14 December, 2016
Christmas is December 25. Many people celebrate the holiday around the world with special food, music and gift exchanges.
But the holiday can also be very busy and difficult. Sometimes it is hard to get into the spirit of Christmas. What can you do?
Turn to tech!
Apps, websites, videos, music and more can help create a festive mood and spread the cheer!
RACK - Random Acts of Christmas Kindness
Nothing spreads good cheer better than helping others. Start a holiday tradition with Random Acts of Christmas Kindness, or RACK. RACKing does not have to be costly; the best gifts are often those that take the most thought and no money at all.
This RACK Pinterest board has pins including RACKS for the elderly, kids and more.
Also check out RACK webpages to get ideas for helping others. Baton RougeMoms.com has one.
And, the Kiddie Matters website has 30 ideas for random acts of kindness you can do with children.
Virtual Tour of Santa's House
Real estate website Zillow has a virtual tour of Santa's house at the North Pole. Head to Santa's House on Zillow and click on the video to see where Santa lives.
The page includes information that can be found on Zillow pages about real houses, like age and number of rooms. You can also look at photos of the inside. Santa's house is not for sale, but you can still take the tour!
Holiday music can get you in a jolly spirit. The Christmas Radio app can help you find seasonal songs.
You can choose tunes from more than 100 Internet radio stations and add favorites to your Spotify playlists. The app also lets you choose favorite themes and background colors. Fall asleep to Christmas music with the sleep timer.
Music genres include Christmas Pop, Rock, Classical, Instrumental, Jazz and Smooth. The app is free with in-app purchases available.
Christmas Radio is available in the Google Play store.
The World Radio Stations Christmas iPhone and iPad App is a free app that broadcasts in ten languages from 97 radio stations around the world. Search for music by language or by genre, such as jazz, classical or music for children.
World Radio Stations Christmas is available in the iTunes App Store.
Spotify is filled with Christmas playlists. Search for "Christmas music" to find playlists or create your own.
Here is a Christmas music Spotify playlist to get you started:
PNP Santa Video
Each year the PNP website lets users create a free video with their gift wish lists for Santa. The videos are fun for children and adults. They can include the name of the person, the gift they want, photos, and whether they have been naughty or nice.
To create the video, add a photo of yourself or someone else. Then add information about what you or they would like as a Christmas present. PNP will use it to create a personal video for free in just about one minute.
After you create a video you can share it with others via Facebook and email.
Christmas Facebook Stickers
Fans of Christmas and Facebook stickers will enjoy adding Christmas stickers to their Facebook messages. Add stickers such as Charlie Brown Christmas to messages you send on the Facebook website or in the Messenger app.
Use the free stickers in Facebook messages to help your friends find the holiday spirit themselves!
I'm Dorothy Gundy. And I'm Rick Hindman.
Carolyn Nicander Mohr wrote this report for VOA Learning English. Caty Weaver was the editor.
Do you use tech to get into the holiday spirit? Have you tried any of these websites, apps or other tech tools? Do you have any holiday tech you recommend? Share your thoughts in the Comments Section below or on 51VOA.COM.
Words in This Story
spirit - n. the force within a person that is believed to give the body life, energy, and power
festive - adj. cheerful and exciting :suited to a celebration or holiday
mood - n. the way someone feels : a person's emotional state
Advent - n. the period of time beginning four Sundays before Christmas
virtual - adj. existing or occurring on computers or on the Internet
jolly - adj. full of happiness and joy : happy and cheerful
theme - n. the particular subject or idea on which the style of something is based
genre - n. a particular type or category of literature or art
broadcast - v. to send out (signals, programs, etc.) by radio or television
naughty - adj. behaving badly — used especially to describe a child who does not behave properly or obey a parent, teacher, etc.