By Zara D. Garcia-Alvarez / @ZaraAlexis
My favourite month of the year is finally here!
The air is brisker when I go our for a walk, festive wreaths and lights start to adorn the houses, and Santa is seen at the mall. My children put a lot of thought to their Christmas lists and letters to Santa, while attempting to be extra polite to avoid getting on the Naughty List.
There are dinner parties, office parties, and Kris Kringle exchanges. There’s the pine tree and its ornaments, making them, and putting them up. Endless photographs, discount deals, and Christmas carols. Baking, cooking, and gift wrap.
There’s snow and ice skating. Hot chocolate at the city’s parade. There’s even a little charity if you’re not Scrooge.
While there is stress and so many other negative things associated with December and the Christmas season like storms, long line-ups, traffic jams, and a traditional holiday that can sometimes become too commercialized—there really is so much to look forward to and be grateful for.
Because really, Christmas is, after all, a commemorative holiday to honour the birth of Christ and act in response to a spirit of giving. Whether you’re a practicing Christian or not, the spirit of giving is and should be the center and reason for such festivities. Though many may not celebrate Christmas, but have their own traditional and/or religious practices to celebrate the holidays, the spirit of giving and joy is readily associated with it!
I’m personally looking forward to fulfilling my own family tradition by dressing up, attending a church service, and then gathering together with the Garcia-Clan for prayer, blessing, a hearty dinner, photographs, carols around the tree, and the much-awaited arrival of Santa for the distribution of gifts!
But, December is more than a countdown to a holiday. December is the opportunity to re-focus energies on slowing down, reflecting on the past year, and looking towards the future. It’s also an opportunity to make the most of the time you have left for the remaining year, re-prioritize, and live out what’s significant to you in a personal and valuable way.
For me, it’s an opportunity to:
- build a gingerbread house with my kids because it’s creative, messy, and fun!
- It’s an opportunity to build a snowman in my backyard instead of complaining about shovelling the snow.
- It’s an opportunity to wear ugly Christmas sweaters because that’s what they’re there for.
- It’s an opportunity to write out a personal letter or Christmas card to those I don’t normally get a chance to see everyday, but have thought about.
- It’s an opportunity to volunteer at a food bank or soup kitchen or drop extra change in the Salvation Army bucket to help those who are in need because I can.
- It’s also an opportunity to sit back, enjoy those fuzzy slippers that I received last year, sip a great cup of hot cocoa, and read a good book—without worrying whether I have to review it or not!
It’s the beginning of December, my wonderful bibliotaphes! Let’s enjoy all it has to offer and enjoy it together! Here’s hoping you have a happy, festive, and meaningful December!
What are your plans this December?
What do you love most about this month?
How do you celebrate the Christmas season?