Purveyor of Christmas cheer
For most people, “‘Twas the night before Christmas” applies less to Clement Clark Moore’s tale of Santa visiting a deserving household and more to the time when they get their holiday shopping done. With that in mind, here are ten sites to get you through the gift-giving and the family reunions (not to mention the over-eating) without pulling your hair out, going overboard with the eggnog and winding up in the neighbour’s yard.
These seven sites, listed in no particular order, range from silly to creepy to, shockingly, useful. Here’s to the best Christmas yet.
In the category of: Secret Santa duty made easy
The winner is: Elfster
What to expect: Elfster lets you and your friends sign up for a gift exchange, then anonymously assigns a Secret Santa to each one. Friends can give examples of what gifts they would like on their wishlist. Elfster also has the option of asking a friend a question about their tastes anonymously.
In the category of: Yes, Virginia, there is a website that tracks Santa’s every move
The winner is: NORAD Tracks Santa
What to expect: A Santa-tracking system on Christmas Eve. Using “radar, satellites, Santa cams and fighter jets,” Â the North American Aerospace Defense Command has been assiduously following Santa’s movement across the globe on the night before Christmas since 1958.
In the category of: Alternative Christmas
The winner is: Buy Nothing Christmas
What to expect: Low on funds? Disagree with the idea that “I love you” can be translate into a pair of pearl earrings? Buy Nothing Christmas offers ideas for homemade gifts, swap circles and ways to reduce excess consumerism for the holidays.
In the category of: Ways to give your profile picture a bit of Christmas cheer
The winner is : Elf Yourself
What to expect: You input a picture of yourself (or your brother, or your dog), and get an elf’d version back. I can’t believe I just used elf as a verb.
In the category of: How to trick your friends and family into believing you know what they like
The winner is: Shopycat app
What to expect: Ok, so this isn’t technically a website, but if you can get past the fact that the app’s intended use is to collect Facebook data, it is actually pretty useful. Shopycat is a Facebook application created by Walmart that collects data from your friend’s pages about their likes and dislikes. Based on that information, it then suggests gifts you can purchase for them.
In the category of: Easy on the rum there, Grandma
The winner is: Eggnogaholic
What to expect: A repertoire of variations on a classic holiday beverage, including eggnog pound cake, truffles and popcorn balls. Who knew there were so many uses for eggnog?
In the category of: Funny pictures on the Internet
The winner is: Sketchy Santas
What to expect: A Christmas twist on the crowd-favourite Failblog. Lots of pictures of creepy looking (or, alternatively, plain amazing) Santas.