First and foremost, all of us here at Redbox hope you had a safe, wonderful and restorative Thanksgiving — and successfully avoided all of the travel snafus and bad weather that affected so much of the country.
Now that Turkey Day is over, it’s time to look forward to the holiday bonanza that is December. I don’t know about your family, but at my house we start pulling out our decorations before the Thanksgiving leftovers are even put in the fridge. If you also enjoy getting into the spirit of the season, why not make an occasion out of it? Maybe you want to keep it low-key with just your immediate family or a few friends, or perhaps you want to throw an all-out bash — either way, you don’t need much to set the scene and the mood for a most excellent holiday decorating party.
Here are the essentials:
Decorations: Duh, right? But seriously, there’s a big decision to be made here, depending on who’ll be helping you with your decorating. You can either trust everyone with your usual adornments — which might include family heirlooms or sentimental favorites — or you can pick up some other festive options to use. Everywhere you look these days, there are budget-friendly options for strings of lights, fun or silly tchotchkes to set out, and every other possible kind decoration you could think of to hang.
Another decision you’ll have to make is whether or not you want to decorate in advance for the party itself. That might sound a little odd, but I find that decking out one room you might not normally touch and using that as your home base for everyone to pick and choose what they’re going to work with helps add a little extra verve to the occasion.
Snacks and Drinks: You’ve got your traditional eggnog, candy canes, yule logs, sticky toffee pudding and sugar cookies that are always good standbys. And one quick look at Pinterest will give you more ideas than you could ever hope to recreate. But some of my favorites that I’ve mentioned before on this site are blue gelatin “snow cubes,” marshmallow snowmen and “Grinch kebobs” (a grape with a banana slice, strawberry tip and marshmallow on top for a Santa hat, all on a toothpick).
Background entertainment: While you’re trimming your tree and decking your halls, you simply must have some holiday tunes or movies on in the background to establish the mood. Our tried-and-true go-to soundtracks include John Denver & The Muppets: A Christmas Together, The 4 Seasons’ Christmas Album and Holiday Sing-Along with Mitch Miller. As for movies, there are many excellent ones to choose from, but here are 10 classics currently at the Box or Redbox On Demand that need no further introduction:
- Planes, Trains and Automobiles
- Almost Christmas
- A Bad Mom’s Christmas
- A Very Harold & Kumar Christmas
- National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation
- Tyler Perry’s A Madea Christmas
- Home Alone
- This Christmas
- A Christmas Story
Here’s to a festive rest of 2019!