Admit it: Winter is the most wonderful time of the year

Summer can actually do one

beauty birmingham christmas cold december dogs eid fashion festive german market jumpers pets presents ramadan winter

The excuse to wear black. The lights. The jumpers. How much of us can honestly say we hate it?

As we enter December and begin to swap autumn leaves for icy pavements, let me just take a moment to remind you to stop moaning – we’re heading into the best season of the year.

Just look at the wonders a German Market can inspire.

Just look at the wonders a German Market can inspire.

Yes, chilly old winter gets a bit of a bad rep, but it’s sharp morning breeze and dark nights are all just a part of the most spirited time of year. Let’s be frank too, don’t we all love sitting by the warm fire, snuggled under a blanket, looking out at the cold?

Also, I can’t be the only one relieved to finally be able to justify my wardrobe and the entire black contents. When you tell me I’m wearing “so much black”, it’s a compliment. Less gloomy, more sophisticated.

I can no longer be judged.

I can no longer be judged.

Glitter makes an annual comeback and admit it or not you love it. From the glitter of the city Christmas lights, to the glitter entwined in that goofy tie your uncle wears, or jewellery your BF bought you. Or, plot twist, you buy some yourself because you know, if you can’t treat yourself in the festive season when can you?

Twinkles, twinkles everywhere.

Twinkles, twinkles everywhere.

The time of year we rejoice to gild our nails in oh-so-pretty glitter and curse when we remember what a devil it is to take off.

We justify our over-indulgence podge by talking about cavemen preserving fat for the chill, nothing to do with the chocolate. Then we proceed hide our seasonal chubby ways under excessive layers of thermals, knits and hoodies. This is maybe the best perk of winter. Who knows, or cares, if I’m size 8 or 12 under here? Am I wearing a bra? Perhaps I’m wearing Pyjamas.  I don’t even know.

A jumper can hide a world of sins.

A jumper can hide a world of sins.

And of course, the driving force behind our festivities: Christmas, Hanukkah, Ramadan and the time we get to celebrate with family and those we love most. Our tutors give us a month off and our devoted mothers bundle us home in a car full of depressing textbooks and files. We return to our home towns, villages, hamlets, and fill ourselves with familar nostalgia.

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Chester, cosy as usual.

If you’re anything like me, you’re looking forward to the much awaited reunion with the love-of-your-life, your dog. I guess it could be a cat or a goldfish too, but as a dog person, there’s nothing like the waggy tails and complimentary evening snuggles of a devoted pup.

Aside from that, the receiving (and giving, you tight wads) a whole bunch of presents on Christmas Day, the nights of Hanukkah, the end of Ramadan, is the most commercialised, but favourite, part of the season for many.

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Don’t judge my wrapping skils.

You catch up with home friends that you may not have seen since reading week because when your best friend stows himself away to Aberdeen, train tickets are kind of impossible on a budget from the mainland English countryside.

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Catching up on the wild stories, naturally.

If you’re celebrating Christmas, your roast might look something like this. If you’re celebrating Eid, you probably need a three-day feast after all that fasting. Technically, Chinese New Year  falls in winter this year too (8th February) so basically delicious food is rife at this time of year.

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Don’t judge me for sitting at the head of the table, Christmas is also my Birthday OK.

Admittedly for many of us, the season takes a decidedly downward turn after festivities end.

The abundance of twinkling fairy-lights are gone, or worse, left drapped across streets neglected. The Pogues and Wizzard become a depressing reminder that Father Christmas has been and gone, you still haven’t got the pug you begged your parents for; you spent a lot of Christmas Day playing with your siblings on Sims 4 or GTA and debating politics with your grandparents.

You return to University soon – the land of stingy housemates that won’t let you put on the heating, life without your car, cooking with a trial-and-error approach and worst of all 9am lectures with seminars and three articles of reading to do for each one. Joy.

Nobody enjoys 6pm pitch-black walks home from campus.

Nobody enjoys 6pm pitch-black walks home from campus.

Although yes, January deadlines are the ultimate downer at first, once they’re done, you’ll realise this is your last semester before exams and might actually start enjoying yourself again, i.e. embrace what little freedom you have from the library now.

Also, despite the fact you might become so cold that you have to wear a fur coat to pre-drinks, it’s okay: you’re clad in an array of your festive gifts, feeling like a diva.

As a student, new clothing is like gold, rarely come across and highly valued (until you throw up on it).

It's that cold in here.

When someone’s put on fur, you know it’s too cold in here.

Before you know it Valentines Day is upon you, which is either a great excuse to celebrate with the better half. Or dance until you cry at Roosters at 6am, because you don’t have a better half and were keen to prove you’re just fine without one. Either way, more celebrations all round.

The emergence from winter 2k15.

The emergence from winter 2k15.

After that, you’re on the straight and narrow toward exam season my friend. When you get to early April and it’s still unacceptably chilly, you’ll wish it was the end of November and all your festivities were before you, not your exams.

So quit moaning and enjoy the sweater weather, cuddling your dog, moderate freedom and the sweet taste of cinnamon and mugs of hot chocolate by the fire while it lasts.