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RetroJunk Classic: The 90s Holiday Trilogy: Christmas

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Here we are folks... the final part of the trilogy and it's quite the big one. Fall and its colors are replaced with white and green as winter comes in and we see red and green to blue and silver everywhere. We hear songs of a Holly Jolly Christmas and chestnuts roasting over an open fire. Santa Claus is coming to town so we know it's Christmas time. Let's get looking at Christmas traditions with a call back to the Thanksgiving article. But on a bigger scale.

Decorating the house

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Even though the tree is decorated, that doesn't mean the house is ready for the holiday. So time to decorate and get the whole house in full swing. Inside and out, houses are decorated with lights, figures, props, poinsettias and sometimes more than one Christmas tree. A nice way to start off the season. Now let's go from making the house look a lot like Christmas to the house smelling and tasting like Christmas.

Christmas Baking

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Now that we got the look of the Christmas holiday, time to make it smell like Christmas. Things like baking Christmas cookies to Chex Mix and candy. It was always nice to come home from school to the smell of cookies baking in the oven as some sat cooling off and ready to be decorated. Eating a couple cookies with frosting was a nice thing to do after school or on a snow day around Christmas. These types of things set the stage for a family tradition that is shared far and wide.

The Family Christmas Party

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Yes a tradition that is both fun and at times unbearable for some, it's the family Christmas party. As a kid it was always fun to see family with hopes of getting early presents beyond what was under the tree. It usually was the adults who would be sitting down talking and the kids would be running around getting cookies and other treats and playing with their new toys. Growing up this never changed. But now we are the adults and not the kids and we are there to spend time with family that we may not see again for quite some time. It is fun any way you look at it. Though it isn't a family gathering without a Christmas dinner. Honey glazed ham, mashed sweet potatoes with marshmallow topping, green beans, and to top it off... apple pie with a scoop of ice cream and whipped cream. All this along with what the rest of the family would bring. After the party and dinner we would see what was on TV.

Christmas Specials

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These specials play throughout December until Christmas and are repeated at least 3 times a day. Yet even now we still love them. From "It's a Merry Christmas Charlie Brown" to "The Santa Experience" from Rugrats, if the lights or the parties didn't get you in the Christmas spirit, the specials will. Short, sweet, and to the point and getting the message across in less time than full length movies. My personal favorites are "The Santa Experience" from Rugrats and the "Hey Arnold Christmas Special". Those are just a couple outside of the classic Rankin Bass specials, most of which are good. But if TV specials aren't your thing there are always Christmas movies. From timeless classics like "It's a Wonderful Life" to "A Christmas Story" and "The Muppets Christmas Carol". Christmas movies are like longer Christmas specials, but they look nicer and are able to give characters a bit more personality. However, most still have the heart and still manage to be guilty pleasures. But wait... since this is a '90s holiday article I almost forgot something that was a big deal for us as kids in those days.

Christmas Break

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As kids this was our mini Summer Break! A week or two off, in some cases, to enjoy the snow and play with what you got for Christmas. Though like with Summer Break, the last day is free day. All the classes have their own Christmas party, watching Christmas movies and drinking punch and eating festive cookies and having fun. Gym class would have mats set up as forts and we would play a version of dodge ball with the theme of winter. It was usually a fun time and a great way to kick off the weekend and start the new year.

Well that caps off our Trilogy of '90s holidays. I hope you enjoyed it as much as I did. Have a Merry Christmas and a Festivus for the rest of us and have a happy new year! And remember to Live Life and Live Nostalgic.

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Dalek227 Posted on Dec 19, 2018 at 05:39 AM

That was the best, that last day of gradeschool before the holidays. I think we even had a small party in Jr high as well. Gradeschool was the best though. Like you said, eating treats, drinking punch and watching movies. Maybe exchanging Secret Santa gifts or getting a small treat from the teacher before you get on the bus and look forward to opening presents in a few days. Back then I swear Christmas break felt much longer.

Vaporman87 Posted on Nov 27, 2018 at 06:37 PM

Great breakdown of a typical family Christmas in the '90s. Great for getting into the spirit of things. Thanks TDitH!

Benjanime Posted on Nov 27, 2018 at 12:01 AM

there was actually a brief point in time when my mom actually baked christmas cookies, including the gingerbread man made for the tree, but she stopped when she saw that i attempted to eat that same gingerbread man, lol.

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