The 25 Best Christmas Movies You Should Enjoy This Holiday Season

The 25 Best Christmas Movies You Should Enjoy This Holiday Season

Disclaimer: "The Nightmare Before Christmas" is not a Christmas movie and I will fight you on this.

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Christmas movies are a long enjoyed tradition in my family. Some make it to our screen every year where we continue to laugh and cry after multiple viewings. Here are 25 of my favorite movies that I recommend you bring to your screen to get you in the holiday spirit.

1. "Home Alone"

When Kevin is left home alone while his family vacations for France, he must defend his house from burglars. This Christmas comedy features a slap-stick type of humor that rivals the Three Stooges. Because of that, it's always been a favorite for me and my grandpa around Christmas time. Watching it with him has become a yearly tradition that warms my heart year after year.

2. "The Christmas Card"

This Hallmark original sets the stage for love during the Christmas season when a small-town Faith and her church send Christmas cards to soldiers overseas. Receiver of one of these cards, Cody comes to the small-town where Faith lives and Hallmark does its thing. This movie is one of my moms FAVORITE Christmas movies, and she makes me wait to watch it with her every year. It's one of Hallmark's best, and I recommend that you watch it right away.

3. "The Christmas List"

This is another Hallmark classic that follows Melody, the perfume saleswoman, as everything on her jokingly written Christmas list starts to appear in her life. It's one of my favorites, and apparently an obscure Hallmark product, as it took me quite a while to find it. Anyhow, regardless of how cheesy it is, it's sure to put you in the Christmas spirit.

4. "National Lampoon's "Christmas Vacation"

This movie has been a tradition in my mom's side of the family for years. Once, she made green jello with lucky charm pieces in it and wrapped it up for my uncle and cousin for Christmas (if you know you know). This classic follows the story of Clark Griswald and his family as they try to steer through the holidays with the entire family at their house. I promise you'll laugh at least once watching this movie, and hopefully, you'll enjoy the whole thing.

5. "A Christmas Story"

This movie depicts a young boy named Ralphie growing up in Indiana during Christmastime. All he wants for Christmas is a Red Rider BB Gun, but all he keeps hearing in response is that he'll "shoot his eye out." This movie is a family favorite for us and makes its appearance every year on our screens. I'm sure that we can all relate to Ralphie and the struggles of childhood at Christmastime.

6. "Miracle on 34th Street"

I can hardly think of a more "classic" Christmas movie than this. The law takes on Santa in this film to prove the existence of Santa Clause, and we follow the journey of Chris Kringle in the meantime. I personally prefer the newer version of this movie that came out in 1994. The movie ends with all ends tied up nicely and a happy ending that gets viewers in the spirit of Christmas.

7. "White Christmas"

Can you say Christmas AND musicals? Yes, please! This film made the cut for obvious reasons. Those reasons mostly being Rosemary Clooney and Bing Crosby, but it's also filled with beautiful songs and wonderful acting. My best friend and I may or may not have also won a contest singing the song "Sisters" that's featured in this film. It's a Christmas classic that's great for everyone young and old

8. "The Polar Express"

I have vivid memories of my mom reading me this story about a boy who spends one magical night on a train that takes him to the North Pole. Upon arrival, Santa gifts him a bell from one of his reindeer, and the book my mom read to me came with a similar bell that I would get to ring at the end of the story. This movie rendition was nothing short of magical and brought to life the childhood wonder I experienced every time my mom read this to me. I suggest checking out both the movie and the book.

9. "A Charlie Brown Christmas"

If the music from this Christmas classic alone doesn't get you to watch it, I don't know what will. This wonderful little cartoon depicts Charlie Brown in his Christmas play while he tries to find the true meaning of Christmas. It's short, sweet, and beautiful and should be watched every year.

10. "Jingle All The Way"

If you ask my mom, she'll tell you this movie starring Arnold Schwartzenegger is nothing short of ridiculous, but my dad and I love it. What's not to love about a dad scouring the city for the perfect toy for his son that he may or may not have forgotten to get until the last minute? This movie is full of laughs and should definitely make this year's watch list.

