Activity Ideas for the Holidays
The holiday season can feel a bit easier to navigate when the family joins together to continue to remember loved ones. The shared time together can be both healing and meaningful.
Each family member fills a clear glass ball with different colored ribbons; each representing a memory of their loved one. As you fill the ornament, talk and share the collective memories.
Decorate hurricane vases or simple mason jars with markers made for glass, foam letters, stickers or other decorative items. Perhaps use colored tissue paper, photographs of your loved one or copies of a special newspaper article or award that was special to your person. Cover in Modge-Podge. Light a candle or use a battery-operated candle for younger kids, to light the memories of your person.
Many holiday memories are focused around the dinner table. These questions can be used as conversation starters to remember your loved one:
What is your favorite memory of your loved one?
What is a funny memory of them?
What was their favorite holiday food?
What special touch did they add to the holiday?
What could they do better than anyone else?
If you could say something to them, what would you say?
If they were here, what would be different?
What do you wish they knew about you today?
What will you always remember about them?
Who in the family has a similar personality to them?
What was the best time you ever had with them?
What was their favorite holiday or holiday tradition?
What special vacations do you remember about them?
What special story can you share about them?
What is your favorite part of the holiday season?
What will be the most difficult thing you will have to do during the holidays without your loved one?
What can you do to feel close to your loved one this holiday season?
Discuss a holiday tradition that you want your family to continue.
Place a collection of photos of your loved one in a basket. Gather family members and take turns sharing photos and telling stories about your loved one. It can be fun to hear different people’s viewpoints of memories all within the same family.
Dedication Corner or Remembrance Item
Place a few commemorative items on display in remembrance of your loved one. Examples include a stocking hung with their name, a memory ornament for the tree, a dedication corner with a few special personal items, a candle in memory of them in addition to the Hanukkah candles, an empty chair or place setting in their honor at the dinner table, or a displayed picture of them at the table or in a prominent place that everyone can easily see and remember.
Make a Collective Family Scrapbook of Memories
Perhaps have each family member make their own blank booklet or everyone creates their own individual memory page that can be assembled all together. Brainstorm as a family what you would like included in the book(s).
If gift giving is a part of your holiday celebration, before the gifts are exchanged, have each family member talk about a special gift that their loved one has given to them.
Place a notebook, journal, or scrapbook in a place that is accessible to all family members through the holiday season. Invite family members to write, draw, paste items, recall thoughts and memories about your loved one. Choose a special time to share the book with each other.
• CBEM Changemaker
• Charity Navigator
Individual & Family Grief Counseling
Grief Support Resources
3847 Skippack Pike
P.O. Box 1299
Skippack, PA 19474