Day 1: Enjoy a cup of peppermint hot chocolate.
Nothing says winter like a cup of comforting hot chocolate! ☕
Peppermint candies and chocolate go so well together — the flavor profile is rich, fresh, and yummy! I found this lovely peppermint hot chocolate recipe by Chrissie at The Busy Baker. It looks super quick and easy to put together. You can make this recipe for a simple day at home or a holiday party. It’d be the perfect way to say hello December! 🌲
Day 2: Send out handmade holiday cards to your loved ones.
Show your loved ones you care by sending them a personalized holiday card. You can write them a short little note or sweet message. Also, don’t forget to decorate the card with little details like stickers or doodles! 💌
Some of my favorite supplies:
Day 3: Stay hydrated and start a water log in your journal.
During winter, it’s important to stay hydrated. The air is dryer when it’s cold, so that can lead do dehydration. Also, you don’t sweat as often when it’s cold, which makes dehydration less noticeable. For this reason, think about starting a water log in your journal!
It’ll be so much easier to track your water intake this way. Here’s an example of what a water log looks like! 🌊
Day 4: Bake yummy sweet treats like snowman cookies.
On day #4 of the winter bucket list, bake cookies and share them with someone! On Pinterest, there are so many delicious and festive recipes to choose from. The other day, I found these adorable winter wonderland cookies — so fitting for a cold and snowy day. They’ll warm up your entire kitchen! 🏠🍪
Day 5: Decorate your place with twinkling lights and holiday colors.
Turn your place into a winter self care haven with some cozy holiday decor. You can always DIY your decor pieces — (I’m loving these mason jar snow globes! SO cute!) Also, look for affordable deals at your favorite store or online retailer.
Personally, I buy most of my home decor at Marshalls, Amazon, and Etsy because they have great prices and quality items. A few other store ideas are Kohls, Target, HomeGoods, and Ross! ⛄
A couple of my recent faves:
Day 6: Make a cute gingerbread house.
Omg, how cute is this gingerbread house from Sally’s Baking Addiction?! I’m not an experienced baker by any means, but I think this would be such a fun winter activity. You can even make one with your family, s/o, or friends and turn it into a holiday competition!
Yes y’all I’ve been watching a lot of baking shows on the Food Network these days! 🍭
Day 7: Invest in a few winter wellness must-haves.
Because of the cold weather, it isn’t easy to go outside as often. In Chicago, it’s already snowing and super chilly. If you’re inside for too long, you may feel sluggish or tired. Make sure you’re focusing on wellness and taking care of yourself. Check in with your body, stay hydrated, and create a fitness plan for snowy days.
Also, invest in a few wellness must-haves. For me, buying a humidifier was crucial this year.
The air gets pretty dry in our place and that affected me a lot. I always needed lotion and even got a couple of nosebleeds. That wasn’t exactly comfy, so a humidifier was a great purchase! We also added a few plants because they clean indoor air. 🌱
Top Wellness Finds:
Day 8: Create a whimsical eyeshadow look!
I’m thinking purple, gold, blue, red, green…or any color that gives you holiday vibes! Feel free to get creative with your makeup look. 💜
If you need more inspo, here are 33 Easy Party Makeup Looks to Try This Holiday Season!
Day 9: Take a festive photo (or polaroid) and post it on Instagram!
Today, snap a photo that represents the beauty of winter! It could be trees with snow, a cup of hot chocolate, or even your coziest OOTD. You can pin the photo on your wall, start a dream board, or post it on Instagram. Whatever makes you happiest! ✨
Day 10: Complete a random act of kindness.
Growing up, I lived with my grandparents. My grandpa had pretty bad arthritis, so our neighbors would help us shovel snow often. It was always very thoughtful and sweet. Looking back, it really made my family’s day. For Day #10 of the winter bucket list, do a random act of kindness. It can be as simple as volunteering or shoveling snow for an elderly neighbor.
For even more ideas, check out my recent post — 40 Random Acts of Kindness Ideas! ❄️
Day 11: Plan an outdoor activity.
Plan an outdoor activity like ice skating, sledding, or building a snow man! The last one is my personal fave! ☃️
Day 12: Go to a festive event, like a tree lighting.
Visit your town’s website and look out for local events. They may sponsor a tree lighting, show, or concert. If you’re local to Chicago or visiting, I recommend Christmas Around the World at the Museum of Science & Industry. It’s always a lot of fun and you learn about various cultures and traditions. Also, you can’t go wrong with shopping at the water tower! 🌃
Day 13: Drive around your neighborhood and look at the holiday decorations!
Y’all, this is a classic midwestern holiday go-to lol! But it’s so much fun! Last year, my mom, brother, Alejandro, and I drove around the neighborhood and looked out at all the lights. We were playing 93.9 (which is the holiday station for us in Chicago). All of the houses looked super pretty and festive! 🎄
Day 14: Have a cozy night in — pjs, sitcoms, and a holiday candle!
On day #14 of the winter bucket list, grab your PJs, turn on a hilarious sitcom, and light a candle. Literally the coziest self care routine ever! 💖
Cozy Night In Essentials:
Day 15: Donate blankets and food to an animal shelter.