11. "How the Grinch Stole Christmas"

Now I won't relay the plot of this one for you because, even if you don't already know it, it's pretty well explained in the title. I recently watched the newest remake of this movie and I LOVED IT. Benedict Cumberbatch did a wonderful job, and I thought that the creators did an excellent job of adding in the subplot of Cindy Lou Who and her mom. Whether you watch the original cartoon, the Jim Carey live action, or the recent animated version, this is a Christmas classic that just can't help but grow your heart three sizes.

12. "A Christmas Carol" 

Charles Dickens' work is probably the OG Christmas tale (other than the Bible of course). There have been multiple renditions of this over the years including an animated version and a Muppet's remake (which is my personal favorite). Whatever version you choose to watch, I hope that you'll enjoy the tale of an old curmudgeon seeing the reason for the season and bringing hope and joy to a family in need.

13. "Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer"

I'm sure you've heard the popular song that tells the tale of a red-nosed outcast who saves Christmas, but the movie is also a must-see this time of year. The little felt-looking characters instantly remind me of Christmas. Enjoy this movie with your best friends by your side and let the Christmas celebrating begin!

14. "Home Alone Two: Lost In New York"

First and foremost, I recommend that you watch John Mulaney's bit on this movie. Secondly, I recommend that you order a large cheese pizza just for you while you watch this Christmas classic sequel. As far as sequels go, this is one of the better ones where we get to see Kevin again out-smart the Wet Bandits and save Christmas. So do yourself a favor and watch this movie ya' filthy animal!

15. "Elf"

Will Ferrel brought joy to all of our hearts when he played Buddy the Elf who travels from the North Pole to New York City to meet his dad at Christmastime. After this movie, we'll forever be quoting the iconic lines and laughing out loud at the goofy humor that Buddy brings to our screen.

16. "The Santa Clause"

Who knew that Tim Allen would make such a good Santa Clause after accidentally pushing the previous Santa off his roof? I love this movie and continue to watch it year after year. It's a family favorite and has a pretty decent sequel, which brings me to my next item...

17. "The Santa Clause Two"

In this sequel, Santa must find a wife before Christmas or else he ceases to become Santa. As ridiculous as it may sound, it makes for a pretty entertaining movie. (Disclaimer, the third installment of this series doesn't make the cut because let's face it: Jack Frost just didn't bring it to the screen). Be sure to check this one out this holiday season as well.

18. "Frosty the Snowman"

We've all heard the song about a snowman who comes to life with the aid of Christmas magic. This cartoon favorite tells the same story and brings joy and friendship to our screens. If you're in the mood to watch a Christmas classic, but don't have a lot of time on your hands, this is the movie for you. It'll put you in the Christmas spirit without taking up too much of your time which is perfect for the holiday season.

19. "The Year Without A Santa Clause"

Now the real plot of this movie is that Santa becomes too sick to do Christmas and it must be carried out by his elves, but I find that the real stars of this movie are the Miser Brothers. Heat Miser and Snow Miser both have musical numbers that will be stuck in your head for days. This is another movie animated in the style of Rudolph, but it's not nearly as common as its counterpart. I highly recommend that, if you haven't already seen it, to check this movie out!

20. "Christmas With The Kranks"

Tim Allen makes the list again in a holiday comedy where a suburban family attempts to skip Christmas only to have to pull it all together last-minute for their daughter's surprise homecoming. You'll laugh out loud at Jamie Lee Curtis alongside Allen as they try to navigate not buying a Christmas tree and refusing the annual donation to the police department only to need both organizations' assistance in the end. It's lighthearted and amusing and will warm your heart by the end with the holiday spirit.

21. "The Little Drummer Boy"

Somehow I almost forgot this one, but it's been a favorite of mine for a long time. I believe my family still owns the VHS of this movie which tells you how old it is. Regardless, this short little movie tells the story of the drummer who plays his instrument for the newborn baby Jesus. It's heartwarming and short, and the perfect way to introduce your young ones to the Biblical Christmas story.

