My Plea Against Hallmark Holidays

My Plea Against Hallmark Holidays

Our celebrations shouldn't exist for sales cycles.
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I hate holidays. This is perhaps an unpopular opinion, but I stand by it.

I don't mean to undermine the validity of celebration and family time, which I think is a valuable part of familial life, but I feel that it's simply unnecessary to celebrate every family gathering with a five dollar greeting card and some useless, undesirable gift from your neighborhood knick-knack shoppe.

I feel like I should first explain the concept of a so-called "Hallmark holiday". Hallmark holidays are holidays with no basis other than quarter sales' increases and dependent upon the mass purchases of a consumer base. Think Valentine's Day, for example.

We as a culture celebrate Valentine's Day as a day to commemorate or honor your love of a significant other.... but shouldn't that happen without the purchase of cheesy greeting cards and overpriced rose bouquets? Celebrating your love is fine, in fact, it's exceptional, but why even bother if it only happens on a scheduled calendar date to cash in on your affection?

Again, think of all the days we have in familial celebration as a culture. Mother's Day, Father's Day, Grandparent's Day, etc. Sure, all of these family members are celebration-worthy in their own individual way, but is the best way to show your love and appreciate really on one day of the year with an overpriced singing card and some vaguely personal gift? I think not.

There's nothing wrong with partaking in these celebrations.

It's hard not to, with everything we see in advertisements, on store shelves, and online centered around some sort of sales boosting celebration, but you have to admit some absurdity in its practice. Why are we buying cards to express our joy and affection? Why do we celebrate some of the most important relationships we have only one, calendar determined day of the year?

I think these actions speak less of our humanity, and more of our undying commitment to cultural standards. Is the best way to celebrate a loved one by running to Walmart on 11:46 the night before to buy the last card in stock to share for their designated holiday? Or is it showing that affection in ways that transcend a pay period?

Celebrating the relationships in our lives is an important way to connect with the people we love, but that should not revolve around calendar days. Even more traditional holidays get wrapped up in the marketing mania, with all of winter being a shopping extravaganza and spring being a time for bunnies and eggs of sweets and treats.

Taking a day to celebrate a loved one is a-okay, so long as the reason transcends the season and the meaning behind our joyous celebrations don't get lost in a spinning tower of greeting cards.

Cover Image Credit: David's Disposal

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10 Bible Verses For Thanksgiving

Psalm 34:1
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The Thanksgiving season is a time we spend with our loved ones giving thanks for the blessings we are given. Here are 20 Bible verses that remind us of what Thanksgiving is all about:

1) 1 Chronicles 16:34

Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; his love endures forever.

2) Colossians 3:15-17

And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body. And be thankful. Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God. And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.

3) Philippians 4:6

Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.

4) Psalm 30:12

That my glory may sing your praise and not be silent. O Lord my God, I will give thanks to you forever!

5) Isaiah 12:4-5

And you will say in that day: “Give thanks to the Lord, call upon his name, make known his deeds among the peoples, proclaim that his name is exalted. “Sing praises to the Lord, for he has done gloriously; let this be made known in all the earth.

6) Hebrews 12:28-29

Therefore, since we receive a kingdom which cannot be shaken, let us show gratitude, by which we may offer to God an acceptable service with reverence and awe; for our God is a consuming fire.

7) Jonah 2:9

But I will sacrifice to You With the voice of thanksgiving. That which I have vowed I will pay Salvation is from the Lord."

8) 1 Timothy 4:4-5

For everything created by God is good, and nothing is to be rejected, if it is received with gratitude; for it is sanctified by means of the word of God and prayer.

9) Psalm 28:7

The Lord is my strength and my shield; My heart trusts in Him, and I am helped; Therefore my heart exults, And with my song I shall thank Him.

10) Psalm 100:4

Enter His gates with thanksgiving, And His courts with praise. Give thanks to Him; bless His name.

Cover Image Credit: Wallpapers Pro

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6 Confessions On What Makes Christmas SO Special From A Christmas-oholic

Why November and December reign as the best time of the year — no ifs, ands or buts.

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Christmas is right around the corner people! It's time to celebrate my favorite holiday of the year.

Below are six reasons why Christmas is undeniably the most wonderful time of the year. Let the countdown to Christmas begin!

1. Gift-giving is my specialty

Look no further, for you've come across the right person. Whether it be family or friends, I am able to find something meaningful. Big or small, I've made peoples' year because of the thought I invested into what I picked out special for them.

I have a strong gut that helps me decide on items and I always make a point to listen to someone's likes or interests and store them in the back of my mind. I enjoy wrapping gifts in fancy paper and decorating them with pretty bows.

Seeing their face light up whenever they rip open the gift is the best part. I love making people realize how special they are to me.

2. Everyone is joyful

The Christmas spirit hits people right after Thanksgiving wraps up. Thinking about cookie decorating, wrapping gifts and buying presents puts them in the mood. It's amazing how people come together during this time and can spread the holiday cheer.

People manage to wear a smile and converse more, rubbing off on others. Christmas caroling encourages others to get into the spirit.

Even though it's cold and snowy, Christmas is a saving grace in getting everyone through it. I find myself become happier towards others when the thought of Christmas is mentioned. 25 days will never be enough. Smile and find your inner joy!

3. School is off 

Say goodbye to homework and stress. Being released for break means students can focus on making their Christmas a great one. Most colleges even go as far as giving kids near a month off.

School becomes the least of our worries and makes Christmas a priority. We're given a long opportunity for relaxing and spending time with loved ones, all in the name of Christmas!

4. Christmas movies for everyone

ABC Family's "25 Days of Christmas" and Hallmark's Christmas movies fill our screens during this time of year. As corny as they are, these movies are a staple to bringing in the Christmas spirit.

They're only here for a few short months, so it's important to make the most of them. Nothing beats sitting by the fire with a cup of hot chocolate watching these movies.

5. Santa is watching you

Even at 21, sometimes I still believe Santa is keeping a close eye on my behavior. Being a good person should be a yearly thing, especially towards those you're close to. The deliverance of gifts is the highlight of my holidays.

Seeing kids who wait for Santa brings back memories of when I was their age. To them, he is their idol and does anything they can to prove they've been good this year. Nobody wants a bag of coal in their stocking!

6. Christmas charities

Giving donations to the needy is critical during Christmas time. With bitter weather and dropping temperatures, those that are less fortunate suffer. Kind-hearted people make blankets, ring bells for the Salvation Army and make food for those who need it most.

Christmas is a time for giving to those you know and don't. Hearts get bigger and reach out. People who don't have families to celebrate the holidays with are given a reason to smile from others bringing cheer into their lives.

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