These Are a Few of My Favorite Christmas Things

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  1. Christmas Carols.  I love playing Christmas carols on the radio, from my digital media, and especially making my own music on the piano!  I love singing Christmas songs around the house, in the car, and at church with the choir.  If you were to ask me my favorite, that would be difficult.  But I will try. . . (Though, I might change my mind in 10 minutes!)
    1.  Christmas song: It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year.  I memorized every word of this song when I sang in the Cosmopolitan Singers in St. Louis.  For several years, I had the privilege of singing with the St. Louis Symphony under maestro Richard Hayman for the series of Christmas Pops and the series of summer pops concerts at Queeny Park.
    2. Baby Jesus song:  Away in a Manger.  When my children were small, I sang the third verse with them as a goodnight prayer:  “Be near me, Lord Jesus, I ask Thee to stay Close by me forever and love me I pray.  Bless all the dear children in Thy tender care, and take us to heaven to live with Thee there.”
    3.  Christmas hymn:    In the Bleak Mid-Winter.   I adore the haunting melody of this hymn.  I was intrigued to discover today, it was written by Gustav Holst, a well-known British composer most known for his work, The Planets.  The equally memorable lyricist is Christina Rossetti; the last stanza of the hymn has been memorized by many:  “What can I give him, Poor as I am? If I were a shepherd, I would bring a lamb; If I were a wise man, I would do my part; Yet what I can I give him:  give my heart.”
    4.  Santa song:  Up on the Housetop.  A great action song for kids.  And I am a die-hard Santa lover!  The idea of Santa came from  imitating a priest, St. Nicholas.
    5. Christmas Carol:  Angels We Have Heard on High.  I am not an alto, but I always sing the lovely rolling alto part in the chorus.
    6. And Handel’s The Messiah!  The ultimate in Christmas and Easter music! The Christmas portion is highlighted by “For Unto Us a Child is Born” and “Glory to God in the highest, and peace on earth.”
  2. Decorations.  For me, Christmas begins November 1, as soon as Halloween is put away.  The first things to come out are the lighted candles in each window of my house and my Spode china — Christmas Tree.  As I have time, other decorations follow.  Since my daughter died December 15, 2008, angels and harps remind me of her.  I have large and small angels and harps inside and outside my house.  I have two trees; one an adult tree, with only blue, silver, and white decorations with many ribbons.  Another tree is more appealing to younger kids with colored lights and an assortment of decorations collected over the years.  How long does Christmas last?  A minimum of 12 days — until Epiphany on January 6.  Nothing comes down until after Epiphany when I like to host a dinner party for close friends.   Then I slowly begin to put Christmas away.  The candles in the windows remain throughout January.  In the bleak mid-winter, I need their brightness to keep cheery in spite of the weather.
  3. Christmas Cards.  They have almost become something from the past.  Most people are too busy or too digital to buy, address, and write paper Christmas cards.  I think just about everyone on my Christmas card list is a Facebook friend.  This year, so far, I have received only five paper cards but several digital cards.  However, most people on my Christmas card list do not know my new mailing address as of this fall.  Friends may be waiting to hear from me before sending.  I spent this morning selecting recipes for the holidays and making a grocery list, followed by practicing my ice skating until there were too many crazies (kids and adult men who knew nothing about skating).  I left while my bones were still intact.  Arriving home earlier than planned, I had time for Christmas cards.  Then I read Ann Voskamp’s blog post — “A few of my favorite things:  2016 gift guide” listing homemade items, many from third world artisans, therefore helping people who really need the support.  The list of “favorite things” rang a bell with me, so I scratched the Christmas card idea and wrote to you!
  4. Christmas Books and Movies.  My favorite Christmas book, Skipping Christmas by Grisham, was made into a movie, Christmas with the Kranks.  Hilarious story in word or picture!  But there are two classics which have to be mentioned!  The novel is Charles Dicken’s A Christmas Carol.  That is a story which MUST be seen on stage or screen, or read EVERY year.  It embodies the Spirit of Christmas.  Then another movie which ranks as a classic — the crazy-funny, A Christmas Story with Ralphie receiving a beebee gun for his 9th Christmas.  My son received a beebee gun for his 9th Christmas, the year after the movie came out.  I can’t leave out How the Grinch Stole Christmas!  Awesome story whether in the short Dr. Seuss book or the elongated motion picture.
  5. Wishing you the Merriest of Christmases!!!  Thank you for reading my ramblings.

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About 9awalsh

A genealogist and writer who has uncovered legacy stories which must be told. I also write a blog, Deciphering Life, trying to figure out why life becomes so tangled -- www.9awalsh.wordpress.com
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2 Responses to These Are a Few of My Favorite Christmas Things

  1. Lynn Waller says:

    Some great thoughts. I always enjoy your thoughtful musings. Merry Christmas.

    Like

  2. 9awalsh says:

    Thanks, Lynn. Miss you guys! Hope you have a wonderful Christmas!

    Like

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