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What's great about Christmas? Let me tell you!

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Posted: Monday, December 12, 2005 10:00 pm | Updated: 6:12 pm, Wed May 16, 2012.

After last week someone actually had the nerve to ask me what's so great about Christmas. Are you kidding?

I tried to squeak out the millions of things that came to mind, but I instantly realized there's no way possible to rattle off what I like about the season quickly or in an orderly fashion.

So I actually took time out to consider what is most important and what makes this time of year the best.

Wade Heath

10. ABC Family's 25 Days of Christmas.

If you have yet to tune into ABC Family's presentation of all things Christmas then you are missing out on 25 days of pure holiday madness!Everyday the channel has numerous Christmas specials, from blockbuster hits to clay-mation classics, not to mention the channel's own original movies they unveil every year. This channel is my way of settling down after a hard December day of work, school or Christmas gift buying and enjoying all the goodies the season has to offer.

9. Christmas Weekends with 99.3 FM KJOY.

A huge thank you to the folks responsible for adopting the "all Christmas music" weekends on the radio dial. Stockton's 99.3 FM plays nothing but Christmas music all weekend, every weekend in December. This change from their normal platform of light rock hits is not just refreshing, but welcomed for the Christmas shopping season. It's cool to lock down into Christmas mode every weekend. It helps ring in Dec. 25 and reminds all those diehard shoppers what the real reason they're buying for is.

8. School's out.

Oh heck yes! This is definitely one of the greatest parts of December - vacation. There's nothing quite like finishing up that last final and racing out the door to nearly four weeks (or two depending on school) of non-stop anything other than school. Plus, with the coming of Christmas break also comes the relief of finally being able to relax and enjoy Christmas.

7. Tree-topping tradition.

Although this normally happens just after Thanksgiving, we couldn't ring in the season without this tradition. Just before my Great Grandma passed away she found out that I didn't have a star on my tree and wanted one bought for me. I received that star and every year without fail it ceremoniously is clamped on top of the tree and plugged in, and every year it works. What's so great about this? Well the plastic $4.99 star was bought about 12 years ago and there has yet to be any bulb burnt out or chip in the design.

6. Lodi Parade of Lights.

A joyous and wonderful way to ring in Christmas, the parade is a staple of the season. Although I wasn't able to attend it this year due to work responsibilities, I was told that even though it was raining it was still more awesome than ever. Year after year I am more pleased and awed at the creative displays of sparkling goodness coming out of the community. I hope this tradition is around for years to come.

5. 24 hours of "A Christmas Story."

"You'll shoot your eye out!" the famed quote that goes along with one of the greatest Christmas movies ever made. "A Christmas Story", follows a young boy on his journey to Christmas. While in route, the boy tries repeatedly to gain acceptance for the one gift he really wants, a Red Ryder carbine action two hundred shot range model air rifle. But of course all the opposition is against him - even Santa. To truly respect the movie you must do yourself the pleasure of seeing it much like I do every year. It wouldn't be Christmas without it. "A Christmas Story" runs 24 hours beginning on Christmas Eve on TBS.

4. Auntie Candi's bakery buffet.

Every year, without fail, my aunt, (who should have opened her own bakery) makes the BEST desserts. From bread products to chocolate goodies, she is the reason why Christmas tastes so good.

And what's Christmas without food? Doesn't food make holidays? (i.e. Thanksgiving) Each year you can find me at the dessert table with a plate of tasty treats that I hide only to take home later. Mmm … I can taste them now.

3. Christmas Eve.

Who could forget one of the most fun nights ever? I don't know about you, but Christmas Eve is just as, if not more fun, than Christmas day. Christmas Eve is all about going from one stop of family to another, visiting, eating, drinking and being merry. The churches' candlelight service is always something I can't wait to attend and enjoy. Standing with other believers over candles and crosses really hits home. The warmth of Christmas Eve is something that will stick in my mind forever as the prep event for the big day. But in a way, Christmas Eve has its own special blend of cheer and nostalgia.

2. Family.

They've been mentioned in previous numbers and boy oh boy isn't it true. Family is without a shadow of a doubt one of the best thing about Christmas. The hugs, the laughter, the people that care for you and who you care for back. That's what it is all about. From breaking bread together to opening presents, family are those who stick with you through thick, thin and love you no matter what - not just because they have to see you one day a year.

1. Jesus Christ.

He's been at the center of controversy for a little over 2000 years. He is the sole reason for the season. He is why I celebrate so much. Without this guy I wouldn't have a top 10 list and the stores wouldn't have a reason to make a lot of money this month. I hate to go all Christian on you this month, but in honesty, this is why we enjoy this time of the year. Christ's birth has sparked a month long kind-fest between people who wouldn't normally speak with one another, but do because of the season. Musicians cut special albums because they're touched by something about this time of year, whole city blocks post lights on their buildings and houses because something moved them to do so. Whatever the reason may be, let's not be afraid to assume it has something to do with the subject of this number.

Wade Heath of Lodi is a college student and editor of http://www.lodiyouth.blogspot.com. He can be reached at: reachwade@lycos.com.

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