Start watching
Tending Nature poster 2021

Tending Nature

Start watching

Southland Sessions

Start watching

Earth Focus

Start watching

Reporter Roundup

Start watching

City Rising

Start watching

Lost LA

Start watching
Your donation supports our high-quality, inspiring and commercial-free programming.
Support Icon
Learn about the many ways to support KCET.
Support Icon
Contact our Leadership, Advancement, Membership and Special Events teams.

This Holiday Season - Hope: Yay, Commercialism: Boo!

Nikki Maxwell, who you met in this week's web original, A Middle Class Christmas, shares some thoughts on how to get through the holidays on a budget.

Since I was laid-off in September, I've been asked a lot about holiday stress with three kids. Sure, it worries me. Right now, everything worries me. But here's the thing, in the absence of a lot of shopping money, creativity becomes really important. Family time starts to eclipse a need to go find presents at the mall.

I'm lucky. My kids have a lot of support. They won't miss all the presents and hoopla. I worry about being Santa and having to find a way to get those list items that the grandparents don't buy.

Here are some things we're doing this season to spread joy and limit that grinchy feeling:

  1. More music. We put on the old mixed holiday CDs and have been rockin' out. The kids and Grandpa are making up songs left and right and planning to perform "Rockin' Santa" on Monday the 22nd at www.kulakswoodshed.com
  2. Shrine to Santa and letters. My kids are decorating a lot and writing notes to Santa using their new mail system in the house. We talk a lot about the spirit of Christmas.
  3. Giving. There's always someone in a worse boat than me. I've done a lot of volunteering this year and it sure helps me not be such a whiny bitch. I've donated clothes and food as well as time and I feel a lot better for having done it.
  4. Crafts. We're making stuff and painting chocolate and being crafty. My kids can turn anything into a craft project as long as there is enough glue and tape.
  5. Phone calls. For me, my long distance is free. This means I can talk to my long distance friends and family a lot. This helps keep me sane.
  6. Focus on the family. We're planning a lot of Uno games this holiday season and we're talking a lot about family- those we see a lot and those we don't. It is a free way to feel enriched.
  7. Cooking. I made some cider recently and the smell was like a yoga class.
  8. Joy. Sometimes you just have to Be The Joy you wish to seek. You might not feel it at first, but sit around long enough in a jingly hat and you too will feel the joy.

Hang in there everyone! Have a beautiful season!

Support Provided By
Support Provided By
Read More
Nurse Yvonne Yaory checks on a coronavirus patient who is connected to a ventilator. | Heidi de Marco/California Healthline

No More ICU Beds at the Main Public Hospital in the Nation’s Largest County as COVID Surges

As COVID patients have flooded into LAC+USC in recent weeks, they’ve put an immense strain on its ICU capacity and staff — especially since non-COVID patients, with gunshot wounds, drug overdoses, heart attacks and strokes, also need intensive care.
Vials of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine.

Your No-Panic Guide to the COVID-19 Vaccine: Is It Safe, and When Can I Get It?

Here's what we know about the COVID-19 vaccines and how they are being distributed in L.A. County.
Nurse Michael Lowman gets the first dose of the Pfizer BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine from nurse practitioner Christie Aiello at Providence St. Joseph Hospital in Orange, CA, on Dec. 16, 2020. | Jeff Gritchen/MediaNews Group/Orange County Register via Getty

Orange County Gets First Doses of COVID-19 Vaccine

A Providence St. Joseph Hospital nurse was the first person in Orange County today to be vaccinated for COVID-19, shortly followed by other health care workers.