The holiday season is arguably the best time of the year. There are certain things we forget the importance of in the humdrum of our normal activity. Christmastime is when all the good in life is dumped onto our to-do lists. We are reminded to focus on doing things like spending time with our family and taking a homework break to decorate cookies.
Unfortunately for the Chadwick student, this time of year also tends to be the busiest and most stressful. For the Chadwick senior, in addition to the normal workload, we have the daunting January 1 deadline on our horizon. All of this business has the potential to shift us out of the Christmas spirit. We may find ourselves not decorating our tree because we’re studying eighteen IDs for tomorrow’s history test. We may accidently miss out on making this year’s gingerbread house because we were toiling over a math problem.
Now, I don’t know how to exactly solve this dilemma. I am in the same boat as everyone else and have already found myself disregarding my own Christmas spirit because of homework. However, I have made myself a list. This is a bucket list of things to do to get into the Christmas spirit, and stay in the Christmas spirit for the rest of the season. In hopes of spreading the joy of Christmas to the rest of Chadwick, I have decided to share this list with you.
1. Participate in Stanton Calendar. I am a somewhat biased proponent of this activity, but it actually does achieve Christmas spirit. Forcing yourself to do one task a day makes sure you get a small dose of holiday joy no matter what. Even if you don’t really feel like going out in the cold and putting reindeer antlers on your car, just do it anyways.
2. Go Christmas caroling. Now, this task has a bit of potential awkwardness attached to it. It’s easy to say how fun Christmas caroling would be, but the idea of ringing someone’s doorbell and singing to them for a prolonged period of time reeks of discomfort. I encourage you to play the optimist here. If you get the right group of friends (preferably somewhat tone deficient), knock on the doors you know will be answered, and keep the event nice and short, a good time is guaranteed. If nothing else, this will initiate an incomparable Christmas mood granted only to those who are willing to make some sacrifices.
3. Take a stroll around your neighborhood to look at the lights. Christmas lights serve as a constant reminder to the time of year. So take a break from the desk life and enjoy the toil of your fellow neighbors.
4. Cuddle up with hot chocolate and watch a Christmas movie. Whether it be Elf, Polar Express, or The Grinch,  there are too many classic holiday films to count. Take advantage of the month of December when the themes of these fabulous films are most prevalent.
5. Take part in every family tradition. We tend to brush off family traditions as unimportant. The same ornaments are put on the tree every year, the art of cookie decorating has been perfected, and it’s no secret what Christmas album will be playing throughout the house. Even though these traditions have all become monotonous, what would the holidays be without them? Christmastime would be indistinct and melded into the normality of the other eleven months. Seniors especially, this could be the last time we participate in some of these traditions. Cherish them and don’t miss out on a single one.
6. Listen to Christmas music all day, every day. This one requires little to no effort. Put on those favorite Christmas tunes all day long. The goal is to have your mind become consumed with the joy of Christmas which requires constant brain stimulation to support the holiday season.
7. Celebrate Hanukkah. Celebrating a holiday other than Christmas seems a bit counter-intuitive when the ultimate goal here is Christmas spirit. However, try it out. Making a guest appearance to light the Menorah not only allows someone else to share their Hanukkah spirit with you, but it simultaneously elevates your own holiday mood.
8. Put some decorations up in your room. Decorations most likely never cross the threshold of your personal space. Break the norm this year, and put a little tree in your room or hang some tinsel from your shelves. This will be a constant reminder of the time of year.
9. Don’t pass up any holiday-time food. Living in Southern California, we don’t have the luxury of cold weather which allows the covering up of holiday bulge. It’s tempting to pass up that peppermint bark to watch the waistline. I’m here to say don’t say no to that glass of egg nog. It’s once a year, so just live it up.
10. Sit around the Roessler non-demonational-holiday-tree. We all have the privilege of one extra holiday tree in our lives. This one just happens to be giant and smells exactly what Christmas should smell like. Take that extra minute to admire its beauty. Appreciating this tree will ensure the Christmas spirit will reach you even during the school day.

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