As I write this, there are 11days, 12 hours, 12 minutes and 35 seconds left until Santa departs from the North Pole. Oops, there goes another 20 seconds. While I have passed the age where I wait impatiently for the man with the bag to shimmy down my chimney. I do impatiently count down the days until the holidays begin. I love Christmas, the holidays, the lights but most of all the atmosphere. Even though the temperature drops, the warmth in people's hearts seems to rise steadily. They are constantly th-th-thumping away in anticipation for what the holiday season will bring. Like me, they count down the very seconds until they are reunited with their loved ones--and dread the ensuing barrage of questions. The woes of the world are just a distant memory and the aroma of the holiday meals serve as a welcome buffer against the cold. But whether you countdown to Hanukkah, Kwanza or until the winter season premiere of How to Get Away with Murder airs, lights are on and they are everywhere.

Twinkling like stars in the night, burning brighter as the time draws near. In perfect synchronization, one by one families across the world turn them on. Suddenly making the unpleasant walk to school a bit more bearable, as I'm greeted by fluorescent Rudolphs, makeshift Grinches and blow-up Frosty the Snowmen. Suddenly, the skating rinks look like stained glass windows and every lap around the ice under the elaborate decor makes you feel like Cinderella at the ball. I think that in all the hubbub and the bustling that the commercial side of the holidays bring, we forget what makes Christmas truly special. The music, the snow (fingers crossed because Canadian weather has a mind of its own), the reruns and of course, the people. So, as the we get closer and closer to the special day, let your lights glow brighter and brighter.

~Alexandra XO

P.S. Google's Santa Tracker is a great way to get into the Christmas spirit before Ol' Saint Nick arrives.

P.P.S. Still trying to get into the Christmas Spirit? Click here to read more holiday tales.