22. "A Season For Miracles"

This is another Hallmark favorite in my family's household. It tells the story of a young aunt and her niece and nephew that are in her care. They're on the run from the law as their real mother is unfit to take care of them, but the aunt can't stand to see them under the care of the state. In the meantime, they take up residence in an abandoned home under an alias as the deceased homeowner's returned family. Of course, there's a love story involved, but all of the loose ends get tied up in the end and Christmas is saved. If you manage to find a copy of this one, watch it immediately and also invite me over because it's a really good one.

23. "The Christmas Shoes"

Interested in crying your heart out this Christmas? Well, let me present to you Rob Lowe and the son of a cancer patient who only wants to buy his mom a pair of shoes to dance in for Christmas. I read the book in middle school and vividly remember trying to wipe away tears during the middle of fifth period. This Christmas tale really depicts the true meaning of Christmas and will warm your heart days after you've watched it.

24. "The Most Wonderful Time of the Year"

If you're a fan of Henry Winkler, I recommend you check out this Hallmark original. In this movie, Winkler, who is not a fan of his daughter's current boyfriend, takes in a friendly face that he meets on his flight home. Over time, he tries to win over his daughter to this new man and kick out the old beau. It's funny and sweet, and should definitely make it on your holiday watch list.

25. "Prancer"

I haven't watched this movie in a long time, but it's definitely a good one. A little girl finds a reindeer that she believes to been Santa's and attempts to nurse it back to health, against her father's wishes. This isn't one of the more common Christmas movies so if you're looking for a different addition to your list, I recommend you check this out.

And with that, I conclude my Christmas movie recommendations. I hope that you have a wonderful holiday celebrated with those you love, and take a little bit of time to yourself during this busy time of the year. Merry Christmas!

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100 Ways To Practice Self-Care In Your Everyday Life, In 20 Minutes Or Less

Simple ways to start taking care of yourself.

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Life is overwhelming and distracting so it's easy to forget about yourself sometimes, but practicing small self-care acts is easy. Making time for yourself every day isn't selfish and is really good for your mental health. I think it's important for everyone to spend time doing things that make them happy and more calm, even if you only dedicate 20 minutes each day. Putting yourself first can lead to growth so many other aspects of your life.

Obviously, each person is allowed to practice self-care in their own unique way, but here are some ideas to get you started!

