Christmas over the years

How has America’s favorite holiday changed?

Julia Hemingway, Staff Writer

As soon as the air gets colder all people seem to talk about is Christmas and holiday excitement.

Christmas time is full of gifts, family, and many other traditions. Many people like to go caroling, sledding and participate in other normal holiday cheer traditions. But how have the holidays changed over time?

In the past, instead of browsing the internet for presents, before Christmas, kids would wait excitedly by the mailbox for toy catalogs to arrive. Then everyone would gather around and circle things they might want to get.

The past honestly seemed much more family oriented, simple and less about gifts or materialistic things. As my grandpa says, “Those were the good old days.”

Here is a picture of a Sears Christmas catalog.

Before the internet, Christmas shopping consisted of shoving past crowds of people before the shelves ran out of the perfect gifts. Since Amazon and other online shopping sites were created many less people decide to go in-store shopping during the holiday seasons. The only problem with Amazon are items going out of stock.

A typical gift during this time period is Air Pods, perfume or Uggs. But before Santa started gifting kids the newest electronics he gifted kids plain old toys such as dolls or bouncy balls. I did some research and found that the most popular gifts in the 1960’s were records, matchbox cars and Mr. Potato Heads since fancy electronics weren’t invented back then. When televisions were invented and used a lot my mom says that she was only allowed to watch cartoons on the weekends anyways. Even before that, during the Great Depression children would receive fruit in their stockings such as bananas or oranges.

Gifts over the years have drastically changed as have Christmas traditions and holiday activities. My mom says that when she was little all of the people in the neighborhood would meet up and walk door to door around the town singing their hearts out. Now think about the last time you’ve seen a Christmas caroler… I certainly haven’t seen one for a while.

Everything has changed since modern technology. Every single year the day after Christmas there are photos on any social media sight imaginable of smiling families under their trees. My mom makes us stand and smile until she captures what she calls “the perfect picture” But is it really necessary? Personally I don’t think it’s needed to take photos after every minor event. People used to just be able to stay in the moment and appreciate time spent with each other.

I think its time to bring back the real authentic Christmas spirit. Maybe around town we could set up a Christmas song singalong or other fun community events. Christmas can still be modern and still have traditional aspects from the past.