Tuesday, December 06, 2011

christmas cheer guide

Even during the Christmas season, we don't always feel so cheery and filled with the holiday spirit. Maybe it was a bad day at work, winter traffic, other people being stupid, or crowded shopping mall parking lots that bring you out of the Christmas glow. Or maybe your life is just a little crazy and you're finding it a little hard to get into the spirit. If any of this applies to you this season, here are my surefire ways to get into (or back into) the holiday spirit.

1- A cup of Cheer.

red cup for the win
Even if Starbucks isn't your thing- sitting down with a nice warm cup of your favourite winter coffee, tea, or warm beverage is a nice break from all the craziness of the holidays. Throw on some music and just enjoy a few minutes by yourself or with someone you like to spend time with. Just moved to Liberia and aren't sure about drinking a warm beverage on a warm day? Crank up the A/C, put on a Christmas sweater, and enjoy the beverage for a few minutes. Then resume your pool sitting and sunning.

2- A Christmas Tree.
a very philly christmas
Even if I don't have one at home, sitting near a Christmas tree and looking at the decorations and the lights always puts me in the Christmas spirit. They're so shiny and pretty and it is hard not to feel happy when you're sitting in the glow of the tree (and if you're lucky, smelling pine!). Whether it is a tree as a part of the mall's Santa display or a tree in a good friend's living room, it always puts a smile on my face (even one that looks like this). Can't find a tree to look at in person? Open a bottle of Pine Sol, put on some Christmas music, and google image search "Christmas Tree." Then try not to spill the Sol as you sniff it.

3- A Christmas Movie
Can I refill your egg nog for you? Get you something to eat? Drive you out to the middle of nowhere and leave you for dead?
Whether you're an Elf, National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation, Home Alone, Die Hard, or Love Actually fan, a Christmas movie is ideal for Christmas cheer. The soundtracks are full of Christmas music, the sets are gloriously cheery, and in general, things work out in the end. They are feel-good movies that make you feel all warm and cuddly inside. Even Bad Santa makes you feel good for parts of it. So find a movie, grab some popcorn, and let the cheer overtake you. May I recommend Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer? Just make sure you watch the whole way through- it is a bit of a downer if you just watch the part where society bullies the characters who are different.

4- Holidays on Ice.

No, I don't mean some sort of Disney ice capades holiday show.  If you aren't familiar with David Sedaris, you should really become familiar with him. His short stories are pithy, smart, and hilarious. Especially the Christmas ones. While I'm sure reading the book is quite nice, I recommend listening to the audio version of Holidays on Ice. He narrates the audiobook and the way he tells his own stories is practically perfect in every way. If nothing else, these will make you laugh and will make you wonder what the heck the Dutch were up to.

5- Booze it up.
cause of and solution to all life's problems
If all else fails, spike your coffee, make your egg nog a double, drink gin right out of the bottle...whatever your style, booze it up good. If it doesn't put a little cheer in your step, just drink more and you'll forget why you needed cheer in the first place. This is actually probably the best option if life has beaten that holiday spirit right out of you, but just for the sake of your health, try numbers 1 through 4 before resorting to this one.

What would be in your Christmas cheer guide?


Rebecca said...

Definitely PC Candy Cane Crackle Ice cream.....I'm not going to tell you the magic number of tubs I've already eaten this year :)

Christmas Lights: putting up my own decorations as well as looking at others. Here in Orleans, one street, Taffy Lane, always has the best lights around.

Christmas Food to go along with Christmas Spirit: YUM

Yay for being able to 'booze it up' and actually being able to have a (small) glass on wine at Christmas...woohoo!!

Toronto Girl West said...

I have to confess I'm finding it hard to get in the spirit this year. Mostly because we just came from our vacation and well because we're moving like basically right after Christmas. So that makes me not want to haul all the decorations out when they're organized so well! lol

So I think we've decided we'll celebrate Christmas a month late. Like we're Orthodox or something! :oP

Laura said...

I love love love David Sedaris. There are parts of his book "Naked" that I can't read again as I laughed so hard I couldn't breathe.
We put our tree up and I was surprised that I actually am enjoying the season this year. I have been kind of grinchy the last few. Just changed my attitude I guess.

Samantha Angela said...

Eating cookies, feeling bloated, working out on boxing day to make up for a months worth of over-eating.

Marlene said...

Good list here - definitely partaking frequently!

Thanks for that Holidays on Ice recommendation. That might make a decent gift...

janelle c. said...

it's like you wrote this for me! i've been a humbug regarding the holidays this year, but i think i'll try out a few of these suggestions. :D

Amber (Girl with the red hair) said...

We aren't decorating at home this year since we won't be there so it's been hard to get in the spirit of the holiday. I've been listening to holiday music while working and it helps :)

Vanessa @ Gourmet Runner said...

Great ideas! The red cups from Starbucks always get me in the spirit, as do candy canes!

Nicole @ "Haute Runner" said...

I could use a Starbucks red cup right now... now to decide what to fill it with!

I love Christmas trees! You can't be grumpy around one!

I need to watch some Christmas movies. Love Actually and It's a Wonderful Life are my favourite!

lu said...

can you believe that i have started drinking hot coffee by the pool and even on the beach?! sometimes, i order it iced, but they generally just dump ice into a hot coffee and serve it luke warm, so i just go with the heat!

and i had never thought of listening to david sedaris, but that makes perfect sense. i bet his holiday stories are as hilarious as his others.

i am not decorating this year as i won't be around to enjoy it (and can't be bothered to spend the money on expensive, imported christmas decorations), but i DID see fake christmas trees for sale in downtown monrovia, which made me laugh out loud. i will try and get a snap of them the next time i am out.

danhall1984 said...

I love these ideas.

I really love listening to Stuart McLean's cd A vinyl Cafe Christmas. Hilarious holiday short stories!

healthy ashley said...

I appreciate this guide very much- especially #5 of course :)