As little kids, we see the world through a different, more magical lens – especially around the holidays. The Christmas lights shine a little brighter, the snow sparkles a little more, and the cookies smell a little stronger.
As we get older, it is easy to miss the holiday magic. The snow is suddenly colder and many of us don’t rush out to build a snowman anymore. Christmas morning doesn’t keep us awake the night before from excitement. Finals take over the joy of the holiday season and instead of watching a Christmas movie, we stay up all night reading our notes from class.
It’s easy to get lost in the motions of life, forgetting to make an effort to get into the holiday spirit.
If you expect the holiday spirit to rush through your body the second it turns Dec. 1, I hate to be the one to tell you that this isn’t a Hallmark movie. That does not mean all hope is lost, though.
Hopefully, this guide will help you find the lost holiday spirit.
First and most important, romanticize every aspect of the next month before Christmas, Hanukkah and all other holidays that come and go.
What was always the most important part of a perfect Christmas morning? Snow.
Although it hasn’t snowed much here in Indiana, take every chance to enjoy the cold weather. Wear a cozy sweater or a big puffy coat. Watch the snow fall through your window from the comfort of a blanket. To make it even cozier, light a candle that smells like peppermint or some pine trees, so the aroma fills the room.
What’s your favorite holiday tradition? Ice skating? Cookie making? Gingerbread houses?
Grab your roommates and drive up to Carmel for a fun night of ice skating at The Ice at Carter Green. Gather your friends for a night of cookie making and decorating. Make some sugar cookies shaped like gingerbread men or snowflakes and decorate them however your heart desires. Run to Target and grab a small gingerbread village making kit and spend the evening with your roommates or friends getting into the holiday spirit.
What was your favorite movie to watch around the holidays?
Cozy up on a Friday night and watch “Elf” or whatever movie reminds you of your childhood. Put on your favorite pajamas and settle in on the couch – maybe even with your freshly baked Christmas cookies!
I think you’re starting to get my point.
There are so many ways to make the holidays feel like you are seeing the world through a little kid's eyes.
If this is your first year away from home and your family, it can be even more difficult. I know personally, it doesn’t feel like Christmas until my brothers and I have spent a night watching “A Christmas Story,” and my mom and I have wasted a day away doing puzzles while Hallmark movies play in the background.
Family is the centerpiece of the holiday season, so being far away can feel isolating. Take the time to do things that remind you of home. I am a strong believer that it makes finals season a little less stressful and the holiday season a lot more enjoyable.
It may not happen as naturally as it used to when we were young. But taking a few extra moments and incorporating a few small details might just help you start to see the magic of the holiday seasons come back.
Gentry Keener (she/her) is a sophomore studying journalism and political science.