December at Milton brings lights, music and holiday treats to every part of campus. Each house is decorated with signature style, from the wreaths that spell out “Robbins” to a lighted, candy-cane “M” adorning Millet House, which faces the sparkling “H” that marks Hallowell. As boarding students prepare to leave for winter break, they follow traditions, both time-honored and new, to get into the holiday spirit in their home away from home.
In Goodwin House, one long-standing tradition is that the house monitor dresses like Santa to run the Secret Santa exchange, which takes place the night before break. The Goodwin boys will also celebrate their second-annual holiday cookie baking and decorating contest and adorn a “traditions tree,” making paper ornaments that depict a special way their family celebrates any holiday.
An “Elf on the Shelf” is new to Robbins House this year, where the girls celebrated a holiday decorating party the day they returned from Thanksgiving break. In keeping with Robbins custom, the girls create ornaments to honor Christmas, Hanukkah and other winter traditions. Each class designs its own plaque to be displayed in the common room throughout the season.
Forbes boys have been busy, decorating the dorm and rehearsing carols to sing at the girls’ houses and for the Head of School. On the night before they depart for vacation, Forbes boys exchange gifts in a Secret Santa swap and relax with hot cocoa and candy canes. Millet girls have decked out the front of the house with a bright display of snowmen, candy canes and reindeer. Wolcott boys, after serenading the girls’ houses, sit down to a feast of Chinese food and a viewing of the original Dr. Seuss’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas!
The boys of Norris House exchange gifts and sing carols; they also gather with Millet girls to take photos before the boarders’ holiday dinner in Robert Saltonstall Gymnasium next week.