Help the Homeless
The holidays can be a time when you get so caught up in your own personal matters that you forget the outside world even exists. There are so many less fortunate people on the streets of Chicago and in local neighborhoods that could use the simplest essentials. Create goodie bags full of basic necessities: a couple of granola bars, gloves and hand warmers for cold days and nights, some tissues, chapstick and perhaps a $5 gift card to a fast food restaurant. Distributing these homemade bags to the homeless is a selfless way to spend a day over break, while knowing you made a difference in someone’s life.
The winter months in Chicago are some of the most enjoyable, especially around the holidays. The city is always dressed in its seasonal best from head to toe with lights, trees and greenery. Strolling the streets of Chicago is a treat in itself just to see the buildings and sites lit up with decorations. While roaming the streets, maybe meander toward Millennium Park. The Park is famous around the holidays for its ice skating rink. Bring your family, friends or significant other for a night of fun or perhaps embarrassment depending on your coordination!
Catch up on Sleep
Does finals week leave you looking and feeling like a zombie? Now is your chance to catch some Zs. Winter break means no more 8 a.m. classes to set an alarm for and no more tests to stay at Milner until the wee hours of the morning for last minute cram sessions. It also means you won’t have to listen to your roommates wake up for their 8 a.m. classes or come home in the middle of the night. You can plan your sleep schedule to accommodate your needs, and since the semester is over, you have about a month to hibernate before the next one starts.
Spend Time with Your Family
“Break” to the average college student may mean sleeping in until 1 p.m., taking advantage of Mom’s home cooked dinner then leaving for a night out with friends. However, to the parents of the student, it means getting to see their child they only see a handful of times during the semester. Set aside a little extra time to spend with your mom, dad and siblings over winter break to show your love and appreciation for them. It might surprise you how underrated a night in with the family really is.
Take Advantage of the Snow
Even if the snow doesn’t pile up in your town, that doesn’t mean you can’t take advantage of it. Be spontaneous; take a day off and gather a group of friends to travel north where the real fluffy stuff is. There are tons of ski and snowboard lodges. You can learn to glide — or tumble — down the slopes. If you’re not as adventurous, perhaps start a snowball fight or build a snowman or fort with the others on the sidelines. The snow won’t last forever, so enjoy it to the fullest!