What Christmas Means To Me

WARNING: This may be the cheesiest post I have ever written. But these things I’m feeling are real.  Don’t be a grinch, okay? 😉
I’m not usually one of those people who gets excited for Christmas before Thanksgiving even hits.  For some reason, this year I’ve gotten into the spirit early.  I even started Christmas shopping!!!  Every year I say I will start shopping early, but find myself scrambling to shop the week before the 25th.
I had to do my best to keep from starting up the holiday playlist, which you can find on my Spotify.  But with one of my favorite groups coming out with a new Christmas album (cough*98 Degrees*cough), it wasn’t much of a struggle.  Lately, I find myself in winter PJs, sipping hot chocolate while watching cheesy Hallmark movies I tease my sister for watching.
I am dreaming up holiday cookie baking events with my niece and nephew and thinking of a creative letter from Santa to help them believe in magic.  I started practicing my calligraphy skills again, which my niece doesn’t know I have.  Hopefully that’s enough to fool her.
So, what is up with me???
As a kid, I was like this — often opting for Christmas music in October and starting my Christmas list around that time.  But truthfully, I haven’t felt this level of spirit since my mother passed away.  So much of that magic centered around my time with her — shopping and cooking and laughing all set to Christmas music.
Usually, I am stressed with the busy retail season at work when I was a barista along with traveling home to New York to see my family.  So maybe that’s it… now that I have moved back to New York and live with my niece and nephew, the magic is back.  Plus, I am lucky enough to not have that extra work burden.  Sure, I work.  I help out with the kids and with my brother’s company, but my life is filled with so much more fulfillment now.
I have time to write.  I have time to workout.  I have so much time to spend with my loved ones.  For instance, I got to spend a night in the city — which is looking pretty festive already — with my sisters last weekend.  I don’t think the three of us have done something together like that in years.
I am thankful for not what I have lost in life, but for what I have gained.  The simple blessings of family, friends — even if some are far away, heart-warming movies, using creativity to bring back the feeling of youth, and the euphoria that music brings into your life.
A single song can lift your spirits and bring back a memory, all while making new ones.  This year, this is what Christmas means to me… to let simple things fill my heart with happiness, especially during a time in our world when we so easily find bad news anytime we look at our phone.  It’s important to remember the good and embrace it.  I know that’s not easy for everyone, but don’t be afraid to allow yourself to actually feel happiness when it creeps into your soul just because there is suffering elsewhere in the world.  Be mindful and compassionate, but letting it bring you down is not helping the cause.  You can change that negative energy by donating money, toys, or time to a good cause instead.  That’s guaranteed to make yours and someone else’s holiday brighter.
Here is to hoping you all feel the spirit of the season and may God bring peace and light into your heart.
Hugs, Kisses & Stars,
Enjoy my holiday playlist – beware, it’s extra poppy, extra upbeat and there may be 10 versions of every Christmas song ever.  Haha! j/k…kind of.


  • Sandy Lo

    Sandy Lo’s personal story is inspiring. She started, StarShine Magazine, an online publication in 2001, at the age of 18. She wrote her first novel in 2009, “Lost In You,” followed by the “Dream Catchers” Series. She was the first person ever to professionally interview Taylor Swift and has received personal endorsements for her books from members of boy bands Backstreet Boys and 98 Degrees. Recently, she has been seeing some tremendous momentum in book sales on Kindle. She has been included on the “50 Writers You Should Be Reading” list by The Authors Show, and “Dream Catchers”, “Breaking The Moon” and “Indigo Waters” reached the Top 100 Best Selling Coming of Age novels in Amazon’s Kindle Store. What makes this even more unique, is that Sandy relocated from NY to Nashville in order to write “The Watch Dog,” which is set in a fictional town outside of Music City. “The Watch Dog” reached the Top 10 Ghost Stories on Amazon. Aside from her writing projects, Sandy is also a freelance digital strategist.