People say pandemic has changed their Christmas priorities

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CHARLESTON, WV (WOWK)—Christmas morning is just hours away and while some families are fully immersed in their holiday traditions and get-togethers others aren’t feeling as merry and bright as they have in years past.

“Well it feels different from last year because I feel hope,” said Elizabeth Chippett. “I feel positive and I think that finally, maybe I’ll get to go to England to see my family.”

For Chippett and others this year it isn’t gifts or goodies that they are thinking of on Christmas Eve, it is the people in their lives.

“This year is different and it is different because we are making up for lost time with family and friends,” said Shannon Cannon, Charleston, WV. The pandemic is still changing so much for so many both in terms of their plans and their perspective.

“I feel like all of the heaviness of the last couple of years has maybe come to a peak. Then we were excited that maybe things were getting back to normal and now we’ve got new things hanging over our head, back to masking, things like that,” said Lisa Lineberg, Charleston, WV.

People in Charleston on Christmas Eve said their priorities are a little different this year too.

“I think we are more appreciative,” Cannon said. “We’ve had a lot on the line the last couple of years and this is a good time for us to say ‘hey we have a lot of things to be grateful for’.”

That sense of gratitude is a sentiment that was mentioned by many.

“I feel like I am more grateful this year for my family and just all of the basic things of life,” said Lineberg. “A roof over my head, basic necessities, all that. I’m just very very grateful this year.”

Family gatherings may be smaller than they were pre-pandemic but people are still out searching for the magic and the joy and looking forward to happier times.

“One tradition that we normally do is make our Italian pizzelle cookies,” Lineberg said. “We didn’t have time to do it this year and now we are all regretting it.”

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