How to ‘sleigh’ this holiday season

Ysabelle Punzal, Staff Reporter

Whether celebrating the holidays with a big green tree or a ‘lit’ menorah, basking in the 70-degree California “winter,” dealing with stress pimples, sleep deprivation and the countdown to winter break ticking through our minds, this holiday season is just what we need to wind down and de-stress.

Traditions vary from holiday to holiday, some more festive while others are simpler.

“All of my family … gets together,” junior Miriam Quiroz said. “We have a really big dinner Christmas Eve and then right at midnight, we open our presents.”
Quiroz is very family-oriented and is a big believer in going all out for Christmas.

“We would always throw really big parties and celebrate for days,” Quiroz said.

During the holiday season, often something funny, embarrassing or random happens. In extreme circumstances, the holiday cheer can even become dangerous.

“[One time] My mom almost burnt down our kitchen,” freshman Olivia Meak said. “We lit the menorah and left it on for a few hours to go to my grandparents house and [when] we came back, the little table it was on was on fire because the candle fell down.”

Although the incident almost ruined the holidays, it made for a ‘lit’ story to tell for years to come.

On another account, Quiroz’s story was rather embarrassing.

“I remember when I was little, I was super spoiled and my parents tried to prank me with the iPad thing,” Quiroz said. “It was like [the letter] ‘i’ and a ‘pad’ and I lost my temper and threw the box in front of everyone.”

For many, the most exciting part of the holiday season are the carols. From Jingle Bells to All I Want for Christmas is You, music is what keeps the holidays alive. With controversy over when to start listening to holiday music, many argue that it is never too early to get into the holiday spirit.

“I’ve been listening to the music since September,” senior Simon Montrose said. “[My favorite song is] Underneath the Tree by Kelly Clarkson.”

For Montrose, the excitement comes from the festivities, not the holiday itself.

“I don’t celebrate [Christmas] for the holiday, I celebrate it for the food and the music, and I like the spirit,” Montrose said. “The hype is the fun part.”

Along with music, holiday treats like Starbucks’ peppermint mocha, and jelly donuts are the icing at the top of the cake. It’s a time to stuff oneself with the sweetest of snacks, ones that may not be the healthiest.

“You know the little sugar cookies that you get from the drugstore with the little christmas images on them? They’re like the stupidest things, so bad for you, but I love them so much,” Montrose said. “Those are easily my favorite holiday food.”

Whether it’s the food, the memories, the music or the stories, all of it makes for a great way to spend the holidays. With family and friends by your side, we rejoice in the festivities of the season, excited for what’s to come in the years following.