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As we grow older and our lives become cluttered with new tasks and more hours are devoted to clubs, sports and homework each night, it is easy for the holidays to simply pass us by. But it is more important than ever to keep that holiday spirit. Sometimes this can be a little tricky, but there are a few things that, for me, always bring Christmas alive once again.

Decorations: What better way to enjoy the holiday season than with decorations? Simply garnishing the tree with tinsel and lights is not enough – bringing on the Christmas spirit requires decking out the whole house. Bring out those old dusty boxes from the basement, set out those little snowmen salt shakers and string up those Christmas lights wherever you can. After all, the only way to drink in the season is to have it all around you.

Music: Of course, this embellishing process must be accompanied by the proper musical selections – Christmas music is one of the best ways to get into that holiday mood. Tchaikovsky’s rich Nutcracker symphonies never get old. Whether it’s Justin Bieber or Bing Crosby, Christmas music must be included in your season in some form – and never be afraid to belt out those classic Christmas carols, even if only in the shower.

Movies: Almost as important as a collection of festive songs is the annual viewing of Christmas movies. A cold and snowy winter night is the perfect chance to fill a mug with eggnog, grab some peppermint ice cream and sit down for a holiday show. Never can you feel quite so warm inside as when you watch those same, simple Christmas films of your childhood. And don’t forget about the classics like “White Christmas” and “It’s a Wonderful Life” because they can never be viewed too many times.

Baking: This lovely season would simply not be complete without all the corresponding culinary activities. Even though you no longer have the task of baking cookies for Santa, throwing on an apron and setting to work on those same cutout cookies can be one of the best ways to put yourself in a Christmas mood. And, of course, once the oven is off and the flour and frosting spots the kitchen table and floor, there is always the reward of eating those angel- and tree-shaped cutouts that makes it all worthwhile.

Then, as the snow starts falling outside the window, you will not even mind because you have all the comforts of Christmas around you. Just because we’re teenagers doesn’t mean we have to forget our favorite childhood holiday.

Monica Wild is a sophomore at Sacred Heart Academy.