Your guide to this holiday season

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Now that we’re in the rush period to get all our preparations done, people tend to panic when trying to create the perfect plan to spend it with family and friends. No matter what holiday you celebrate, don’t fret because this guide will help you make the most of this holiday season before the year ends.


Rockefeller Center:

     Rockefeller Center tree (Rockefeller Center, New York): every year, the Rockefeller tree gets put up around mid November and is lit towards the end of the month or the beginning of December. This year, the 72-feet tall tree is elegantly decorated with multicolored lights. Located in Midtown, Manhattan, the tree is a perfect tourist attraction with beautiful angel statues surrounding the area. It’s in the public domain; thus, it’s free of charge.

Radio City:

Christmas Spectacular (1260 6th Ave, New York): at the famous Radio City Music Hall, you can see the Christmas Spectacular from November 9 through January 1. Watch the rockettes take the stage and perform their dance numbers and stellar high kicks. You can buy tickets online selling for as low as $46 for third-mezzanine seats and as high as $599 for orchestra seats. Senior Ralph Rodriguez, commented, “I went to go see the show a couple of years back, but to this day I still remember how amazing it was. I loved how all the dancers were synchronized with each other.”

5th Avenue Window Displays:

(5th Avenue, New York): take a stroll down the acclaimed 5th avenue to see the wonderful displays. Stores like Bloomingdales, Tiffany & Co, and Macy’s— just to name a few— have made it an annual tradition to extravagantly decorate their window displays. Using these as great backdrops, you can enjoy taking selfies in front of them for perfect pictures to post on your social media.

Union Square Holiday Market:

(40 E 14th St, New York): this internationally known market center has the coolest stands and food stops. There you can find all sorts of unique stores ranging from pop up book shops to antique sellers. You will be able to spend a reasonable amount of money for yourself or others this holiday season while still obtaining that urban shopping experience.

Lighting the World’s Largest Hanukkah Menorahs:

Grand Army Plaza (5th Avenue and W 59th St, Manhattan) or (Eastern Parkway Brooklyn, New York): at both of these locations you can see competitors racing to build their own menorahs. Across the Plaza hotel and at the top of Prospect Park, you can also see a 32 feet high menorah being lit for each of the 8 days of Hanukkah. You can attend the lightings for free, but be aware to check the schedules online so that you can plan the perfect time to go.


Gore Mountain (North Creek, New York): don’t be thrown off by the name because we can assure you that this ski resort is quite the opposite. Only 4 hours away from NYC, this winter retreat offers scenic rides on restored pullman cars and chairlifts. Costs start at $62 for teens and $80 for adults. Prices may vary depending how long your stay is and the date you visit.

Ice skating:

World Ice Arena (Flushing Meadows Corona Park Aquatic center, New York): if you live in Queens, go to this friendly neighborhood rink. With ample space, you will be able to skate without feeling cramped. Reasonable pricing of $7 admission for everyone on weekdays, $10 on weekends, and a $6 skate rental fee.

Build a snowman:

One of the easiest ways you can spend a snowy day is by building a snowman. Create memories by making your own Frosty or Olaf.  


Christmas stockings:

Hanging those colored stockings by the mantle is one of the many traditions that stick around. One can either make them at home with fabrics of their choice and then decorate them, or find them at any department store that sells them with different designs to suit your preference.


Making ornaments is a fun craft to spend doing with loved ones. You can DIY them by buying small clear or white globes and then decorate them using long lasting paint. Finally, you can attach a string in order to hang them up. An alternative would be to buy them from a department store as they may come in a larger quantity. Sophomore Rhea Parikh shared her experience, saying, “All the ornaments we have are little photos of our childhood. This really puts me in a festive mood because it makes me feel happy seeing my family putting them up together.”


To make these wreaths one can go to any craft store and buy them for cheap. Then, you can spray paint them with your festive colors and finally attach small decorations. Of course, you can go online to buy them by looking under the ornament section at any decor website.

Snow globe jar:

To make these decorations you use recyclable clear jars and stuff the bottom with pieces of cotton. Next, you would take a piece of a fern branch and glue it to the cotton to emulate a tree. You can continue adding your own touches to the project until you’re satisfied with the result.

Dreidel wall art:

For those celebrating Hanukkah a creative idea for decorating any empty space is by making these super cute dreidel art hangings using construction paper. Cut the paper into the shape of a dreidel, paint them colorfully, and hang them all over your house.

Star of David:

Being a recognized symbol for Jewish identity, why not display it all around your house?  Take popsicle sticks and paint them blue or yellow and then arrange them into the shape of the star.

Adinkra painting:  

Typically of cloth worn in Western African this popular Kwanzaa tradition is a pattern made up of grid lines and a small hand shaped print in the middle. You can take a white cloth to use as the base, and then use black paint to make the grid lines around the cloth. Any designs can be used as the center symbol as long as it represents you as a person.