Because animals deserve so much love and care! 💛
If you can, call up your local shelter and ask if they need any volunteers. Also, pick up a few goodies and necessities (blankets, food, toys, newspaper, etc.)
Here’s a list of 15 Things Your Rescue Shelter Needs!
Day 16: Make dinner with seasonal veggies.
Stock up on seasonal veggies this year. Vegetables that are in season can withstand the winter cold. They also give you the vitamins and minerals you need during this time of year. Good examples are squash, cabbage, kale, and Brussels sprouts. 🥕
Winter Recipe Ideas
- Shephard’s Pie — Chelsea’s Messy Apron
- Winter Squash Soup — Erren’s Kitchen
- Vegetable Beef Stew — Dinner Then Dessert
Day 17: Watch a cheesy holiday movie.
And oh — there so many to choose from. In fact, here’s a giant list of the best Christmas movies of all time. You’re welcome, y’all! 🎄
Day 18: Play a few nostalgic board games with your friends.
Host a game night at your place! 🎲
You can make popcorn, apple cider, and play classic board games.
Alejandro and I recently got his siblings into board games. They stayed over our place for the weekend and insisted we play Life! That was my favorite board game as a kid, so I was super happy! Now we’re thinking of hosting a family game night soon.
This is really such a chill self care idea for the winter season!
Classic Board Games
Day 19: Knit or crochet yourself a cozy scarf and mittens.
Keep yourself warm with a DIY scarf, hat, or mittens. If you’re a beginner like me, try out this fabulous tutorial by Ashleigh at Sewrella!
Day 20: Run a bath and listen to holiday music.
Sometimes, a nice hot bubblebath is so necessary. For day #19 of the winter bucket list, run a relaxing bath. Also, make a playlist of festive songs you can listen to after a long day. Some of my go-to holiday songs are Last Christmas by Wham, Winter Wonderland by Jewel, and All I Want for Christmas by Mariah Carey! 🎵
Day 21: See a holiday musical or show near you.
Check out what shows are playing near you. There are SO many amazing shows you can see right in your hometown! If you’re a bit busy or on a budget, you can also find a few classic shows on YouTube. Personally, I love The Nutcracker! Grab some popcorn and a cup of tea –now it’s a truly lovely evening! 🌟
Day 22: Rest your body and take a nap.
During the winter, you may feel a bit tired due to the lack of sunlight and shorter days. According to Sleep.org, 7-9 hours is a generally a healthy amount of sleep. A 20 minute midday nap also has quite a few health benefits! Ultimately, it’s best to stay in tune with your body and rest when you need to! 🌙
Day 23: Complete a page of a holiday coloring book.
Coloring is super relaxing and fitting for the colder seasons! It’s a nice way to decompress after a long day. Plus, there are so many festive coloring books for adults out there! I tend to buy my coloring books at Barnes and Noble or on Amazon. Look out for few coloring books and dedicate about 20 minutes to just sitting down and coloring. If possible, also turn off your phone and any electronics! 🎨
Top Holiday Coloring Books
Day 24: Create a self care kit for traveling.
During the holidays, you may be traveling a lot more than usual. Maybe you’re visiting family out of state or just on the road a lot. Either way, it’s crucial to take care of yourself while traveling. A good way to do this is by keeping a goodie bag (or box) of self care items. Maybe it’s a blanket, snacks, or a bottle of travel size shampoo.
This year, pack an self care travel kit that you can take with you on the go. For a full guide, check out my post — How to Make a Self Care Kit + 20 Items to Include!
Day 25: Get some fresh air.
For Day #25, go on a scenic hike or walk to a winter wonderland (or simply around your neighborhood)!
Day 26: Calm your mind with soft winter sounds.
There are a lot of calming wintery sounds to choose from as background noise. This Cozy Winter Ambience video is instantly relaxing! What’s dreamer than spending a night at a cabin while it’s snowing outside? ☁️
Day 27: Start a fun & meaningful project, like a scrapbook!
Collect pictures and special mementos from the year and start working on a scrapbook!
Day 28: Write down a list of goals for the New Year.
Spend 10-20 minutes jotting down a few of your biggest goals for the new year. If you’re feeling inspired, you can even make a bucket list! 🎉
Day 29: DIY winter themed skincare products — like body butter or shower scrub.
Since the air is quite dry, make skincare a priority as the weather gets colder. Moisturize, exfoliate, keep hand lotion at your desk, and don’t forget about sunscreen! Even though it’s not as sunny outside, you still need to protect your skin from harmful UV rays. Consider buying a moisturizer with SPF and make it a part of your morning routine.
You can also DIY some amazing skincare products for the perfect at-home spa day. My favorite right now is this amazing sugar cookie body butter. How cute and perfect for winter!
Day 30: Read a book as the snow falls outside — don’t forget a blanket!
For the last day of the winter bucket list challenge, cuddle up with a book you can’t put down. And of course… your comfiest blanket!
Cozy books for your winter reading list:
I hope you enjoyed this post, everyone. Have a happy, safe, and magical holiday season! x
What is on your winter bucket list? Also, what are you looking forward to the most this year about the holiday season?