10 Things Only True Christmas Lovers Will Understand

10 Things Only True Christmas Lovers Will Understand

Because the holidays are the best time of year, and only TRUE Christmas lovers embrace every moment.
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There are two things that (should) come to everyone’s mind when they think about Christmas: Elf, and childhood. One of the most fun-loving and fam-friendly movies of all time where Will Farell embodies the child in all of us, and those flashbacks to our younger days when Santa Clause, snow, and Christmas morning was all we could think about.

Still, as we get older, things change, and our attitudes towards Christmas change as well. However, some of us believe that we will never lose sight of the "Buddy the Elf" that lives inside us all. Without further ado, here are the 10 things all of us Christmas lovers will never outgrow.

1. No matter how old you get, there's still that little kid inside of you that gets excited when you hear the name "Santa Clause"


The spirit of Saint Nick is real, and always will be.

2. Those days when you go to the mall and every parent had the same idea to get a picture with their child and Santa Clause so you just join in the excitement because, why not


Who doesn't miss these days? I mean, come on, seriously.

3. All the grinches out there start to get annoyed asking why you're always in such a good mood around the holidays but you just stare at them and think


Snow, winter clothes, hot chocolate, ice skating... The real question is, why aren't you in such a good mood?

4. People keep trying to tell you that there is no Santa Clause, but you refuse to believe any of it


Do I believe that a large man slides down my chimney at night and eats my mom's cookies? No, maybe not. But the spirit of Saint Nick is real, it just is, okay?

5. Your parents put you on phone duty during the holidays to deal with the telemarketers because they know you'll drive away anyone at this time of year


I could be offended... But I'll take this one as a compliment.

6. You are always going to be excited about Christmas, but you still ensure you recognize the little things that make every day so special


Honestly, when is this ever not good news?

7. You try to be like everyone else in your family and enjoy the Christmas Eve party but you know you're going to wake up the next morning with a throbbing headache


Time to start asking if it's really going to be worth it...

8. FINALLY, Christmas morning comes and you see that the tree is fully decorated with lights and ornaments and you just look at your parents in amazement like


Truly, a huge accomplishment to all the parents who pull this off without fail.

9. When Christmas ends and everyone pulls you aside and tells you that it's time to go back to reality and ease out of the overly aggressive Christmas mood just a bit


I mean, I'm a bit bummed out, but I do understand.

10. And at first, you're pretty understanding, that is until you realize you have to wait 365 days until it's socially acceptable for you to re-embrace the Buddy in you


Please, just one more Christmas carol...

Cover Image Credit: YouTube | Movieclips Trailer Vault

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13 New Ways To Inspire Yourself This Spring

Spring out of those post-spring break dumps and into springtime.
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As the semester winds down and the weather warms up, our sights always seem to be set on summer break. Most of us are just barely hanging on by a thread to finish out the semester – I’m guilty of it myself. But, let’s not neglect our fleeting weeks of mid-60s, sunshine, and flowers. Here are 13 ways to get out of the post-winter/end-of-semester blues, and into spring!

1. Spring cleaning

This one might go without saying, but cleaning up isn’t limited to the clutter of your bedroom. Start cutting out toxic things out of your life. This can be food, relationships, or bad habits. Try fostering a new hobby. And, cleaning up your household won’t hurt, either.

2. Start a garden or buy a plant

Planting a few flower or vegetable seeds are a perfect way to brighten up your home for the season. Buying a pre-planted or fake plant counts, too.

3. Nature walk

Visit a local park, prairie path, or garden. Taking a long walk or jog to decompress and connect with the world around you can be an easy fix to a cluttered mind and restless heart.

4. Star gazing

On a clear night, spend some time looking up at the sky to decompressing. It’s a nice reminder of how small we really are in this universe. It can be fun to point out the constellations you remember learning about in elementary school science class, too.

5. Splatter painting

This one is my personal favorite. Visit a craft store and pick up some art supplies.Then, go outside, turn on some music, lay out your canvas, and go to town. This can be really therapeutic, too.

