People Who Love Christmas Do These 9 Things — Do You?

Christmas is in the air. Can you smell it? I can! I openly and unabashedly love Christmas. There's something about the way everything comes together — the middle of winter, the lights, the music, the food. I just love it.

And how do I know I love it? Well these 9 signs are a good start.

1. Listen to Christmas Music Early and Often

There is nothing better than Christmas music. Not one single thing. I try to wait until December to listen to it, but some of my Christmas-freak friends listen to it all year round. I will say that nothing gets me into the holiday spirit better, even when I'm stressed or tired, than hearing the music I've heard since childhood.

If you're not sure where to start, there are Christmas playlists all over the Internet. Or you can go through your own music collection and make a playlist for every Christmas mood.

2. Have a Favorite Christmas Movie (or Three!)

I know people who love Elf, people who watch Miracle on 34th Street every year, and people who swear by It's a Wonderful Life. Very few people have the same favorite Christmas movie, but nearly everyone who loves the season has at least one flick they return to every year.

3. Decorate With Meaningful Things

It's easy to find cheap Christmas decorations at Target or Walmart, and everyone needs some of these to fill in the gaps. But people who love Christmas save the best spots for decorations that mean something to them. Whether you're hanging the stockings your mother made you or ornaments celebrating the birth of a child, meaningful decorations help you remember to focus on family and on caring for one another, rather than on aspects of the season that make it more stressful.

4. Have the Perfect White Elephant Gift

No matter who you are or what you do, there's almost always some sort of white elephant gift exchange to attend. These can be as fun or as boring as you make them, and people who love Christmas often spend quite a bit of time and energy searching for the perfect terrible gift to add hilarity to these events. There's something fun and oh-so-Christmassy about bringing the gift that everyone (or no one!) wants. I tend to keep my eyes open year round, but I also know people who haunt thrift stores in the weeks leading up to an exchange, just waiting for someone to donate the perfect gift.

5. Use an Advent Calendar to Count Down the Days

One of the best parts of Christmas is that we look forward to it for so long. We know it's coming, and we get the joy of anticipation as we wait for the big day. When people really love this aspect of Christmas, they often buy an Advent calendar to enhance their sense of waiting. And there are so many options for these! You can get one with a piece of chocolate for each day, or you can make one with an ornament you can add to your tree each day, or you can get one featuring Lego. This year, I'm planning to wrap a Christmas book for my kids to open every day in December.

6. Buy Gifts With Meaning

Whether you like it or not, one of the important parts of Christmas, for most people, is giving and receiving gifts. While trying to get something for everyone and making sure you balance your spending can be hard, many people love Christmas because they get to buy meaningful gifts for everyone.

7. Bake a Favorite Christmas Treat

It's easy to get overwhelmed with cookies, cakes, appetizers, and everything else around the holidays. Many Christmas-lovers, though, have one or two favorite Christmas treats that they bake for themselves and their loved ones during the season. There's something about having that one cookie, the one your mom made for you when you were little, that can make or break the Christmas season.

8. Plan Some Down Time Around the Holiday

When people don't like Christmas, it's often because there's so much to do and so much stress around the holiday. You have to go to parties, get presents, put up decorations, navigate unhealthy food… It's no wonder people get tired out way before the big day even comes.

For this reason, people who adore Christmas often plan down time into the season. Some families go away for a weekend. Others limit their activities to a certain number per week. Do whatever works for you, but you'll enjoy the season more if you're not running around like a crazy person the entire time.

9. Get in Touch With the People They Care About

If you don't want to call your family, for whatever reason, it's okay. You don't have to be with them, or even talk to them, on Christmas. But people who love Christmas do try to get in touch with someone they care about. This can be a friend or a neighbor — anybody, really, with whom you'd like to share a few moments of this special time of year.

Do you love Christmas? What do you do to make it special?

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