AAA #25

Hello there! It’s finally December, which means that the Christmas festivities have begun! From the lights bedecking Orchard to the shopping malls looping “Last Christmas”, everyone seems to be getting ready to celebrate! But if you’re not sure how to go about celebrating this year due to COVID, don’t fret – we discuss all things Christmas below. 

How should I celebrate Christmas? 

In spite of COVID measures, the Christmas spirit can be well and alive if you, your family and/or friends start by decorating your home with Christmas decorations! With the recent Phase 3 measures of permitted eight-person gatherings, this will serve as a good way to bond with your loved ones, and you can also increase the Christmas mood by playing Christmas music in the background. If you’re one to prefer celebrating Christmas with your family, it is also a good idea to watch some Christmas themed movies together!  A few of such movies that can be streamed on Netflix now include Klaus and Jingle Jangle. Of course, one’s not to forget the Christmas feast! You can always cook a scrumptious Christmas dinner to enjoy with your loved ones. 

To immerse yourself in the atmosphere of the festive season (even without leaving your home) calls for a trip to Gardens by the Bay’s Christmas Wonderland, which runs a physical or virtual walking tour called the Walk of Lights showcasing beautiful light decorations! This allows you to safely enjoy even the most crowded of events.

Another idea would be to have a Secret Santa with your friends! As it is the season of giving, it will be fun to exchange gifts with each other and spread the love. If you have a friend group bigger than eight, try mailing your presents to each other, and open them together on a Christmas Zoom call! This will serve as the perfect chance for a get together to catch up with your friends – and of course, Secret Santa can be done with your family too. 

What can I do if I don’t celebrate Christmas?

Hello there! I understand that it may be easy to feel left out during the holiday season when everyone seems to be getting excited for Christmas if you don’t celebrate it, but fret not – there are lots that you can do during the holidays! You may not share the religious side of Christmas, but you can still take this as a chance to spread some love and happiness to those around you. Better yet, you could take this chance to participate in various Christmas charity drives, like the Santa Run, or volunteer with various charity organisations to help those in need. After all, ‘tis the season of giving!

Other than spreading joy to your loved ones and the less fortunate, you could also go out to various Christmas events and have some fun the week of Christmas. Even if you don’t celebrate Christmas, you’ll still have tons of fun roaming around Singapore and seeing beautiful Christmas-themed sights with your friends and family. You could always hop over to the Central Business District, which always has elaborate Christmas decorations and lights festooning its streets at this time of the year. Just remember to keep a safe distance from fellow sightseers and shoppers, too!

Another Christmas activity that has been set up this year is The Capitol Kempinski. You certainly don’t need to celebrate Christmas in order to enjoy this. The Capitol Kempinski is a new dining experience set up outside CHIJMES just for Christmas, where you get to dine under the stars in bubble domes! It’s certainly a unique experience that will be incredibly fun to share with your family. If you’re not up for going out to a fancy dinner, you could always make a Christmas dinner with your family at home too – after all, food is food, and you needn’t be religious to enjoy cooking with your family!

If sightseeing and cooking isn’t really your thing, you could also head down to Snow City or any ice skating rink and experience a white Christmas right here in Singapore! No matter whether you choose to celebrate Christmas, you’ll probably still have loads of fun hanging out with your friends and family in the snow or on the ice. 

Lastly, do remember that it isn’t obligatory for you to do something special for Christmas just because many people around you are! For some of us, simply curling up on the couch at home is the best way to enjoy the holidays. Happy Holidays!

How should I spend Christmas if I’m alone? 

We understand that for some, it may be a little tough to spend this traditionally familial season alone. Hence, we’ve come up with some cozy things you can try to pass the time and enjoy yourself too. 

You can always snuggle up in bed and watch amazing Christmas movies! A heartwarming classic such as Tim Burton’s A Nightmare Before Christmas would be one of such great movies, or follow 8-yr-old Kevin in his attempts to keep his house protected from burglars in Home Alone. These are classic movies that may warm your heart and get you in the festive mood. 

