Saturday, December 27, 2008

Melancholy Christmas Songs

Riding and singing in the car

Christmas day on the new tricycle

I have a special love for sad, bittersweet Christmas songs. Once I started searching for them, I noticed there are many. That makes sense I guess. After all, Christmas never matches all of our hopes and expectations after the age of about five or six. Once you begin to doubt Santa, a whole new stage of life and view of Christmas begins. One of the first hard lessons is that life is not fair, but we have to find a way to make the best of it anyway. So here is my list of favorite Christmas songs. You may not have heard of all of them.

1. Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas
Perferably Judy Garland's or Frank Sinatra's versions

2. I'll be Home for Christmas - The soldier's homesick Christmas song. Frank Sinatra?

3. Blue Christmas - Elvis, of course

4. Please Come Home for Christmas - Bluesy, Rocky, Don't remember the first artist, but I love the Eagles version

5. If We Make it through December - Merle Haggard. Popular when I was broke, newly married and a new mom

6. Hard Candy Christmas - Dolly Parton. Technically not a Christmas song, but I love it anyway

7. Pretty Paper - Willy Nelson. Not really one of my favorites, but I do love Willie.

I know there are more. What's the one that ends with Auld Lang Sine? I know this is spelled wrong and can't think of the title of the song right now.

Other favorite Christmas songs remind me of my children and have now been taken over by my grandchildren. We love to sing them in the car.

1. Old Toy Trains - Roger Miller. Popular the Christmas my son was two years old (1973). I used to rock and sing to him and he would "sing" along. Later I sang it for Jaime. I got a CD a couple of years ago and when Jonah and Jill heard this story, they begged to hear it over and over again and we always sang it in the car.

2. Grandma Got Run Over by a Reindeer - Popular for obvious reasons, but my mother especially loved this song. The kids sing it at the top of their lungs.

3. Jingle Bell Rock - Bobby Helms. Our favorite for 2008. The radio station had a contest to win $1,000 if they played it twice in a row. We didn't win, but we sang it anyway. I even heard little Mia singing it to herself yesterday.

4. Rockin' Around the Christmas Tree - Brenda Lee. Our other Christmas favorite to sing to. Sometimes we get it mixed up with #3.

I will try to figure out how to attach a url for one of these songs.

Friday, December 26, 2008

Merry Christmas

Jonah's best present. There is a baby gecko in there if you look carefully.

Nibbles and Squeaky Toy

Mia and robot

Karin, Alan and Joyce

Jill with cookies


Connor and Vannon and stockings

Christmas morning tree.

Christmas mantel

Christmas Eve dinner

Christmas chandelier and Santa Elf

We had a happy Christmas Eve day with many friends and family. I literally cooked for two straight days and managed to not get stressed out. I WAS worried about where to put all the people and the two dogs who were coming. And the noise. With the parquet floors, sounds in this house tend to ECHO. But everyone helped. People just came in and started setting up, washing dishes, helping with the last minute cooking and putting it on the buffet table. Without this help, I could not have managed. Thank you to everyone. Somehow it all worked out. Of course, Jaime did everything including cooking a beautiful prime rib. We both think she is the reincarnation of my mother who was the queen of everything Christmas. It kind of skipped a generation with me so thank you, Jaime.
We also had phone calls from Roger's children and grandchildren up in Michigan in blizzard conditions. Martin made the most of it by going skiing and April and Ken and the kids got through the snow to spend Christmas with her mom and grandma. Cory and Troy called, too. They all thought it was funny when I told them Floridians sometimes truck in snow and people line up to play in it. It's true!
Merry Christmas everyone!

Monday, December 22, 2008

White Christmas

Here is our Florida version of a white Christmas. Fog. If you look closely at the top picture you will see two golf carts. The crazy golfers were trying to play. I heard them calling to each other to find the CART. Don't know how they found the golf ball!

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Visits to Santa

Briel and Santa

Jonah and Jill with Pinky and the scooter

Sean, Mia, Jaime and Jonah

Mia not so happy about Santa

Jonah visits him "just in case ..."

Jill - Starstruck!

Christmas House

Santa visited our neighborhood last night at the house with all the lights, just a short walk across the golf course. Karin and Alan came and Cory (Jill's dad) was here. I picked up Jill and Jonah since Mia and her friend Briel were still taking a nap. On the way over, Jill said, "My tummy feels funny." She was very nervous at actually meeting Santa in person. There were no lines and no busy mall and no charge for taking pictures. Jonah rode his scooter across the golf course and along the sidewalk. Even though it is used, he loves it and can do tricks on it already. Except for some family drama, everything went pretty well. Jill was awestruck and loved the pink elephant Santa gave her. She named him "Pinky". Jonah acted way too grown up to see Santa but finally relented and seemed to enjoy himself. His mom and I both encouraged him to talk to Santa "just in case". Later, Jaime and Sean brought Mia and Briel by to see Santa, too.