This year my mom texted me saying she had read something that said that people who decorate early for the holidays are generally happier people. In my apartment, we really took that statistic to heart. In an apartment where half of us celebrate Christmas and half celebrate Hanukkah, we have a lot of December celebrations to decorate for. Decorating the apartment doesn’t need to be extravagant, a lot of it can be simply done with some paper and pens.
Since practically the very beginning of living in this apartment, we have always kept a banner hanging over the kitchen celebrating whatever holiday is most current. At first it was a birthday, then Halloween and Thanksgiving and now Christmas/Hanukkah. Little things like this (literally letters cut out from paper strung together on a string and hung up) really make the place feel more personal and homey. Plus it makes for something fun to do with the roommates on a break from school work.
While our previous decorations for other holidays have been mostly just the banner, we decided to get more creative for the December holiday season. Our living room is home to three big posters over our couch and each one has now been holiday-ified in its own way. Our Obama Hope poster now features a Santa Obama complete with beard and hat, our poster with the michelin man is now holding a menorah and dreidel, and our bridge has some festive lights. Again, all this happy festive decor requires is a bit of paper, some pens and some scissors.
Of course, we also have lights hung up to celebrate the season, and different holiday snacks cycle through the pantry, but the final big holiday spirit item is our tree, all decorated with ornaments and lights and one giant star. This may seem a little excessive for college students in a tiny apartment, but the statistic! This is supposed to make us happier in the long run… and I honestly think that it does. Our tree, along with the rest of our happy holiday decorations, bring a smile to my face every single morning. I encourage you, no matter what holidays you celebrate, put something festive up this holiday season. It just might make you happier.