Another form of entertainment is spending some quiet time on your own. Curl up in your favourite blanket and treat yourself to a warm cup of hot cocoa (or Milo), and grab a book to get enchanted by the different worlds, plots and cultures exposed to you. You can even make the experience more mesmerising and cozy by dimming the lights a little and turning on your lamp for a warm glow. Some well lit candles would help with the mood too! 

Lastly, you may still miss your family and friends during Christmas even after trying all of these, especially when COVID-19 is still going on and there are still many regulations to adhere to. However, anyone you  care about is always only a call or text message away. So, give them a ring, leave them a text and catch up with one another. Moreover, the activities mentioned above can also be done together virtually! You can stream various movies and series to watch together if you’re lonely. Play some online games such as Among Us too! You can also start a mini book club amongst your friends where you read a book over a week and discuss it together as well.

Hopefully our solutions have aided you in partaking in the festive cheer. Good luck!

What presents can I get my crush without being too obvious? 

Christmas is definitely considered a holiday of love and giving nowadays, so it’s understandable that you would like to express your feelings a bit more subtly, especially through presents! Depending on how close you are to the person that you are preparing a gift for, what counts as ‘too obvious’ may vary. However, we do have some recommendations on what to give to that ‘special someone’.

Of course, it is important to try and match the tastes of the person that you’re giving your present to. For example, if someone really likes anime, you could get them memorabilia. Or if the person likes writing or drawing, you could get them a notebook. By understanding their interests and preferences, it makes the present more personal. If you aren’t sure about the person’s interests, you can also look at their social media or ask mutual friends, in order to make sure that you give them something that they actually like (which might also help you to leave a bigger impression!).

Another good present that you could give to your crush could be a soft toy! People often give soft toys to others as presents – they show your appreciation and give your giftee something that’s more personal, while not making it seem overly close or obvious. Also, plushies often remind people of the person that gave it to them, so every time your crush sees that plushie, they’ll also be reminded of you :3

Of course, we mustn’t forget about personalised gifts that can be made through arts and crafts! If you have a bit of an artistic side, you could design anything, from a simple personalised card to a handmade present such as accessories. If your crush is a bit more practical, you can also try and make them more customised but useful things, such as decorating one of those blank pencil cases or making a keychain for them!

Overall, you should be aware of the level of closeness of your relationship with your crush, be it acquaintances or close friends, and give them something accordingly – for example, a simple piece of stationery would be appropriate for an acquaintance.  However, bear in mind the most important rule of gift-giving – the thought behind it. Best of luck!

Any last-minute Christmas gift ideas? 

‘Tis the season of giving! We all want to do our best in getting something good to give our friends and family. However, deciding on what to give may not always be easy, especially when we do not have much time left to think about what to get. Do not worry, for Aunt Agatha is here for you!

Firstly, for that one friend that loves (or needs) organisation in their life you could possibly get them planners, notebooks, pencil cases, etc. You could hop down to Typo, Tokyu Hands, and the like to pick up some aesthetic gifts for your friends! Also, notebooks and pencil cases are very practical necessities that everybody needs and these could be possible gifts for any friend!

For the fancy person in your life, you could possibly get them styled phone cases, earrings, bracelets, or even small bags based on what you know about their preferences. These would definitely elevate their style and certainly be well-received.  

Thirdly, the easiest thing to do would be to head down to a Decathlon store near you with sporty friends in mind. Since there would be different sections for different sports, it would be easy for you to find something relevant to them based on the sports they enjoy!

Alternatively, get your friends and family personalised care packages with food and other things you know they would like, such as scented candles that would lift their mood, soft toys of their favourite character or animal or a photo collage of all the best memories you have! In general, customising a gift can give a more personal touch and make it more meaningful, since it shows that you did think of them, even if you did get it last minute (e.g. giving someone who likes certain animals socks/notebooks with those animals on them). After all, it’s the thought that really counts!

These are just some possible gift ideas and you could always go online to search for more ideas! Even though you may be rushing to get something quickly, remember to put thought into what you are getting and try making it personalised – thoughtfulness and a personal touch mean more than any price tag could.

Hope this was useful to you! Wishing everyone a very Merry Christmas!

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