Holidays Survival Guide
Ah, the holidays. The food, the festivities, the free Advent Calendar prizes! It really is the most wonderful time of the year. Or is it? For some Neopians, the month-long Winter Starlight Celebration can be just as stressful as it is fun. With so many presents to buy, things to prepare, and special occasions to attend, it is no wonder some Neopets end up feeling exhausted and miserable well before the Month of Celebrating is through. So before your Neopet turns into a Grinch, here are five tips to help everyone survive the holidays.
1. Get Enough Sleep!
Nothing wreaks havoc on your Neopet's state of mind quite like sleep depravation. Most Neopets need eight hours of sleep on regular nights. However, during December holiday parties that last until 3 am, late-night carolers, and having to wake up early in order to get a head start on shoveling can all take away from your pet's precious shut-eye. Ensure your pet gets the rest they need by investing in quality bedtime products. I recommend:
This bed does double duty. It's both seasonal and sleep-inducing! The mattress is sturdy, but still soft enough to feel as though you are sleeping on a cloud. As soon as your pet slips beneath the warm candy cane blankets, visions of sugar-plums will be dancing in their heads.
Nothing helps a Neopet fall asleep faster than a good bedtime story! Now there are plenty of bedtime stories available in stores that will do a good job at this, such as Wocky Lullaby, Kreludan Bed Time Stories, and the very affordable Maraquan Bed Time Stories. However, we suggest you pick up Peaceful Sleep because who knows more about sleeping during the Month of Celebrating than the Snowager himself?
Many Neopets travel during the holidays, but that doesn't mean you have to sacrifice on sleep! With this Sleeping Kit, you can catch some Zs no matter where you are! This star-covered kit comes with a sleeping cap, pajamas, and a sleeping mask. The mask does a great job at blocking out all unwanted light. You could even use this at home!
2. Moderation is Key!
During the Winter Starlight Celebration, healthy eating gets cast aside in favor of overindulgent treats. Some Neopets wind up feeling guilty after eating one too many sweets and others struggle to lose their holiday weight gain come the new year. This can be avoided though if your Neopet practices moderation when eating. Now, I am not saying to shun all seasonal goodies. Your pet can enjoy their Creamy Chocolate Pie, Christmas Pudding, and all of their favorite treats, so long as you remember to balance their diet out with more healthy fare. May I suggest:
Roast Chestnut Pie
This scrumptious pie is made from chestnuts and cranberries. Not only are both of these very seasonal ingredients, but the roasting process allows the bold chestnut flavor to shine. Rather than getting lost lost behind the cranberry taste, the two go perfectly well together.
Healthy Apple Cake and Starberry Cider
Prefer having a slice of cake instead of pie? This one will delight your taste buds and your guests' alike! The butter in this recipe has been replaced by applesauce. However, although the fat content has been slashed in half, none of the taste has been sacrifice. Sweet, but robust at the same time, a slice of Healthy Apple Cake would go great with a glass of Starberry Cider and be the perfect way to wrap up your holiday feast.
Small Neggnog Smoothie
Neggnog?! Healthy? Well, this isn't your traditional eggnog. Remember, Neggs are fruits, not eggs. While sugar and cream are used in the recipe, as long as you skip out on the mega version of this smoothie, your waistline will be okay. This smoothie's small size keeps its number of calories on the low side. Plus, it's not the holidays in Neopia without some neggnog!
3. Take Time for Yourself.
Dear reader, repeat after me: You are not obligated to do anything. Yes, you heard me right! You don't need to say yes to every single party. Your Neopet doesn't need to attend every single get-together, especially if they are feeling under the weather. It is okay to say "no." When you start to feel overwhelmed, take time off from all of the festivities. Trust me, you can afford to. After all, the Month of Celebrating has 31 days! Here are some of the best ways to relax during the holiday season:
No Sleep Til Brightvale...Part 2
Is there anything better than curling up with a good book? No Sleep Til Brightvale was quite a popular book when it was released in Year 11, so Part 2 was one of this year's most highly anticipated sequels. Your Neopet will enjoy following their sleepless journey to Brightvale and forget all about their holiday-related stress.
Elegant Cup of Tea
When the weather leaves your Neopet feeling as a frozen as a Brucicle, warm them up with a hot drink! Now, you could give them a regular Cup of Tea, but the elegance of this cup will make your pet feel extra special, and extra fancy! Brewing a batch of peppermint tea would go perfectly with the season as well. Watch as all of your Neopet's worries melt away when they take a sip of their Elegant Cup of Tea. Really, the only thing better than this would be an Elegant Cup of Coffee! *Runs*
Believe it or not, exercise is one of the best way to deal with holiday stress. Be sure to make some time for it! Aside from obvious benefits like keeping your pet healthy and strong, research has shown that exercise releases chemicals in your brain that leave one feeling happier and more relaxed. Not only will staying active fight back against stress, but it will also give your Neopet more energy to get through the remainder of the holidays.
4. It's Quality, Not Quantity.
There is more to the Winter Starlight Celebration than just presents. However, even the most frugal struggle at this time of the year. The holidays have a tendency to burn a hole in everyone's pockets. Especially when you add the cost of decorations, food, and the latest winter fashions on top of all the gift-giving. If you or your Neopet is worried about your bank account being able to survive a holiday shopping spree, I offer the suggestion of focusing on gifts that have meaning as opposed to a giant price tag. Here are some recommendations that will make your friends happy and help your Neopet avoid looking like Mr. Scrooge.
Neopian Philharmonic Ticket
Studies show that gifts that are experience-based are the best sort of present you can give another because you will remember it more than some flashy electronic or accessory. Why not give someone the gift of live music? Tickets to Neopian bands can be purchased for 1250 NP at the Tyrannian Ticket Booth and often you can score cheaper ones through the Shop Wiz, Auctions, or Trades! The highly acclaimed Neopian Philharmonic are a popular choice for music fans. However, if your friends are more heavy, consider purchasing tickets for them to see the Twisted Roses or Wock till You Drop.
Hear me out on this one. It is frigid outside during the day and night time is even worse. Can you even imagine what it's like for those who live on Terror Mountain? Brr! With a restock price of just over 906 NP at the Neopian Pharmacy this is a perfect gift for your Neopet's friends who live in colder abodes. Also, they will never have to worry about getting the dreaded disease. Neophobia, because this blanket is the cure for that!
While expensive dresses and video games may be nice, objects don't bring the same joy to a Neopet's life that a Petpet can. Give a gift that your friend will truly cherish. Petpets come in countless shapes and sizes. There is one of there for everyone! Some pick Petpets that match themselves, for example White Kacheeks and White Weewoos look great together. Others prefer to match personality traits. Hopsos, Mallards, Moinks, Buzzers, and Noils are just some of the many Petpets you can purchase for below 1000 NP. We decided to focus on the Sparky in particular because they are loyal, full of love, and would make a great present for a friend. They only cost around 1000 NP on the Shop Wiz too!
5. Express Gratitude.
This is something you and your Neopet should do year-round. Reflecting on all that you have to be grateful for will not only help you when you are feeling blue, but studies have shown it can improve your overall happiness and well-being. During this time of the year however, take the opportunity to acknowledge not just the great aspects of your life, but all of the Neopians who make it so wonderful. Be it through cards or gifts, when you get together with family and friends, let them know how much you appreciate them! Gratitude is at the heart of the holiday season, after all.
There you have it. Your five tips to surviving the holiday season in one piece. Now go out and enjoy yourself!