Give me your presence, not presents

Emma Charles, Reporter

The holidays are right around the corner, and if you’re anything like me, you’ve already started binge watching Christmas movies. Have you ever seen “Love Actually”? If you haven’t, you should; it’s a quality film. If you have, then you know one of the central themes is telling people how you feel and gifting experiences and love rather than material items.
This is what the holidays are all about right? Or at least they should be. I bet you’ve seen all the girls posting on their finsta stories with the question box, asking for responses to “What’s on your Christmas list?” so that they can build up an even bigger Christmas list of things they didn’t even know they needed. This isn’t me throwing shade at anyone specific, but that’s a real Scrooge move right there. Instead of wasting your money on another pair of Steve Madden boots, go out and do something with the people you love. I mean do you really need that many pairs of shoes anyway (however, I dress like I can’t afford anything besides leggings and an oversized sweatshirt, so I might be a little biased)?
Whether your gift list consists of a Gucci belt or just a new pack of socks, that aside, there is real value in spending time with your family and friends this time of year. Something as simple as cutting down a Christmas tree or having dinner with distant relatives can become some of the highlights of your year. I think these little things are sometimes taken for granted.
Hearing stories from when your grandparents were teenagers, practicing family traditions, drinking a glass of wine with your super Italian great-aunt —those are things you won’t always have the luxury of doing.
Not to mention the abundance of wintery activities to do with your friends: go skiing, ice skating, snow tubing, have a bonfire. Isn’t that what getting into the holiday spirit is all about? Go out and make some memories. It’s no coincidence that there aren’t any holiday songs called “All I Want for Christmas is Presents” or “Feliz Tengo Regalos.” It’s all about people and the moments you share with them, not the presents they give you.
So this Christmas (or Hanukkah or Kwanzaa), follow in the footsteps of Mark or Sam or Jamie Bennett and go tell someone how you feel, reach out to old friends, spread the warmth; otherwise it’s going to be a really cold winter. But maybe your Steve Madden boots will keep you warm.