How to minimise stuff and maximise Christmas spirit

Christmas spirit is all about giving, but it isn’t all about the gifts.

Christmas spirit is really all about hygge (it’s ok, I’m Scandinavian, I am licensed to use that word 😉 ). And hygge is about coming together and enjoying all the things that get you through the cold and dark Nordic winter. Think roaring fires, good books, candlelight, homemade food, boardgames, gingerbread houses, hot chocolate, warm blankets and rosy cheeks.

The Nordic winter is dark and cold and wet, but also full of hygge and rosy cheeks.
The Nordic winter is dark and cold, but also full of hygge and rosy cheeks.

Christmas spirit, like hygge, is intangible; a state of mind, an atmosphere. Basically, it is all about the cheer.

With that in mind, why not listen to this cheerful Christmas playlist while perusing the minimalist gift guide I have put together below? Let us all try to focus on experiences and togetherness this year, so we can minimise stuff and maximise Christmas spirit.

Christmas is not as much about opening our presents as opening our hearts.

– Janice Maeditere


Christmas isn't about things, it's about doing things - together.
Christmas spirit isn’t about buying things, it’s about doing things – together.



For animal lovers:
A gift voucher for pet food, or a donation to the recipient’s favourite animal charity.

For book worms:
This list of where to find free eBooks, or better yet, a trip (or several!) to your local library together.

For the elderly:
A technology workshop – in person, of course – of their choice (how to use a PC, Mac, iPad, Kindle, podcasts, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, BBC iPlayer, ITV Player, All4, My5, Skype, Word, Excel… the list goes on!).

For film fans:
Cinema gift vouchers. Go together if you can! / Odeon / Vue / CineWorld / Picturehouse /
Alternatively, try an iTunes or Google Play gift card.

For foodies:
A meal out together – or, if you can cook, a meal in together.
If the recipient lives too far away, try a gift card from Restaurant Choice.

For garden enthusiasts:
A membership to the RHS or National Trust. Don’t forget to arrange a visit together!

For magazine readers:
A subscription to their favourite mag or, if they have a tablet, help them download Zinio and connect the app to their library card (here’s how you do it). Free magazines forever!

And finally, for those who have everything:
An Oxfam Unwrapped gift that benefits someone who has too little. You can’t go wrong with a goat!


(c) Lise Myhre
From Nemi: Those who are unsure of what ‘quality time’ means just need to spend a few minutes with a dog.


This list doesn’t cover every personality type or interest, but I hope it has inspired you to look for gifts that have more meaning than monetary value.

After all, it is the thought that counts.


Love, Neens xx

One comment Add yours
  1. I love this so much! I think hygge describes perfectly what I love the most about Christmas! I used to look forward to receiving presents but as I’m growing older I tend to not care as much about getting things. It’s more about the positivity that surrounds Christmas that makes everything special. Thank you for sharing, it was a very interesting read!


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