a variety of flavored popcorn you all make together, a selection of candy, or an array of finger foods and appetizers to munch on. Gather everyone together and enjoy some time together, maybe with those Christmas lights twinkling in the background to set some mood lighting. Whatever you do, you’ll be doing it together, and that’s what counts.
Family Game Night
When shopping for your loved ones this year, consider putting some board games under the tree. Games and activities are a great way to bond with your family or roommates, and having a big family game night can be a fun tradition around the holidays that allow you all to slow down, put down those phones, and spend time with one another. Do you and your family love strategy games that make you think? Or are you more into party games that let you be silly and laugh together? There are board games out there that will help your kids improve their math skills or learn more about other cultures. You could even get into some tabletop RPG games like Dungeons & Dragons, which allows everyone to create their own characters and have adventures limited only by their imaginations—and the roll of the dice.
And a Happy New Year
With the beginning of winter upon us. Hopefully, these keep-it-safe holiday activities will help you stay happy and healthy for the new year. We all owe it to ourselves to enjoy the holidays this year and for many more. With a little bit of mindfulness, you can spread the joy of the holiday spirit and stay healthy too.