Avoiding Hibernation: Ways to Spend Your Holiday Break


Emma Dessau, Reporter

A beautiful break awaits you. You walk out of finals December 19 with two full weeks free of homework, papers, quizzes and tests. While it may be tempting to curl into your best tie-blanket and slumber through New Years, with a little planning and some self control, you can make this your best Christmas break ever.

Whether you are looking for something to do at home or out of the house, there are plenty of ways to spend your time. For the purpose of organization, we’ve thrown together three categories: what to eat, what to see, and what to do over break.

What to Eat: The Christmas season is the perfect time to bust out some baked goods. Gingerbread houses, yuletide logs, and traditional Christmas cookies are just one preheated oven away. But if baked goods aren’t your cup of tea, make sure to taste the holiday cheer in other ways–perhaps in the form of peppermint ice cream or with a seasonal drink at Starbucks.

What to See: There is so much to see during the holidays over break.If you’re looking for a more laid back experience, check out Vasona Lake Country Park’s annual “Fantasy of Lights.” Here you can enjoy elaborate displays of Christmas lights from the comfort of your car!

For an artsy Christmas experience, purchase tickets to San Jose Ballet’s annual performance of The Nutcracker. The performances all take place atSan Jose Center for the Performing Arts and runs through December 28th. http://www.balletsj.org/nutcracker.html

As always, the holidays bring in tons of new movies in the theatres, so if a big bag of popcorn and a box of Junior Mints sounds like a party, check out Fandango.com for movie times. There is a movie for every taste coming out. Wild, starring Reese Witherspoon, comes out December 5th. The next installment in the Hobbit trilogy, premieres December 17th. If you and/or your guy is a Lord of the Rings fan, this might make the perfect film for a date night. And if you’re into outrageous, bro-humor comedies, check out The Interview with Seth Rogen and James Franco which opens Christmas day.

Not a fan of the public world? Netflix has your back. Come January 1st, the entire series of “Friends” joins “Parks and Rec,” “the Office,” and other beloved sitcoms on Netflix for hours of back to back joy.

What to Do: When it comes to what you should do this break, there are several approaches. Get into the Holiday Spirit by ice skating downtown or some good ole’ fashioned Christmas caroling. But if there’s one thing to see in San Jose,  it’s Christmas in the Park. Experience the joy of Christmas in the heart of downtown San Jose with 40 musical displays, more than 500 decorated Christmas trees (including one by our very own NAHS club!), and entertainment ranging from live shows to movie nights featuring classics like “Miracle on 34th Street” to new favorites like “Frozen.”  If you’re looking for some inspiration for some practical activities, consider deleting your unneeded emails or throwing away all useless papers for school. When you do begrudgingly find yourself back in school come January, you’re sure to feel a lot better to leave first semester completely  behind you.