It's the beginning of December, which means it's time for Christmas shopping, ABC Family's 25 days of Christmas movies, tree decorating, and peppermint mochas, but I don't want to talk about the seasonal norms, I'd rather talk about the traditions that you build with your families and about how Christmas time typically means the family things that you love doing but can only stand doing once or twice a year.
Christmas is the time of family and goodwill, and part of me thinks that as the world pushes to a complete technology functioning world, we forget the things that make Christmas, well, Christmas. (Cue holiday rant, please forgive me.) Holidays are becoming more stressful than anything really, I mean Thanksgiving has been reduced to about six hours, because Black Friday starts at like 6 o'clock in the evening on Thanksgiving and the new cyber sales, last till like 5 o'clock the next Tuesday. And that's not even counting the last minute shopping the night before the holiday, because we're trained to want specific things and our parents want to give us those things so we don't melt down on Christmas morning. I mean, I'm not saying stop the holiday shopping and all that, but I do think in this day in age, we've forgotten about the things that make the holiday season so enjoyable.
So, back to my point.
Traditions, it's something that we that we establish when we're little, and the things we create with our friends and later on spouses, that make the holiday season so happy and warm. I know in my household, there are a few that if I don't do with my family every year, I won't feel like I'm in the holiday spirit at all. So, I picked three things that my family does, that I'm sure most people can relate to during the holiday season.
1. Christmas Movies/Music
My top Christmas movies have to be "A Christmas Story," "Love Actually," "Elf," and "The Polar Express." Once the semester begins to wind down and I'm wearing my winter coat on a daily basis now, than I typically start to want to get into the spirit and the best way to get into the Christmas spirit is to watch Christmas movies right? Christmas movies are a tradition in my house, probably because it was something that kept me and my brother from interrupting my parents' gift planning every five minutes.
Christmas music, like most people, is a big one, because one of my oldest memories is the excitement my mother had when she got to play a Christmas music. My mom had this old CD with a really awesome version of Jingle Bell rock, that I mostly associated with the Christmas season approaching. I also loved the radio stations that started to play Christmas music, 24 hours a day that me and my brother could sing along to.
2. Christmas Pajamas
This is a tradition that typically isn't till Christmas eve, but it's the top of the list for me, because it's something I grew up with. My parents always bought Christmas pajamas as a Christmas present, so that me and my brother would have something to open early, and it's my favorite because, hello fuzzy pants and socks!
My mother's explanation behind this, was that when we were little, we would have cute, Christmas themed pajamas on the next morning and when she took pictures of us reacting to our new toys, we looked cute and Christmasy, and the pictures would look cute.
3. Baking, Baking, and more Baking
This was really one that started as I got older. When I was little, it was for giving Santa Claus cookies when he left my presents and when I got older it became more about the fact that I wanted cookies to eat because I love cookies, and my grandmother wanted us to bring something to Christmas dinner. So, more often than not, there were more cookies or brownies in our house than normal, beginning the holiday weight gain processes.
Even though now, it's more me eating the cookie dough than actually eating cookies, it is something that I have to do every year. Some years it's cookies, some it's brownies, and in more recent years, it was pie I brought home from work. (My family loved me even more when I started working at an amazing pie shop.) So, for me, it isn't the Christmas season without an excess of deserts in our house either being brought to class Christmas parties or for family gatherings.
The semester is winding down, the weather is finally cooling off, and Starbucks is bringing out that gingerbread and peppermint drinks back out, so it's almost time for Christmas, and I personally can't wait to do the three I talked about as well as so many others that are specific to my family. So, even though our lives are becoming more and more dependent of technology, I hope that we can all remember the little things that make Christmas personal and festive.