1. Do something new. 

2. Make a list of things you need to get done that week. 

3. Drink some hot tea. 

4. Go for a walk on a scenic trail.

5. Paint your nails.

6. Have a good laugh.

7. Buy yourself flowers.

8. Light a candle.

9. Do some tidying up.

10. Don't feel bad for saying 'no.'

11. Listen to music.

12. Slow down.

13. Drink a smoothie.

14. Run mindless errands.

15. Write down your goals for the week.

16. Talk to someone about the future.

17. Wake up early and get coffee. 

18. Take care of a plant. 

19. Take a bubble bath. 

20. Give yourself a compliment.

21. Give a stranger a compliment.

22. Watch a movie.

23. Put your phone down.

24. Declutter your personal space.

25. Go to bed early. 

26. Pray or meditate. 

27. Go for a drive. 

28. Make it a habit to stargaze. 

29. Read a book. 

30. Read poems. 

31. Sing loudly. 

32. Make a list of things you're grateful for. 

33. Drink a lot of water. 

34. Put on make-up for no reason.

35. Watch funny videos. 

36. Take a deep breath. 

37. Distance yourself from negativity. 

38. Unfollow people you don't care to follow on social media. 

39. Have a pajama day. 

40. Read an inspirational book. 

41. Call your parents/ loved ones. 

42. Donate old clothing. 

43. Dedicate a day out of the week to not eating meat. 

44. Do a fun craft or DIY project. 

45. Put on a face mask and relax. 

46. Do a small workout. 

47. Take a power nap. 

48. Listen to a podcast. 

49. Open a window. 

50. Open your curtains in the morning to let in natural light. 

51. Make your bed. 

52. Cook dinner instead of eating out. 

53. Play/ cuddle with an animal. 

54. At the end of the day, think of all the positive things that happened.

55. Moisturize. 

56. Buy a comforting blanket. 

57. Give someone a hug. 

58. Create a vision board. 

59. Have some alone time.

60. Enjoy the sun on your skin. 

61. Dance like nobody is watching.

62. Walk in the rain every once in a while. 

63. Drive with the windows down. 

64. Give someone a gift for no reason. 

65. Get a massage. 

66. Do something that gets your adrenaline running. 

67. Spend the day at the library or a book store. 

68. Organize your work space/ binders. 

69. Spend a weekend in. 

70. Recognize hard work and reward yourself. 

71. Sign up for a work out class. 

72. Eat lunch with a friend. 

73. Spend the day helping others. 

74. Get your hair done. 

75. Have a good cry. 

76. Use sticky notes. 

77. Color code your planner. 

78. Print out pictures and hang them up. 

79. Hang motivational quotes on your mirror and read them when you get ready. 

80. Do random acts of kindness. 

81. Buy fuzzy socks. 

82. Redecorate or rearrange furniture. 

83. Be present. 

84. Set a new years resolution. 

85. Make a bucket list. 

86. Stretch in the morning. 

87. Watch an interesting documentary. 

88. Make a music playlist.

89. Watch the sunrise or sunset. 

90. Explore somewhere new.

91. Be slow to respond to negativity. 

92. Have a game night with friends. 

93. Buy concert tickets. 

94. Have a nightly routine before bed. 

95. Eat your favorite dessert. 

96. Do something you've been putting off. 

97. Invest in essential oils. 

98. Manage your finances. 

99. Buy a new outfit. 

100. Make your own gratitude list. 

Try at least one of these every week and see how you feel! I guarantee you will notice a difference in the way you are living your life.

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Meditation: The Good, The Bad, and The Benefits

Is meditation effective? Is it for me? Should I try it? If you want answers to these questions, they are right below.

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The definition of meditation is different for anyone that you ask, but overall, it is used to clear the brain of any negative thoughts and calm the body down. Many people do it before bed to improve sleep or when they wake up to start their day with a positive attitude. Many religions and cultures incorporate meditation in its practices because of the many healing properties it has.

However, even after being proved as beneficial many times, many people still see no point in meditation and many people believe there is no reason to do meditation in a private setting. However, the many benefits of meditation outweigh the negatives and I am here to hopefully persuade you into incorporating this into your daily schedule.

First, meditation reduces stress and controls anxiety. Stress reduction is the reason a lot of people start meditation. mental and physical stress cause increased levels of the stress hormone cortisol. This produces many of the harmful effects of stress, such as the release of inflammation-promoting chemicals called cytokines. These effects can disrupt sleep, promote depression and anxiety, increase blood pressure and contribute to fatigue and cloudy thinking. A type of meditation, called mindful meditation, can reduce the inflammation, which was proved by an 8-week study by ScienceDirect.com.

Research has shown that meditation may also improve symptoms of stress-related conditions, including irritable bowel syndrome, post-traumatic stress disorder and fibromyalgia.

It also reduced symptoms of anxiety disorders, such as phobias, social anxiety, paranoid thoughts, obsessive-compulsive behaviors and panic attacks, proven from that same 8 week study. It also helps control job-related anxiety in high-pressure work environments. One study found that a meditation program reduced anxiety in a group of nurses.

Secondly, meditation promotes emotional health. Some forms of mediation can lead to an improved sense of self and a more positive outlook on life. One study shows that symptoms of depression had decreased in adults when they incorporated meditation into their daily schedule by John Hopkins University researchers.

The inflammation-promoting chemicals called cytokines that we talked about before can affect mood, which lead to depression. Like we said earlier, these cytokines were reduced due to mediation. As I said before, meditation aims to get rid of negative thoughts in the brain in that period that you are doing it, but when you aren't it helps you recognize those thoughts and get rid of them in a healthy way. Meditation is important in practice, but it helps a lot in your day to day life.

Many people believe that meditation is pointless and there is no tangible evidence that supports the physiological benefits of meditation, however, I know it has changed my life and has made me a lot more of an optimist and I hope that this helped you into trying out meditation and hopefully incorporate it into your life.

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