Essential Christmas Shopping Guide

*This post contains gifted items and affiliate links, all words are my own.

These are the little things that Christmas just wouldn’t be the same without, from mince pies to family games. Whether you’re celebrating with extended family and friends this year (COVID permitting), or having the day with your tribe, here are the best bits that make Christmas great.

Eco-friendly Wrapping Paper, Crackers, Gift Tags etc – The Little Green Paper Shop

It’s seriously alarming that so much gift wrapping ends up in our bins each Christmas because it’s not recyclable or biodegradable. The husband and wife team at The Little Green Paper Shop have set out to change this by creating Christmas Cards, DIY cracker kits, gift tags, gift wrap, and a whole bunch of other eco-friendly stationery. They use tree-free papers to offer an environmentally friendly alternative to traditional stationary and offer a very exciting range of in house printed papers, including plantable seed paper, reindeer poo paper, elephant poo paper, and sugarcane paper. 

What I love most about this female owned UK business is the dedication to cutting waste. The plantable seed paper is infused with wildflower seeds and can be planted after use, creating zero waste. The envelope is recycled and even the cello is biodegradable. If you’re searching for eco-friendly alternatives to Christmas stationery this year (and every year after), it’s definitely worth checking out The Little Green Paper Shop. 

Mince Pies – OGGS®

Mince pies, you either love them or hate them! I’m a huge fan of them and when I discovered these vegan mince pies from OGGS®, I was skeptical. I’m not a vegan myself, but I thought I’d give them a go and see if they could hold their own against normal, non-vegan pies. I’ve got to say that if you’re hosting Christmas for mince pie lovers, the OGGS® Luxury Handmade Mince Pies are what you want! The pastry is crumbly and the pies are filled generously, making them delicious no matter if you’re a vegan or not. The pack of 4 mince pies is available to buy online, or you can pick up a pack in your local Sainsbury’s.

Coaster Games – The Dark Imp

Is Christmas really complete without some traditional board games? A good old fashioned game or two is tradition in this house and I know that so many other households hold this notion dear too. These incredibly cool Coaster Games from The Dark Imp are great stocking fillers or tableware for Christmas dinner. Each coaster has a game printed on one side and the rules on the other; all you need is a piece of paper and your players! The Dark Imp creates lots of games that the whole family can play together, but these coaster games are suitable for players aged 8+.

The Christmas Tree

So many households are putting their Christmas trees up early this year in the hopes that a boost of Christmas magic will brighten up 2020. Though it seems that real trees are more environmentally friendly in terms of carbon footprints, artificial trees certainly have the upper hand when it comes to longevity. Christmas trees are no longer gappy, straggly shrubs, but full blown realistic beauties that look as good as the real thing. It’s advised that if you have an artificial tree, you keep using it for as long as you possibly can, before looking into more eco-friendly options. 

I am personally a fan of natural Christmas tree decorations and love anything wooden, made from burlap or handsewn. I have a collection of gorgeous personalised ornaments from Etsy and a handful of cute decorations from Amazon that I love! 

Christmas Jumpers and PJs.

I love a good family Christmas jumper picture! This year I’m really keen to get us all matching Christmas jumpers, as well as matching Christmas PJs. This will be the first year we’ve done the matching clothes as a family and I can’t wait for the pictures. 

Elf On The Shelf

Another Christmas tradition that the kids love is Elf On The Shelf! My other half actually told me that he has a notepad document on his phone that he uses to list EOTS ideas as they come to him, which I thought was really sweet. I haven’t shared any of our ideas before, but a few favourites have been: 

  • Elve’s putting the kids pants on the Christmas tree! (this was HILARIOUS)
  • An efly disco.
  • Snowball fights using white pom poms.
  • Elf snow angels using flour.
  • A tea party with all the cuddly toys. 

There are so many accessories you can get to help create fun Elf On The Shelf creations too.

Rachael is a 31 year old mum to 10 year old Luke and 5 year old Oscar. She lives in England and writes about family life, crafts, recipes, parenting wins(and fails), as well as travel, days out, fashion and living the frugal lifestyle.

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