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Celebrating the Holidays: Ideas to Include the Departed

Celebrating the Holidays: Ideas to Include the Departed

It can feel lonely and overwhelming when we are celebrating the holidays and missing our loved ones in spirit. However, honoring our loved ones during this season can help you feel the connection that still remains.

Our loved ones, in spirit, want us to celebrate, reminisce, and create more cherished memories. Although they are no longer in our physical world, they are not in some faraway, unreachable place. Simply invite them to the festivities with a mere thought or prayer, and you can be sure they won’t miss it for the world.

Spirit will often send us signs that they are present with us during these special occasions, so be sure to keep your heart open to the possibilities. I assure you that if you feel them with you or if you have to ask yourself if that was a sign, it most certainly was. Be sure to say thank you.


Consider honoring your loved ones by:

  • Bring out the photo albums to share. Ask the family to bring their collections, too. Also, take lots and lots of new photos throughout your celebrations, print them, and flip through them to see if you see anything unique in the photo, like an orb.


  • Create a memory tree or a wreath to honor a specific loved one or even many. Include on your tree pictures, special ornaments, and other memorabilia. You could make the ornaments together with family, letting everyone add their special touches and memories.


  • Plan a visit to your loved ones favorite place to visit or even a place that they always wanted to go.


  • Donate to someone in need or a special cause to honor your loved one. If money is tight, know that donating your time is as honorable. Look to be a part of something that your loved one supported.


  • Make and share your loved ones’ favorite holiday dish. While eating the dish, bond over the fond memories you each have.


  • Create a memorial table to display. Light some candles, and add pictures and other special memorabilia. Ask everyone to bring something to contribute to the table.


  • Create a special album or box for your loved one. Have some pens, crayons, stickers, and paper for everyone attending. As a family, sit together coloring pictures, writing letters and poems, and sharing the newest adventures with spirit. Add to the collection each year. Share together what you have all worked together to design over the years.


  • Celebrate a life by planting a life. This holiday season, plant something in honor of your loved one.


  • Make jewelry this holiday season to honor your loved one. The family could set up a jewelry-making table at the holiday party, and everyone could make a bracelet or necklace in the loved ones’ honor.


  • Release doves or balloons in honor of your loved one.


  • Paint some rocks in honor of your loved one. The family could paint together and then create a special garden or space at the cemetery with their pieces.


  • Everyone comes together wearing a shirt, a piece of jewelry, or other memorabilia that reminds them of their loved one.


  • Crank up the music during the holiday celebration. Play songs that your loved one listened to; dance together in their honor.


Be a heart with ears this holiday season. Share your loved ones stories. Also, let others share with you. Celebrate, grow together, and live in honor of your loved one.


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