Go Homemade For Heartfelt Gifts

Version 2 By: Anna Sobczyk

Years ago, my mom started a tradition where everyone our family has to make a homemade Christmas gift for someone. At Thanksgiving, we draw names to see who has who. I didn’t think much of the tradition when I was younger; it was just something extra I had to do. I eventually saw the value in exchanging something homemade, but moving away from home and starting college made me really appreciate it.

Like any student, I always feel short on time. Making gifts can be so time consuming—yet I’ve found I’m always more excited to gift something I made than something I just went out and bought. Plus, knowing how difficult it can be for me to find the time to sit down and make a gift makes me appreciate receiving one all that much more. Money is replaceable, but time isn’t.

When it comes to homemade gifts, there’s no competition. It’s simply the fact that someone is willing to spend their time on making a gift that makes the receiver feel special. On top of that, homemade gifts don’t have to look or be perfect because regardless, you’re giving something away that’s absolutely unique.

Have a Merry Oregonian Christmas

For all of those students staying in the NW over break like myself, you may be wondering what you can do over winter break. We may not have the Rockefeller tree or the Times Square Ball in Portland, but there are many fun local things to do over the holidays. Here is my list of what to hit up during your month-long break:

Peacock Lane Lights – A fun walk/drive with friends and family while enjoying the beautiful festive lights. (December 15-31st)

ZooLights – Take the Zoo Railway and enjoy the lights used to transform the zoo into a Lite-Brite winter wonderland along with hot chocolate and live music.

The Polar Express (Oregon) –If you’re a fan of the movie you’ll be delighted to know that the Mt.Hood Railroad is home to the Oregonian Polar Express. Sing along to Christmas Carols, enjoy tasty treats, and meet Santa on your way to the North Pole—a.k.a Mt.Hood.

The Grotto Christmas Festival of Lights – You can now enjoy the very illuminated Grotto until December 30th. It is a family event filled with lights, carolers, and choir performances.

For those movie lovers, there are several holiday-themed films out. Arthur Christmas is an entertaining family movie that will bring out the 5 year old in you with its Christmas spirit. The film New Year’s Eve, which seems to have cast every Hollywood actor, had a fun storyline that connected all the characters in cheesy yet touching ending. However, if you’re not down to go anywhere, you can always stay home and watch holiday films on TV, eat sugar cookies, and sip on some eggnog… no judgment.