Typically, I don’t do much in terms of decorating for Christmas in my apartment in Washington, D.C., because I leave town to be with family in California. But this year, I’ve embraced decorating (and doing so early) for other holidays—as a way to freshen up my space and give myself a soothing focal point while I work from home—and I’m planning to do the same for Christmas… starting right after Thanksgiving. This fall, for instance, when my sense of Halloween nostalgia hit especially hard, I adorned my tables and shelves with ceramic pumpkins, and my walls with garlands of felt bats and ghosts. (I also packed my weekends with seasonal activities, including trips to a nearby pumpkin patch and a party to carve jack-o’-lanterns.) I found that the more I engaged with the season, the happier I felt.