6. Try out some new recipes

Although you can do this pretty much any time throughout the year, look up some good BBQ recipes for your grill to help get you in the spring and summer mood.

7. Visit a playground and relish in being a child again

Take a break from the final weeks of the semester to be a kid again! Swinging on a swing set and climbing the monkey bars can be more cleansing than you think.

8. Stop using your phone before bed

Taking a digital break in general is a great idea, but especially if you have trouble sleeping, spending those 20 minutes before bed without looking at a screen can have a much better impact. Break out that book you’ve been meaning to read for months now, and start reading that before bed. It helps you fall asleep faster, too!

9. Spruce up your wardrobe with some DIYs

Go thrifting and try some of these cute DIY ideas for a brand new wardrobe on a budget. Tie-dying is a personal favorite of mine, too.

10. Yoga and meditation

If you’re guilty of having “monkey mind”, like me, spending as little as five minutes a day meditating or doing basic yoga stretches can help immensely. Blocking out the world to really focus on your breathing can do so much for your mentality and your attitude for the rest of the day.

11. Make a bucket list

This can be as personalized as you’d like. Make a list of must-dos for the end of the semester, for summer break, or for the rest of your life. They can be anything from singing in the rain to going bungee jumping. Having those little things to cross off your list gives you something to look forward to.

12. Volunteer

Whatever area you’re interested in, whether it’s working with the elderly, animal shelters, or homeless shelters, find some local places to volunteer with. Not only are you helping someone else in need, that internal gratification is a great feeling.

13. Take pictures of what makes you happy every day

Try this out for a week or so: photograph a thing or person that made you smile that day. Compile your photos at the end, and look at how beautiful your life really is.

Enjoy, and happy spring!

Cover Image Credit: Celeste Horrocks

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What It's Like To Stay In Pittsburgh Over The Summer

What's there to do when our teachers are hibernating for three months?
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It’s weird for me to think that some people don’t stay in Pittsburgh over the summer, if only because I haven’t gone home for any summer since I’ve been in college and I have no inclination to do so. There are plenty of reasons to stay: classes, research opportunities, jobs and internships, and some people find that they just don’t want to go home and find a reason to stay. Of course, even with all those incentives there are still some of you who will want to go home, wherever that may be, so hopefully I can clue you in on what it’s like over those three months.

To begin, Pittsburgh is absolutely gorgeous in the summer. You get a taste of it in the fall, and a whiff in spring, but wow, with the flowers and the trees in bloom, places like Frick park, The Point, The Waterfront, and Mount Washington are completely transformed in the haze of green and other colors. The second thing I always notice, around the third week in, is how quiet Oakland becomes. Walking around campus, you’re lucky to run into 8 strangers over the course of your day, although there are always a handful of stragglers in Hillman or Cathy. It feels nice, in an odd way; the campus feels much more personal, much more accommodating to you. And then, with the lack of people and stress from school, you start to branch out from Oakland and see more of the city, which is where the real fun begins.

We all know we go to the University of Pittsburgh, but honestly it’d be more accurate to say we go to school in Oakland. Campus can feel pretty big during the school year, but Pittsburgh is a city of dozens of neighborhoods outside of the four or five that make up Pitt’s domain, and most of us stay orbiting around specific buildings that are hubs for our majors. I didn’t really start understanding the dynamic of larger Pittsburgh until summer after my freshman year when I started to see comedy shows on a regular basis downtown, and it completely opened my eyes to the opportunities we miss every day during the school year.

I’m not trying to judge anyone: you’re lucky to see me outside of Hillman, Cathy, or my apartment during the school year. But still, when I think about all the festivals, museum openings, theatre performances, comedy shows, art galleries, and independent classes that are offered around Pittsburgh, just to name a few of the options available in a city like Pittsburgh with vast public services and interesting people, I can’t help but feel like I’m missing out. If you ever get a chance, I’d say stay here over a summer, even if only for a couple weeks. And even if that’s not in the cards, maybe check out some of the local stuff happening outside of Oakland; Pittsburgh can surprise you.

Cover Image Credit: Robpinion on Wikimedia Commons

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