No really, it is.
Despite my desire to celebrate one holiday at a time, the Christmas season is my favorite time of year. Everything is bright, shiny, and covered with sparkles. And what kind of girl doesn’t like sparkles? I love the movies, the TV specials, the photo cards from friends and family, the sense of togetherness, everything. It’s just a magical time. And it’s only just begun.
For the Home Shopper:
My mailbox gets overloaded this time of year with catalogs from dozens of retailers. You’ve got your classic standards (Sharper Image, Land’s End, Sephora), your foodies (Harry & David, Cheryl’s, Hickory Farms), and then your obscure (Uncommon Goods, Solutions, Pyramid Collection). Every day, it seems like there is a new one to add to the collection.
Catalogs are such a great way to get gift ideas without the pressure of salespeople or the crowds that are in stores. You can browse at your leisure and find things you never knew you would love so much. I have found many a gift by browsing through a catalog. I’m still on the hunt for some folks left on my shopping list and these little helpers lead to some fantastic ideas I would have never even considered. Plus, almost all catalogs have a promo code for free shipping or discounts. And who doesn’t love a discount?
For the Ears:
Radio stations are already playing nonstop holiday music and I have my own playlist of hundreds –yes, hundreds—of my favorite tunes for decorating the house, baking Christmas cookies, or wrapping presents. Any of Amy Grant’s holiday albums are top-notch and my particular favorite is her first, A Christmas Album, which brings back fond memories of trimming the tree with my mom. But I truly have everything on that holiday playlist from the timeless classics to strange duets (David Bowie/Bing Crosby, John Denver/The Muppets) to a few Hanukkah songs. I even have dirty Christmas songs for crying out loud. Did you even know they make dirty Christmas songs? I didn’t until I discovered them after a night of drinking too many energy drinks in college. I blame the extreme amount of caffeine for my decision to download.
But my favorite songs, the ones that really make me smile and sing at the top of my lungs like a crazy person are the quirky ones. That’s right. The quirky ones. Every year, I find a new tune that I’ve never heard of that cracks me up to no end. Last year, it was “The Christmas Mash” (just like “The Monster Mash” thought not nearly as good) by Threshold. The year before, “Dominick the Donkey” by Doug Kershaw about Santa’s Italian Christmas donkey who can “climb the hills of Italy.” My absolute favorite though is, drum roll please… “I Want a Hippopotamus for Christmas” by Gayle Peevey. If you’ve never heard it before, check out the fun video below.
For the Kids of All Ages:
They line the shelves of practically every store from Bed Bath and Beyond to Rite Aid. It’s the singing and dancing animatronic figure toy! I love to go into stores and press all of the buttons to hear “Jingle Bells” or “Frosty the Snowman” sung by a stuffed choir, much to the chagrin of those around me. These toys are getting so much more advanced than I remember as a child. They light up, sing multiple songs, and dance. They never danced when I was a kid!
A few years ago, someone in my office had a turkey on her desk that was about the most amazing one of these toys I’ve ever seen. He carried a guitar, played “Feliz Navidad” while his cheeks lit up and his head bobbed back and forth and side to side. It. Was. Awesome. I only had to watch him once or twice to fall completely in love with this silly little creature. My coworker noticed how much I adored the crazy bird and was nice enough to leave the turkey in my good hands. I have since named him José after José Feliciano (the original singer of the song) and he works as a full-time coin jar guard during the year until it is time to bring him out for all to see.
Even though I love my turkey, there is still a figure I have always wanted, but every year, for whatever reason, I talk myself out of getting one.
Yep, I have my sights on a “Hava Nagila” singing rabbi. And I’m not even Jewish. I’m not sure why I want a rabbi as much as I do, but I think it goes back to a Gilmore Girls episode. Regardless of where my obsession came from for this coveted Jew, it’s there and it’s not going away. Wonderlings, if any of you have a rabbi that needs a good home, I would love to adopt him. I would make a great mother.
Just ask José.