I wrote this post last year, but I’ve decided that this needs to be an annual discussion. There are a lot of new people around here with opinions that deserve to be voiced, and some of you who were around last year may have had changes of heart, seeing as how my own preferences have changed since last year, all noted below.
Christmas traditions pull opinions out of people with the fervency of a string between a doorknob and a loose tooth. Even people who are typically easygoing and un-opinionated can shockingly explode when a despised Christmas song comes on the radio, or alternately burst into tears of unbridled joy when their favorite holiday movie scrolls by.
And dare you mention one of your own holiday preferences on Facebook, you will receive an avalanche of arguments for both the hatred and the love of your personally opinionated item.
So, in that vein, I’ve decided to open myself up for judgment to the Holiday Masses and share my own opinions. And I hope that you will add your own lists in the comments – who knows…if there’s enough data, perhaps even a graph or two will be birthed.
Rachel’s Top 10 Christmas Tradition Dislikes:
10. “Santa Baby” – the engulfing skeeziness of this song makes me feel the need to immediately wash my ears upon hearing. Nobody wants to think about Santa like that.
(Also – mixing children AND “Santa Baby” should be illegal.)
9. Elf on a Shelf – This is on my bottom 10 list because I’m the uncool Mom who hasn’t done it. So the overwhelming number of your witty Facebook pictures of what your Elf was up to last night does nothing but pile guilt and intense feelings of inadequacies upon my head.
Also? He’s creepy.
8. “All I want for Christmas Is You” – I’m not ashamed that I like a bit of 90’s Mariah ballad action. But this song is the epitome of mixing her high-pitched squeal with whine. Yoooooo-oooo-ou BAYBAY.
7. Little Girl Santa Dresses – Obviously, matching Christmas Smock should be on this list, but that was too expected, so I added fuzzy Santa dresses instead. These remind me of the song “Santa Baby”. See item #10 for further explanation of my hatred.
6. Any and all Charlie Brown Christmas movies – I remember these fondly from my childhood, but upon DVR’ing a couple for Ali last Christmas, I was immediately overcome with sadness and angst over Charlie Brown repeatedly being called dumb, fat, stupid, and a loser. I know, Linus and the end and the Christmas story and all…but I couldn’t fight through the depression to make it there.
5. National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation – This movie would have easily been #1 on the list a few years ago – I despise trainwreck movies with all my being (“Meet The Parents” = my concept of hell). However, my dear friend Nikki has helped me see SOME intrinsic value in this movie by pointing out it’s more subtle nuances, like Cousin Eddie’s dark black dickie under his thin white sweater.
4. Visiting Santa at the Mall – My child has never had any inclination to talk to any stranger, let alone sit in one’s lap and tell him her deepest desires. Whose kid does this?? And how much Jack Daniels do you have to sneak into their sippy cup to make them want to do this?? And what type of illegal holiday cheer are you on to make you willing to wait in that interminably long and whining, screaming, pooping-in-pants line???
(Okay – so we obviously did this one this year. I do feel a bit traitorous to my own opinions, but it is what it is. Let’s hope Elf on a Shelf doesn’t come to make me stick my foot in my mouth next year.)
3. “Baby It’s Cold Outside” – Again – the skeeze factor gets me on this song. I don’t want to stay – quit trying to talk me into it! Didn’t you know my sister will be suspicious??
2. “Christmas Shoes” – Nothing tests my radio reflexes like the first four bars of this song. Lock me in a room and make me listen to “Butterfly Kisses” all day long – just don’t make me listen, ever, ever again, to It’s Christmas Eve and these shoes are just her size…
1. A Christmas Story – hands down the most depressing movie I’ve ever seen. And was forced as a child to watch over. and over. and over. Despite the season. Despite my hatred. I might be traumatized…and a little bitter.
Rachel’s Top 10 Christmas Likes:
10. Reindeer Antlers and Noses on Cars – I don’t own a pair of these, but if I did, My Pilot would wear them proudly.
Chris bought a set of these for me last year after I wrote this post – and someone stole one of my antlers during my maiden voyage. So now, due to the bitterness in my heart toward The Thief of my Christmas Joy, I kinda despise them.
9. Multicolored Lights – I get all you white-lighted Christmas tree people – it looks elegant and aesthetically excellent. But nothing is cheerier than 11pm, kids quietly in bed, mocha in hand, snuggled with the hubby, lights out, gazing at the colors of the Christmas tree with squinty eyes in order to make them shoot all over the living room.
Also, they look pretty good on dollhouses.
As a note, I’ve just discovered what makes my friend Ashley’s tree so brilliant: she puts white AND colored lights on her tree. White to make it glow, and colored to make it cheery. I will be trying this next year.
8. Miracle on 34th Street (both versions) – This movie just makes me happy.
7. Christmas Jammies – Which reminds me – I need to go to the store NOW and find some for my kids!!! SAVE THE LAST TWO PAIRS FOR MEEEEE!!!
6. Wrapping Presents – I may have mentioned this particular obsession last week…
The thought of wrapping presents this year is severely stressing me out. So I’m striking it from my list, and replacing it with:
6. Noëlle – This is the only Christmas movie I own (Chris may own Christmas Vacation but I certainly do not.) It also might be the only movie that makes me cry every single time I watch it.
(Well, that and Hope Floats.)
5. “Oh Holy Night”, “What Child is This”, and “O Come O Come Emmanuel” – Put these three songs together in a Medley, and I’d probably float away with bliss.
As a very important note, the best Christmas Song ever sung is Andrea Bocelli and Mary J Blige’s What Child is This. Seriously. The BEST.
4. “Mary Did You Know” – I’ll never get over this being my all-time favorite Christmas song. Or the fact that Mark Lowry wrote it.
3. Christmas-Flavored Coffee Creamers – The only difficult part is deciding every morning whether I want Pumpkin Spice, Warm Cinnamon Sugar Cookie, Gingerbread Latte, or Brown Sugar Maple Latte. Yes, we have all of them at once. And no, I don’t care if every one of them is filled with artificial dipotassium phosphate. I ADORE THEM.
2. A Real Tree – This subject has been the source of many “conversations” throughout mine and Chris’ married life. He grew up fake, I grew up genuine. We all know what’s best.
1. Hearing The Christmas Story Read Aloud by my Husband – there’s something warm and supernatural that happens in my soul when I hear the first sentence… “And it came to pass in those days that a decree went out from Caesar Augustus…”
What are your most passionate Christmas tradition likes and dislikes?