Here at beijingkids the Holidays start in late Autumn, before we put the November issue out. Magazine editors are time travelers. We live in the future, at least eight weeks ahead of the rest of mankind. In our world it’s been Christmas since before Halloween. This suits me just fine: I love the holidays and I always will. You’ll never get a bah or a humbug out of me. December is the glowing heart of winter, the time of year when we indulge children (actual and inner), make time to pamper and spoil our loved ones, take stock of the year past, and plan the twelve months coming. What’s not to love?
So, I’m all good with a marathon season. It’s always been this way for me. As soon as I could follow the most basic instructions I was enrolled in our local community Christmas pantomime. Beijing Playhouse have done an awesome job bringing the magic of panto to our city in years past. If you’ve caught one of theirs you’ll know panto is a raucous, fairytale-based, family-friendly form of comedic, musical theater, and it always features crossdressing cast members. Yep, it’s got something for everyone! From age 3 and up, I was singing, dancing, and delivering my lines. Everyone in our locality was either in it, backstage, or watching it each year. It was a completely free activity that kept us out of the house, rehearsing, and having fun every winter, and just like December magazine, it started in October.
And the music didn’t stop there. Christmas hymns resonate with memories of joining the adult choir as a preteen. Squashed together with the other altos, I sang mysterious Latin words in four part harmony; the choir’s melded voices floating through incense-thickened air over bowed heads, crib, and candles ablaze. You can read all about Harrow Beijing’s student choristers on p38. While Jennifer Ambrose explains why she prefers to return home for the holidays on p47.
If last month is anything to go by, we are in for a long cold winter. Make the most of the snowy outdoors and try a winter sport (p54); find plenty of ways to make holiday memories with your family (p32); or on the coldest of days try your hand at our holiday crafts (p34). Santa is in for a big treat if you follow our recipe for holiday cookies on p28, and we’ve got your feasting covered: check out p30. Finally, we speak to three inspiring volunteers about their experiences giving hope and help to others through their charitable work on p50. I’d like to say special thanks to my team, contributors, readers, and all the kids and grownups we’ve interviewed and worked with this past year. Happy Holidays and Happy New Year to everyone!
This article originally appeared on page 7 of the beijingkids December 2015 issue. Click here to read the issue for free on Issuu.com. To find out how you can get your own copy, email email@example.com.