The most anticipated break of the academic year other than summer, Christmas! For most of us this means free food, all the heating you desire and no bills, however all of these wonderful perks of going home for Christmas comes at a cost.

After 11 weeks of living away from home it’s easy to forget about the rules that come along with living with your parents; coming home at 4am is no longer applauded, trying to go out in a short skirt in near sub
zero temperatures results in a two hour lecture and the realisation that your mother’s nagging to do chores is a lot more persistent and convincing than your housemate’s.
Christmas Tree

Going home for Christmas for some freshers is the first time you’ve been home since embarking on your new journey of independence at university. Warning when you go home for a couple weeks you’ll find there will be times when you’re begging to be back in Pilks pulling an all nighter running off the fumes of Papa Si’s.

So here are a handful of things that irk me ever so slightly about going home over the festive period:

Actually getting home

When your parents suggest you take the train home and you spend your Saturday looking like a gypsy trying to lug about your suitcase, makeup chest and laptop around St Pancras trying to get onto an underground train (second year I learnt my lesson and strongly advised my parents to come and pick me up for the sake of my happiness, correspondingly theirs too).

 January Exams/ Deadlines

It’s all well and good looking forward to a few weeks respite until you realise that upon your arrival back in the bubble there is a heck load of revision to do for impending doom of January exams. It’s really hard to hide from the overcasting shadow of deadlines while you’re sitting gluttonously in front of the television after food babies one through five.

Christmas Gifts on an Overdraft

Yes we’re students but that doesn’t mean Christmas is a time to sit and stare at our overdraft in dismay, save that for post Boxing Day Sale blues. With Student Finance about to drop in the New Year I wouldn’t suggest blowing the bank just before that glorious day but get creative with your gifts, get heartfelt, get crafty and stay inexpensive. One of the perks of being a student it’s the only time where our poverty is widely accepted so make the most of it.

Christmas is a great time to reconnect with people

… Or so they say. Christmas would seem like an opportune time to catch up with friends you haven’t seen while … that is if family commitments, work obligations and revision permit and of course you can’t forget there is bound to be one flaky individual who will slightly alter a perfectly planned reunion that has taken one oddly named Whatsapp group and many ignored Whatsapp messages to organise.

There is no such thing as alone time

There is no place like home, you know that place where your parents wake you up to do chores or to go grocery shopping, look after a sibling or stay at home all day to wait for a package. Apparently alone time is not rather festive, despite how much you might want to sit in your room with your new Christmas presents, there’s no “me” in Christmas so suck it up and get involved with the passionate monopoly game that will probably end with at least one tantrum.

I’m not a Grinch and I do quite enjoy the festive season at home; there is no place I’d rather spend a couple weeks than with my wonderful yet weird family even if I had to look like a hoarding gypsy to get there.

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