The Observer is a Student-run, daily print & online newspaper serving Notre Dame & Saint Mary's. Learn more about us.



Getting into the spirit

Nikki Taylor | Friday, December 7, 2007

Ah, the holiday season. With the fresh layer of snow on the ground and the knowledge that break is just around the corner, my festive mood keeps rising and is on the verge of going off the charts.

For some unexplainable reason, I have more Christmas spirit this year than I have had in a long time. I was pondering this thought over some classic Christmas music the other day when my roommate pointed out to me that all the Christmas carols seem to be much more poignant to her this year now that she is away from home.

It was a light bulb moment. I realized that she is entirely right. As a freshman, this is my first year away from my family during the holiday season. I never before felt a deep connection with Perry Como as he was singing, “There’s No Place Like Home for the Holidays” but now I realize how right he is.

And hearing Frank Sinatra’s version of “Jingle Bells” takes me right to my grandma’s living room on Christmas morning.

I know it seems bizarre, but I think that being away from my family during the beginning of the holiday season is making me more festive. Maybe it is an unconscious effort on my part to compensate for what I am missing at home. My roommates and I have decorated our dorm room and we have been playing Christmas music since before Thanksgiving (an act that I am usually staunchly against).

The Christmas tree in the lobby of Holy Cross Hall fills me with a warm and fuzzy feeling every time I walk in the front door.

Maybe it has something to do with the traditions of Christmas, and knowing that no matter where you are, they won’t change. Every family has its own holiday traditions. Some play football in the snow, or watch the TBS “A Christmas Story” marathon, or have a white elephant gift exchange.

I’m two hours from home, but I know that when I return, everything will decorated just as it has been in years before. I know that Christmas Eve means our family’s wassail party, and Christmas morning will be spent at my grandma’s with a buffet brunch.

I feel like a little kid again with all the Christmas anticipation. It’s only the beginning of December, and I get more anxious every day. Only Christmas changes as you get older. It is no longer all about getting presents from Santa. It now is filled with an air of family and togetherness. The Christmas season at school makes your roommates and friends your family as you decorate together, and it makes you appreciate your real family and the time spent with them on the holiday more.

Christmas truly is a magical time, and I wish all the joys and simple pleasure on the Christmas season to all in the Notre Dame community. Let your Christmas spirit carry you through finals!