2020 may not be your typical Christmas, but there are still plenty of ways you can make it special for the little people in your life, full of magic and wonder. In fact, the limits we face could give rise to real creativity and a Christmas unlike any other. You can also make this Christmas extra special by making it a little greener, helping to protect the planet and future for your children and for people all over the world. Here are a few ideas to get you started.

An image of a family doing crafts

1 Create a magical atmosphere minus the plastic

Want Christmas to feel as festive and sparkling as possible? You needn’t invest in yet more plastic baubles and throwaway tinsel. These days, there are so many great ideas out there for recycled and upcycled DIY decorations –these simple paper hearts are as lovely as anything shop-bought. You could also ramp up the eco festive factor with recycled paper chains – this easy National Trust guide shows how versatile and pretty they can be. Or if you’d prefer not to DIY, go for new-but-recycled decorations – this beautiful bee garland is a great way to weave a little wildlife into the proceedings.

Image of a family watching a film

2 Put on your own Christmas pantomime

Heading to a Christmas show could be tricky for some this year, but that needn’t stop the fun. Create your own make shift mini theatre at home and make the stars of the show upcycle style –here’s how to make a sock puppet dog for starters. Then just let your kids’ imaginations do the rest. You’ll create some magical memories and do the planet a favour by giving old socks a new lease of life rather than binning them. You could also make theatre tickets using old Christmas cards and serve up ethical chocolate treats in the interval.

Image featuring a selection of Christmas jumpers

3 Create keep-able Christmas jumpers

Yes, you could buy yet another set of matching festive pullovers…but why fuel throwaway fashion when you can create originals the kids will treasure using stuff you’ve already got? This clever guide to making a Christmas jumper from an old one requires zero sewing and is adaptable for all kinds of designs, so you can make something really personalised. The Oxfam Online Shop has lots of preloved jumpers and plenty of fabrics if you need them. Lack the time or inclination for craft? Keep an eye out for children’s Christmas jumpers on the Oxfam Online Shop too – and there are always plenty of woollies for grown-ups too.

Image of a father and daughter cooking together

4 Make space for some one-to-one time

A huge benefit of spending more time at home together is that you have, well, more time together. Make the most of it with some quality one-to-one time with the kids. Youngest love story time? Set up an extra-long reading stint with a few treats and their favourite tales – or surprise them with some ‘new’ stories. Pint-sized Bake Off fan in the family? Cooking together is always fun and our online cookery book section has all the inspiration you need. Or why not organise something outdoors? A festive picnic can be magical, even if it’s just in the garden, complete with snuggly blankets and warming hot chocolate. Older children might even enjoy turning back the clock with a brilliant retro board game.

Image of Archie the goat peaking over some wrapping paper

5 Greenify the four-gift rule

When it comes to choosing gifts for children, the ‘want, need, wear, read’ approach to shopping is a handy starting point if you want to buy truly useful gifts and reduce waste. Whether you buy from just one category or more, go a step further eco-wise by ensuring gifts are a bit greener too. You could buy second-hand – Oxfam Online Shop has thousands of options for the ‘wear’ gift including snuggly knitwear, coats and party dresses. Likewise the ‘read’ category – check out the children’s book section for stories by the likes of Jane Donaldson, David Walliams and Cressida Cowell. Given the challenges the world continues to face, you could also add a fifth ‘present for another’ category, with a life-changing charity gift such as A Super Goat from the Oxfam Unwrapped range.

Want some green gift ideas for the grown-ups in your life too? Check out our Ethical Christmas Gift guide to get inspiration for everyone on your shopping list!
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