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Simplify the Holidays

Want your holidays wrapped in more meaning—and less stuff?

Are you tired of the commercialization of your most cherished holiday celebrations? Do you want more of what matters—not just more stuff?
With our Simplify the Holidays campaign, New Dream is here to help you get started.

TIPS: 15 Tips for Commercial-Free, Fun-Filled Family Holidays

If you want to make this year’s holidays more meaningful, memorable, and rejuvenating for your family, these 15 tips will help you opt out of the commercial hype and create a truly special celebration for your kids. 

SoKind – the "alternative" gift registry

SoKind allows you to create fully customizable holiday wish lists focused less on "stuff" and more on family, fun, and friends. Or, create a GiveList—rather than requesting gifts, you can offer loved ones meaningful gifts that align with your values and skills!

GUIDE: Family Celebrations: A More Fun, Less Stuff Guide to Life's Joyful Events

Family Celebrations: A More Fun, Less Stuff Guide to Life's Joyful Events provides inspiration and practical tips for you to plan special celebrations that reduce waste and expense, emphasize meaning over material goods, and strengthen relationships. The guide includes a special section on the year-end holidays.

CATALOG: More Fun Less Stuff Gift Catalog – 100s of fun, low-cost, non- material gift ideas you can use today!

An alternative gift catalog for those who want to wrap their holidays in more of what matters—meaning, connection, and joy—and less of what doesn’t (stuff, stress, and waste). Categories include gifts for kids, spouses/partners, parents/grandparents, young adults, new parents, and the whole family.

PLEDGE: Simplify the Holidays – prioritize connection over consumption

Take our pledge to give at least one experiential gift to a friend or family member this holiday season—and help increase the happiness and well-being of someone you care about!

CALENDAR: Simplify the Holidays – count down to the holidays with more joy and less stress!

Our online six-week calendar provides practical tips, interactive quizzes, real stories, and personal inspiration to help you simplify the holidays.

GUIDE: Simplify the Holidays – practical tips for having a holiday with more joy and less stuff

Simplify the Holidays offers practical tips for having a holiday with more joy and less stuff. The booklet contains guidance to help you set a budget, relieve stress, come up with new gift ideas, and make your holiday season more meaningful.

VIDEO: Simplify the Holidays – share this with your loved ones to kickstart a conversation (5 min.)

Looking for a friendly way to express your desire to simplify the holidays? Share this video with your loved ones to kickstart a conversation that doesn't leave you feeling like the Grinch.  

COUPON BOOK: New Dream's Printable Coupon Book – a template for giving customized coupons to family & friends

Give gifts of time, experience, and memories—not more stuff! New Dream's Printable Coupon Book is an easy-to-use template that you can print out, customize, and give to family and friends of all ages.

ACTION KIT: Alternative Gift Fairs 101

Alternative Gift Fairs are a way to promote the gift-giving tradition of the holiday season without the wastefulness and commercialization of conventional shopping. Our resources include a step-by-step guide (including a timeline) to hosting a meaningful event that celebrates your values and supports important charities this holiday season.

TIPS: Reader Submissions: How I Simplify the Holidays

We asked our readers for their ideas for simplifying the holidays, and the response was overwhelming! Here are some of our favorite tips.

Hundred Dollar Holiday: The Case for a More Joyful Christmas

Author and environmentalist Bill McKibben discusses the "Hundred Dollar Holiday" program he started through local churches in the late-1990s, and why we need to reclaim the true joy of Christmas in our lives.

For additional resources, visit the Holidays & Celebrations page

Read more in the Holidays section of our blog