By DYLAN LATORE– Do you remember getting out of bed in the morning to see a snow-covered world and feeling a sense of excitement and wonder? Or laying on your back in bed at night, unable to fall asleep and jittering with anticipation because you knew in the morning it would be Christmas? Or begging your mom or dad to “Just open one” present the night before? When I think of Christmas, these are only a few of the thousands of thoughts and memories that flood into my brain like liquid nostalgia. But now these thoughts really only feel like memories. Simply put, Christmas doesn’t feel the same anymore.
I can remember being able to effortlessly write a Christmas Wish List a mile-long, but now it even pains me to ask for anything because I feel guilty. Why would I make my parents drop a large amount of money on something I could work for and earn myself? When item prices stop being these meaningless and imaginary numbers, they just feel like wallet burners. And you can say, “Oh, but Christmas isn’t even about the presents it’s about family and being together and celebrating baby Jesus” But try to tell me with a straight face that seven-year-old you was more concerned with childbirth and Uncle Roger than your brand-spanking new PlayStation 2.
Really, it just comes with age. As you get older, it is easy for the Christmas Spirit to fade away. But nevertheless, there are tons of ways to bring the Christmas Spirit back into your life every year. Getting older doesn’t mean the end of Christmas. Try out a few of these techniques to bring some joy this holiday season:
The first example on the list is easily a favorite of many. And that is to arrange a Secret Santa exchange. Whether that be for your sports team, a certain class, or even just within your friend group. This involves each participant drawing a name out of a hat of the other participants. After all names are chosen, the fun part begins. Gifts are bought all around, and after some patient waiting, you have an exchange. It is a fun way to give and receive gifts, and the mystery of who got who makes it all the more exciting.
Another similar activity is a White Elephant Party/ Gift Exchange. The term white elephant refers to an extravagant but burdensome gift that cannot be easily disposed of, based on the legend of the King of Siam giving rare albino elephants to courtiers who had displeased him, that they might be ruined by the animals’ upkeep costs. But in this case, a White Elephant party involves bringing any gift (usually low cost and undesirable), wrapping it up, then setting it under a tree or in a pile. Going around a circle, each participant can either choose a mystery gift from the pile or steal a gift from someone else in the circle. Senior Jeremy Adamson said, “The best white elephant gift I’ve ever received was an extra large Fruit by the Foot. I ate the entire thing in one day.” This can lead to some pretty intense moments and an exciting ending. This game can very easily ruin multi-year friendships though, so be careful.
Listen to Christmas music! Listening to Christmas music is one of the easiest ways to bring the spirit of Christmas into your life. This doesn’t just include the boring old songs that get played every year. Modern Christmas music gets produced every year as well. Artists like Chance the Rapper, DRAM, Jeremiah, and even DMX, have put out their own collections of music or albums. Senior Will Luetkehans actually stated, “My favorite Christmas album is the Chance x Jeremih mixtape: Merry Christmas Lil Mama.” And that’s just the tip of the iceberg as well, there are so many more selections of all genres to satisfy your musical needs. Put on Christmas jams, and decorate your room with festive items to really have you feeling jolly.
Even putting Christmas lights in your room can really make a difference. Senior Liz Denver said that Christmas decorations get her in the Christmas spirit the most; adding, “My house looks like the North Pole around Christmas time.” But I had to take my Christmas lights down because, “They’re a fire hazard, Dylan. You’re going to burn down our house.”
But honestly, just doing little things like this can turn a certified Scrooge McDuck into a candy cane slinging Christmas FIEND. So if Christmas doesn’t feel like it used to this holiday season, try out a few of these festive techniques to boost your holiday morale.
[Photo by Noah Finegan]