I love Christmas. The songs, the food, the general Christmassyness of it all. Yes, I am that person wearing a sparkly Christmas jumper and drinking overpriced Christmas-themed hot chocolate out of a mug shaped like a reindeer. I am an unashamed Christmas-aholic. It’s the one time of the year when everyone makes a real effort to get together, and yes, the presents are the main reason some people actually turn up, but at least you get to see them. We’re all so busy nowadays and everyone keeps in touch via smiley face emojis and meaningless “must meet up soon!” texts. Christmas forces us to actually meet up face to face, and when we do, we remember why we’re friends in the first place. These people we don’t have time to see during the year are still brilliant, and the rekindled friendships will definitely help you through the obligatory Christmas board games with your family.
Decorations are a huge thing in my house – but there are no coordinating baubles and tinsel in sight. Oh no, we go full madcap décor – crazy felt things my sister and I made as kids, knitted woollen snowmen, flashing multi-coloured lights, and a slightly squashed-looking angel for the top of the tree. They may be uncoordinated and probably very weird to an outsider, but they’re ours and they make it Christmas.
It’s the traditions that make it special, but they don’t necessarily have to be traditional. If you’re away from home for Christmas this year, why not create new traditions with your friends? Go to the Christmas markets together, have a Christmas film night, buy matching Christmas jumpers to wear while watching said films, do whatever makes you feel like it’s Christmas! Just because you don’t get to decorate the tree at home, doesn’t mean you can’t do one at your uni house. Yes, you might have missed out on baking biscuits/wrapping presents/drinking mulled wine/whatever you normally do with your family, but that doesn’t mean your Christmas can’t be Christmassy. All you need to do is get a few friends together and stick on some Christmas songs. You’ll be wearing those silly paper hats from the crackers within minutes.
Yes, some parts of Christmas might be less enjoyable. Maybe you don’t get on with your family, perhaps you’ve lost someone, split up with your partner, just really hate mince pies! But the best thing about Christmas is the perspective – it’s the perfect time of year to remember what really counts. Don’t get on with your family? Have Christmas with friends. Remember those you’ve lost with others who loved them, use the money you would have spent on your other half to treat yourself. And swap your mince pies for Christmas cookies. Just remember to share them with those who matter to you.