The holidays are a time for mothers to show their loved ones how much they care for and appreciate them. While moms certainly share their affections with those who matter most to them year-round, they are prone to putting their feelings on full display during this special time of year.

One way to express those sentiments is, of course, giving gifts. But there are lots of other ways for moms to show friends and family how much they mean to them beyond material purchases.

Here are nine suggestions for low-cost (or no-cost!) Christmas activities for moms to enjoy with their families this holiday season.

1. Embark on an in-town adventure

As a mom, you probably think you know everything there is to know about the place you live, but we bet you don’t. Plan an adventure around town, either to one of your favorite spots or somewhere you’ve never been. From dining at a local restaurant to visiting a museum to partaking in seasonal attractions (like ice skating), venturing somewhere right in your own backyard can be a memorable experience.

Christmas activities for families with mother and daughter making a gingerbread house

2. Build a gingerbread house

Gathering with friends and family for activities that embrace Christmas traditions is a wonderful way to bond, and one of the best ways to do that is by building a gingerbread house. This activity is friendly for most ages, allows you to work alone or in groups, encourages creativity, and otherwise captures the spirit of the season.

3. Go to a holiday event

Many communities host holiday-themed events, such as plays, concerts, and fun runs. If your town is not planning any events, consider checking with local churches and organizations, as they often offer kid-friendly events during the holiday season. These can be a ton of fun for people of all ages, whether you are going out for a date night with your spouse or staying in for an evening of family bonding.

4. Christmas lights sightseeing

With joyful hearts and bright LEDs, houses around town will be dressing up in colorful lights and playful inflatable Christmas characters. For a surefire joyous occasion, gather some loved ones and close friends, pack into a car or two, and set out on a quest to find the most stunning Christmas light displays in the area.

5. Host a movie night

With so many holiday movies to choose from, hosting a themed movie night with the fam is a fantastic way to spread Christmas cheer and forge some fond memories. Whether you opt for a classic, such as “Miracle on 34th Street,” or a newer release (“Elf,” anyone?), you’re all sure to be filled with the holiday spirit when the closing credits roll. You can even complement the movie with themed treats and drinks.

Christmas activities for families with mom and kids decorating christmas cookies

6. Decorate Christmas cookies

This wholesome holiday tradition is perfect for families, friends, and couples. Whether you consider yourself an experienced baker or a novice (in which case, say hello to pre-packaged decorating kits), the fun is sure to fly. When you are done decorating, you and your kiddos get to enjoy the best part of this tradition: eating your creations.

7. Go caroling

One of the most wonderful things about the season is spreading cheer to others — and few Christmas activities for families are more ingrained in holiday tradition than sharing joy via song. So, gather a group of your closest companions (or join an existing merry band of songsters) and carol your heart out.

Flowers, Christmas . Photos by Mike Lawrence for Flowers

8. Decorate your home

Get down the string lights and tinsel from the attic, and get to work. Creating a festive environment will make your home feel Christmas-y and help lift everyone’s holiday spirits. If you haven’t already, make this an annual holiday tradition to enjoy with your loved ones.

9. Be charitable

Christmas is a time of giving, and few things bring moms greater satisfaction than showing their generosity to their loved ones — and having them share in the experience, too. Consider giving to a Christmas-specific charity drive, to make your contribution feel seasonally appropriate, or choose a charity you know does good year-round. You can even volunteer your time at a local charity event.


Hanna Marcus is the founder, head copywriter, and brand voice specialist behind the copywriting company Boundless Copy. Seven years as a copywriter, six years as a journalist in the newspaper industry, and a lifetime of being an extrovert taught her that all the best writing starts with sharing a good story. Sharing words that connect people and make them feel something remains her primary mission as a writer — no matter what she's writing about.

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