What does Christmas mean to you?
Months of neverending homework, weeks of preparation for finals and hours of incessant studying have all lead up to the long-awaited half-year benchmark — and, more importantly, Christmas break.
But is this winter vacation simply a student's necessary break from school, a time for students to recover from finals and for seniors to catch up on applications? Or, rather, is Christmas break intended for coming together as a family, cherishing our many blessings and, ultimately, celebrating the birth of Christ? In my opinion, Christmas vacation is meant for all of these.
Christinah Uppal, a freshman at Sutter Union High School, said, "It's really nice to have a break from school and to be able to hang out with friends in a fun environment without having to think about school work. Christmas break really is a good time to think about what we've done this year and to enjoy celebrating Jesus' birthday."
Christmas vacation acts as a relief from the stress of school. It helps students not to get overwhelmed and gives them the opportunity to catch up on any schoolwork or to simply catch up on some sleep.
However, we must not forget why we celebrate Christmas in the first place. Although Christmas is indeed a relaxing getaway from school, it is meant to be a time of appreciating our friends and family.
Lauren Weatherly, a senior at SUHS, said, "The couple of weeks we get off for Christmas break are nice because I am able to relax without doing homework, and I have time to work on scholarship applications. But I really enjoy being able to spend time with my family over the Christmas holidays."
But with Christmas just a day away, in the midst of many chaotic last-minute preparations and shopping trips, many people are overlooking the purpose of even having a Christmas break.
Perhaps each and every one of us should consider what makes Christmas so special to us individually. To some, it is simply the Christmas spirit and the magic of the holidays, and to others, it is solely the superficial gifts they receive on the "big day."
But to me and many other students at SUHS, Christmas encompasses much more. As Thomas Nelson wrote: "It is an occasion for renewing precious friendships. It is an opportunity to reminisce about days gone by. It's a great excuse to eat too much, sing too loudly, and spend more money than we should ... Christmas is a time of awe and reverence and wonder, when the timeless story of Christ's birth is read."
It is sleeping in, not doing homework, standing back and taking a good look at our lives, connecting with family and cherishing everything that we have been blessed with.
Kelsey Bradley is a senior at Sutter Union High School. Her column appears about every sixth week in Education.