By Deirdre Haggerty

As Andy Williams’ iconic holiday song depicts, the winter season is (for some) truly the most wonderful time of the year. While some might experience a bout of winter blues, others revel in the sight of snow, winter sport and the joy of cheerfulness that fills the air — at least until Super Bowl. Of course, there are the holidays such as Christmas and Hanukkah, as well as New Year’s Eve where family gatherings and parties take precedent. However, there are many additional, wonderful ways to celebrate winter that last until the first sign of spring.

Movie/TV Marathon

Oh, baby it’s cold outside. Forget the fuzzy sweater and stay in bed, in your PJs, and catch up on favorite movies or television shows. Thanks to streaming services, you now have access to the best movies and top-rated series you might have missed. You’ll never feel left out during Monday morning water-cooler talk because you’ll be in the know. Just go easy on the snacking, because swimsuit season is right around the corner.

Bake-Off

Baking cookies keeps the home warm and filled with delicious aromas all winter long. However, if calories count, there are many healthy options for those watching the sugar intake. The Healthy Dessert Blog provides delicious cookie ideas for the nutritionally minded. In addition, Chocolate Covered Katie has fantastic recipes for 27 healthy holiday cookies. Have a bake-off with friends and family and share the treats on a game night.

Game Night

Take turns visiting with friends for a fun game night. There are old standbys such as Monopoly, Clue, Gin and Poker or new favorites such as Cards Against Humanity. Serve hot cocoa or a warm adult beverage such as hot chocolate and whiskey with those delicious cookies you just baked. Visit BuzzFeed for more warm winter cocktail ideas.

Celebrate Outdoors

Get outside and breathe in the fresh air. Build a snowman, make a fort, have a snowball fight, create a snow angel or go sleigh riding in your local park. Build a fire pit to enjoy when the cold weather arrives and make S’mores. If it’s a snowless winter, then head to the mountains for a weekend getaway. Ski, snowboard, walk a snow-filled path or go tubing. You will thank yourself for the fun and create lifelong memories.

Holiday Lights

Every neighborhood has that one house—or an entire block—that could be seen from the space station. Take a local drive or stroll and gander at the creativity (or not) of those that love to decorate with a good light show. Sure, there are those homes that look like an elf ate one too many cookies. But then there are the breathtakingly, inventive dwellings that envelop the holiday spirit.

Read A Book

Let’s get our collective heads off social media, out of our devices and into a book. There’s nothing finer than the smell of a book, the feel of the pages and the comfort of diving into utter imagination. Curl up with a great book under the covers this winter as the snow falls outside. Or simply read a classic aloud to the kids. You’ll enjoy the togetherness and they’ll receive a little education at the same time.

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