Gift Essentials

Finding the right gift can be time consuming and pricey, and you don’t want to make it seem like you left it to the last minute. To help you avoid this crisis we have put together some gift ideas that are cute and not too expensive.

Bath & Body Works Gift Set:

Easy to find under the gift section of the store’s website you can order different sets of body lotions, shampoos, scented candles and have them wrapped in pretty packaging. With prices ranging from $30-$60 you can find the perfect set to match your recipient.

Muji Stationary:

Lately people have been going crazy over pens, notepads, and organizers so why not buy someone a pack of muji items. Known for their finely crafted designs that come in a variety of colors. You can either buy them online or go to the main store located in manhattan.

Holiday Mugs:

This gift is a more creative one, you can take any blank mug and bring it to a photo studio at your local mall. There, you can ask them to personalize your mug with your own design or picture. That way, you’ll be able to give your loved one a gift that they can use frequently.

Movie tickets:

Buying someone tickets to a movie they’ve been dying to see can be the perfect surprise. You can go with them and enjoy it together, this gift will demonstrate how well you know the person, and they will be touched that you listened.

Food and Drinks

Being home for the holidays means that you will be looking forward to eating some delicious foods. If you haven’t gotten an idea of what to make or buy look no further because we have provided a list of meals and drinks that will fill you up.

Smoked Ham:

This tasty meal is the perfect centerpiece at any dinner table. They are found in the meat section of the grocery store and come in a variety of flavors including honey glazed.

Gingerbread house: 

On TV, you may have seen cooking shows make those cool looking gingerbread houses. You can customize a house to your liking and wow your friends. Bakeries may sell them or you can look up a catering service and place an order.

Mashed potato with cranberry sauce:

This dish is a great addition to a festive gathering. The richness of the mashed potatoes goes hand in hand with the sweetness of the cranberries.

Christmas pudding:

This traditional Christmas UK dessert takes the form of a dome shaped cake with a creamy filling of your choice. One doesn’t have to be British to enjoy it.


Also known as potato pancakes, these are commonly served during Hanukkah. Flavoring them with different seasonings allows for a delicious experience.  

Black eyed peas and rice: 

As a popular recipe for Kwanzaa festivities, this dish is not only very filling and appetizing, but is also a delight to make with the family.


This classic drink made with rich sweetened milk and egg whites is always seen at beverage stands during the holidays. Get it at any grocery store during this time.  

Pumpkin spice latté:

You may have heard of this famous drink and its delicious taste. Find it at your local Starbucks, but hurry – it’s only available for a limited amount of time.

Peppermint mocha:

Another one of Starbucks’ signature drinks containing mocha sauce and peppermint syrup. Similar to the pumpkin spice latté, this beverage is only available for a limited time.

Hot chocolate: 

This simple but hot drink is great for the cold weather. It can be easily made at home and you can add different toppings. Whether it be cinnamon or marshmallows, there is no doubt it will come out tasting amazing. Senior Ana Soriano stated, “I love drinking hot chocolate during the holidays because it makes me feel warm and cozy.”


Cuddling up by the fireplace is one way to relax during a snow day, but why not make it even better by watching some classic movies that will lift your spirits?

Home alone (1990)

Elf (2003)

How the Grinch Stole Christmas! (1966)

The Polar Express (2004)

A Christmas Carol (2009)

Frosty the Snowman (1969)

A Charlie Brown Christmas (1965)

Gremlins (1984)

Santa Claus Is Comin’ to Town (1970)

Batman Returns (1992) “Even though Batman Returns isn’t one of your typical Christmas movies, it’s one I can watch with my family because it’s something we all enjoy. It’s a way of bringing everyone together.” – Freshman Lynda Irizarry

Love Actually (2003)

Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer (1964)

The Santa Clause (1994)

It’s a Wonderful Life (1946)

An American Tail (1986)

Full-Court Miracle (2003)

The Black Candle (2008)

A Rugrats Kwanzaa Special (2001)

Music Playlist

Listening to good music can have you instantly feeling holly and jolly. For your enjoyment, we comprised a list of songs that will do just that. Junior Ashautae Munroe said, “Honestly, all of these songs are so good. They set the mood for the holidays and I know that I’m going to be playing them nonstop”.

Michael Bublé- “Santa Claus Is Comin’ To Town

Idina Menzel & Michael Bublé- “Baby It’s Cold Outside

Wham!- “Last Christmas

Eartha Kitt- “Santa Baby

Mariah Carey- “All I Want for Christmas Is You

Ariana Grande- “Santa Tell Me”        

Bobby Helms- “Jingle Bell Rock

Frank Sinatra- “A Holly Jolly Christmas

Dean Martin- “Let It Snow!

Glee- “Oh Hanukkah”

Destiny’s Child- “8 Days of Christmas

Bing Crosby & The Andrews Sisters-“The Twelve Days of Christmas

The Jackson 5- “I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus