All I Want for Christmas is Food and Traditions

by Aidan Millar-White

Christmas is coming! It’s the season of giving and that warm, holiday feeling. Everyone has different holiday traditions that they enjoy this season. That may range from simple family get-togethers and baking cookies to family trips or parades. For the students at Minarets, Christmas is a time for family, friends, and relaxing.

Sophomore Bren Barnes says, “My family has a tradition of honoring the origin of Christmas, the pagan holiday Yule, by decorating a small Christmas tree outside with popcorn and peanuts for the birds and animals.”

Sophomore Grace Noonkester spoke about how she will, “[Turn] on the radio in the car ride to buy a Christmas tree and my dad and I will try to guess what the first Christmas song we hear will be,” as well as how, “my family and I go to Christmas Tree Lane in Fresno and see all the lights,” and “my mom and I make over the top hot chocolate and we drink it while watching movies.”

Holidays like Christmas, Yule, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, and others that occur this time of year have one thing in common: they all value spending time together and celebrating the holidays. A part of the holidays that everybody loves is the food.

Sophomore Kaleia Dey said her favorite holiday tradition is “Making gingerbread houses, baking cookies, making fudge, and drinking hot cocoa [on] Christmas Eve.”

Food is a huge part of any holiday season, so here are some timeless recipes for the whole family! Everyone loves some:

That’s just scratching the surface of the food world during the holidays, though. Just to get the brain train going. There are so many more recipes to choose from. Whether it’s online, in an everyday cookbook, or even grandma’s secret cookbook with all of her famous recipes, the Christmas day feast is bound to be amazing with all of these classic dishes!

And what’s even better than food? Traditions!

“My family does a white elephant gift exchange and we do an advent calendar every year,” said Junior Kat Havens of her family’s tradition.

If any new (or even old) families need help coming up with new traditions to start, this is the place to find them. There are annual favorites like getting a real tree to decorate, getting matching holiday PJ's, watching classic holiday movies, and baking festive cookies. There are also a little older traditions like stringing popcorn garland and decorating your tree with it, like Barnes’ family does, or building your own Christmas village. If traveling is more someone’s style, they could plan a fun trip to a Christmas town. One could host a White Elephant gift exchange or Secret Santa, they could dress up their pups for the chilly weather, do an advent calendar, or wrap presents to put under the tree.

There are so many fun things to do this holiday season! Hopefully, this has sparked some great ideas for family (whether big or small, blood or chosen) activities. From the students here at Minarets Press, we hope you all have a wonderful Winter Break, and Happy Holidays!

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