by Hannah Berner
The holidays are right around the corner, so we thought we’d create a list of how to write 10 common holiday greetings for you.
The funny thing about this time of year is it’s a time when we go back in time and, for many of us, actually write to others. With a pen. And paper. Crazy right?
Holiday greetings seem like they should be relatively straightforward, but they include a number of curveballs that often trip people up. Do I need that apostrophe? Should “holiday season” be capitalized? You get the point.
Before you start writing your cards, glance over the list below to freshen up on how to write these common holiday greetings.
1. Best wishes for the holiday season – It never fails that when writing this it’s tempting to capitalize Holiday and Season. It’s not necessary, nor is it actually correct. Stick to the grammar basics on this one and only capitalize proper nouns, such as a holiday and the first letter in a sentence.
2. Deck the halls – Is it “Come over and deck the halls with us.” or “Come over and Deck the Halls with us.” If you chose the first option that doesn’t capitalize Deck the Halls you got it right. It’s a proper noun and the rule of thumb there is that if it’s not starting a sentence, lower case is appropriate. Deck the halls is a well known statement and quotation marks are also not necessary.
3. Happy Hanukkah – How in the world do you actually spell Hanukkah? Do you know it can be spelled three different ways? That’s right. The variations are Hanukkah, Hannukkah and Chanukah. The first spelling you’ll find in dictionaries and the preferred spelling by the Associated Press is Hanukkah. Just remember one n and two k’s.
4. Happy Holidays – This one could easily be confusing, especially if you compare it to number one above. “Happy Holidays” is typically used when you aren’t really sure what holiday someone celebrates. In that instance you are replacing Christmas or Hanakkuh with the word Holiday making it a proper noun, which means it should be capitalized.
5. Happy New Year – Technically, the holiday is New Year’s Day, but it’s ok to capitalize Happy New Year, as it’s an acceptable replacement. Not to utterly confuse you, but there are also instances that it’s not capitalized. One example might be, “Kick the new year off to a great start.”
6. Merry Christmas or Merry Xmas – Where’d the X come from? It’s the symbol for the first letter in the Greek word for Christ. Be warned, replacing the word Christmas, especially in written form, with the X can be offensive to some people.
7. Peace on earth – No need to capitalize earth. This is similar to “deck the halls.” You only capitalize it if it’s at the beginning of a sentence.
8. Joyous Kwanzaa – Sometimes this gets spelled as kwanza. That’s a Swahili word meaning first, which the holiday is derived from. The actually spelling for the holiday though is Kwanzaa.
9. Season’s Greetings – Treat this the same as you do Happy Holiday’s. It’s categorizing a number of holidays. Make sure you add the apostrophe “s” to show you are sending greetings for the season.
10. Warm wishes – If all else fails and you can’t remember what to capitalize or not to capitalize, stick with words you are certain about.
There you have it. A list of how to write 10 common holiday greetings.
Enjoy the holidays and try not to stress over writing cards too much. People will simply be thrilled to receive a card from you. Have fun spreading the joy!
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