Emily Little

Reason for the season

EMILY LITTLE This time of year is by far my favorite. I love the holiday season with Thanksgiving turkeys, Christmas decorations, and of course, Christmas music. However, the one thing I don't love about this time of year is the weather. Living in Florida my entire life has definitely gotten me accustomed to the heat. I have only seen snow once in my life, and personally I'd rather be at the beach. When November finally rolls around each year, I know the cold weather is near. As soon as the temperature drops below 75 degrees, I tend to dramatically insist that it's freezing. I bundle up in sweaters, scarves, and boots while other people still brave shorts and T-shirts. When the first cold front blows through each year, I know my 85-degree summer weather is coming to an end.
Although the cold weather can sometimes get me down, winter is by far my favorite season. I love winter holidays, from Thanksgiving, to Christmas, to New Years. I love spending time with my family, decorating the house, and putting up the Christmas tree. Lately, it seems as though the public and the media are not stopping to appreciate these holidays, however. Instead of waiting for the usual Black Friday pandemonium, stores are starting their sales on Thanksgiving Day. Rather than spending the day cooking, watching football and spending time with family, the day is becoming yet another materialistic holiday. In my house, Thanksgiving has always been a day to look forward to. Each year, I can't wait to chow down on stuffing, mashed potatoes, rolls and turkey. One of my favorite parts of the day is watching the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade every year, without fail. As much as I love celebrating this holiday, it is hard to imagine that others would devote the day simply to shopping. Not only are people getting distracted from the true meaning of the Thanksgiving holiday, but also forgetting about it entirely. This year, it seems as though stores are already overloaded in red and green Christmas décor, skipping over Thanksgiving entirely. People are trying to rush through the holidays to get to Christmas because they can't wait to get materialistic gifts. Now don't get me wrong, I love receiving presents, but that doesn't mean I feel we should forget the true meaning of Christmas. The "tradition" in my house has always been Christmas decorations won't go up and Christmas music won't be played until the day after Thanksgiving. However, once Thanksgiving is over, everything is fair game. We hang up lights, put up the Christmas tree, start blaring Jingle Bells, and watch Elf and The Year Without A Santa Claus. Regardless of the holiday, this time of year puts me in a constant good mood. Regardless of the bad weather or people straying from the real meaning of holidays, I love the holiday season. Regardless of the material connotations associated with holidays recently, I think it's extremely important to remember what they're really about. Sometimes, I must remind myself of this as I write out a Christmas list or head for the most expensive Christmas decorations. I should be beyond grateful for what I have, and the holidays are a perfect time to show this thankfulness. I get to spend the holidays with my family and have nice meals, something many others do not have. Holidays are about spending time with your loved ones and giving back, not for worrying about materialistic gifts and presents.