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Not-So-Home Alone: 9 Ways to Keep the Family Entertained This Holiday Season

So you made it through the summer of 2020 – give yourself a pat on the back. While fall is already flying by, we still have the holidays to get through, and with current social limitations in place, holiday entertainment with the family might look a little different this year.

But being stuck at home with the fam doesn’t have to be all bad. This year’s holiday season may come with added stress, but with a little creativity and holiday entertainment planning, you can make 2020 extra special. You may not be able to take the kids on the Polar Express train or stroll through your town’s Trail of Lights, but you can still create your own magic right at home.

No matter what your family traditions are, take this holiday season to find new ways to enjoy your time together. To help kickstart the process, we’ve put together some fun ideas on how to upgrade your family’s holiday time at home, along with some hand-selected pieces from Etsy, eBay, and Chairish.

Upgrade Movie Night

We all have our favorite holiday movies that we rewatch every year… “Miracle on 34th Street,” “A Christmas Story,” “It’s a Wonderful Life”… the list could go on. You may have watched these films on your TV, laptop, or entertainment console, but have you watched them on the big screen at home? Make the most of movie night with your very own projector. Purchase your own screen, hang up a sheet, or just point the projector at a blank wall. Then, throw some blankets and pillows on the floor and get cozy with the fam.

holiday entertainment family watching movie at home

Movie projectors available on eBay.

Get Things Poppin’

Speaking of movie nights – how will you make popcorn for the whole family? Do you really want to heat up individual packs in the microwave all night? We didn’t think so. This year, make the holidays extra festive with a classic, full-size popcorn machine. Let the unmistakable smell of buttery, freshly popped popcorn sweep through the house and announce to everyone that it’s movie time. Don’t forget the other snacks!

popcorn cart holiday entertainment

Paramount 16oz Commercial Popcorn Maker Machine, available on eBay.

Spread Warmth and Good Cheer

Whether you live in a place with cold winters or mild ones, a fire pit is always a sure way to bring people together. Bundle up, make some s’mores, play holiday tunes, and enjoy the brisk night air under the stars. Fire pits, a growing trend in the COVID era, are also great options when hosting smaller groups. Being able to keep people comfortable outside can double your entertaining space and allow for more social distancing when needed.

outdoor fire pit

PyroMania Shangri-La Fire Pit Table, $1199, available on Chairish.

Keep the Good Cheer Flowing

Sustain that holiday cheer with a custom home bar cabinet. Stock up on your favorite holiday spirits or Martinelli’s sparkling apple cider. Whatever you fancy, make it look classy. Mix in a little extra festivity with twinkling lights, a cup of hot cocoa, or fun holiday glasses. We especially like this cabinet that closes, making it easier to store when guests are gone.

deluxe home bar holiday entertainmentAntique Handcrafted Home Bar Cabinet by magusdesignsjaipur, $4078, available on Etsy.

The Grandkid Shuffle

With everyone in town, that usually means multiple generations and lots of grandkids. While the little ones are adorable, they can also take up a lot of space. Make the holiday kid-wrangling a little easier with a bench that the kiddos can sit on during meals or picture time. Need a few quiet moments before the next big activity? Park the bench in front of the TV. It’s okay – we all do it.

beige cane bench

Audley Cane Back Bench in Beige, $1999, available on Chairish.

Up the Ante

Did the holidays even happen if you didn’t have a family game night? Stir up a little healthy competition between generations and bring out the board games, playing cards, and poker sets. Up the stakes and place some bets… even if you’re just using candy canes. If you feel like upgrading from Monopoly or Scrabble, find something unique like this dartboard cabinet that will really get the party started.

Deluxe Dartboard Cabinet on etsy holiday entertainment

Deluxe Dartboard Cabinet by ClarkeshopBoutique, $523, available on Etsy.

Rocking Around…

Now that you have your favorite games and movies all setup, what about your favorite holiday album? Music deserves a spotlight too. Instead of playing from your Bluetooth speaker and dealing with the perpetual “low battery” noise, travel back in time and enjoy your favorite tunes the way they were meant to be heard – on vinyl. As everyone mingles, cooks, or relaxes together, let the warm sound of the record player drift through the house, making for an extra memorable time.

record player on wood standRecord players available on eBay. (Don’t forget the stand)

Next Level Photo Booth

It’s easy to set up streamers and make a DIY photo booth, but why not go all out and make your booth the most epic one on the block? Pack the family into an inflatable, life-size snow globe and get the best pictures your Facebook friends have ever seen. Extra points if everyone wears their ugly sweaters and reindeer ears.

inflatable snow globe holiday entertainment

Giant Snow Globe, $2500, available on eBay.

Light Up the Block

Can’t make it to the light show? Bring the light show to you (and the entire neighborhood). Nothing says “festive” like this 18-foot Frosty the Snowman in your front yard. We’re pretty sure people will be lining up around the block to see the spectacle.

inflatable frosty the snowman

Frosty The Snowman Giant 18 Ft Inflatable Light Show, $375, available on eBay.

Have you found the perfect fire pit or old-fashioned popcorn machine that needs to be shipped and delivered in time to bake cookies and watch “Home Alone” with the fam? uShip has you covered with professional transporters that specialize in shipping oversized items. Because this holiday season, your entertainment planning should be the only thing you need to worry about. Create your free listing to start getting quotes from carriers today.