Thank you to Basic Invite for sponsoring this post.
Christmas need not come just once a year. This premise for celebrating the holidays during the blazing heat of summer has always been an easy one to buy into. Who doesn’t want to think about cooler weather, cozy gatherings with friends and family, delicious food, and exchanging gifts? And if you are reader of this blog, you also enjoy sending happy holiday cards, making gift tags, and designing creative packaging. All that said, as much as I love the holidays, I have never paid much attention to Christmas in July. I was often busy doing summer stuff and never slowed down long enough to plan a party.
But then a pandemic happened. And the holidays last year simply could not be celebrated as they had in the past. I missed it. But now, with vaccinations in place, people are starting to gather again. Why wait five months to make up for 2020? Throwing together a impromptu, belated holiday gathering this summer would give everyone a much needed lift, without the pressure or stress that often comes with the actual holidays. You can even keep it outside, if you have vulnerable or not-yet-vaccinated guests. Since no one expects anything during the summer, you don’t have to worry about about disappointing anyone, or finding the perfect gifts, or figuring out how to fit in too many parties. Just think of it as a reason to get everyone’s mind off the heat and enjoy what you missed last year.
How to Plan the Perfect Christmas in July Celebration
- Keep gifts simple (if you even give any). Gifts actually are not necessary at all, and the dog days of summer are not the time to go on extravagant shopping sprees. If you do decide to give gifts or favors, either do something edible such as a cookie mix, homemade jam, or chocolate, or go with a summer theme. Slushy mix, colorful beach bags, and barbecue accessories are all needed this time of year.
- Decorate, within reason. No need to haul everything out. Instead, string fairy lights around your porch or garden (if you don’t have fairy lights, give your regular Christmas tree lights a second showing.) If you have a small table tree, decorate that with shells, paper drink umbrellas, and flowers. If you don’t have a tree, a tomato cage turned upside down can be decorated and used as a table centerpiece. If your event is going to be outdoors, decorate a tree in your garden or even a rosemary plant or shrub.
- Designate a photographer. Since the family is going to be together, now is the perfect time to take your pictures for this year’s holiday cards. Pick whoever is the most skilled in your group, and do a fun photo session. Basic Invite has many fabulous options for cheap photo Christmas cards to browse through now or when fall comes around. I especially like the tropical vibe of this festive flamingo holiday card.
- Make food fun. Stay away from the heavy traditional dinner. Instead, think party food with a holiday theme. Try turkey tea sandwiches, frozen hot chocolate, watermelon cut into tree-shaped triangles, red and green snow cones, and cranberry coolers.
- Set up lawn games. It is summer after all. Put out a croquet set, plan a neighborhood scavenger hunt, or have a sand box set up for the kids. If your family is musical, sing a few Christmas songs. Sparklers are always fun and they can replace candles.
No matter how simple or elaborate your July 25 is, everyone is going to love just being together again. And even if you are not able to plan anything this year, don’t forget that you can do other things to recognize the occasion. Send a text message or, better yet, a card. A number of you are business owners and often come here looking for marketing ideas. While company Christmas cards and gifts often get lost in the shuffle during December, they are completely unexpected at this time of year. When Basic Invite approached me about featuring their cards, I was blown away by their options. The colors are almost unlimited, with instant online previews. Once you select a design, you can change the color of each element on the card. Basic Invite is also one of the few websites that allows customers to order a printed sample of the actual card before placing a final order. This allows you to see the paper quality and make sure everything is perfect.
My absolute favorite feature is that Basic Invite offers an addressing service that allows customers to share a link on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram to request their friends and family’s addresses. The addresses are then stored in the customer’s account and can be selected during the design process. Basic Invite offers recipient address printing at no cost on all card orders. Just wow. This is a huge time saver.
I hope you are inspired to do a little something extra this July, or to start planning now for the real deal in December. Better times are ahead of us. I am sure of it. x