I’ve always loved Christmas, and I still do.  I find myself, sometimes without conscious knowledge, belting out carols to my family’s dismay.  I know and love all the standards, even second and third verses, where my family is quite certain I’m making up the words.  They are ingrained in my brain, maybe even my DNA.  They make me happy.  They fill me with the spirit of Christmas.  They remind me of being a kid, singing in the annual Christmas pageant or sitting around my parent’s player piano, pretending to hit every note in Silver Bells or Good King Wenceslas.  Yes, my parent’s had a player piano.  I think this is where I learned many of the songs and their respective second, third and even lesser known fourth versus.  But my kids don’t share my love of Christmas carols…yet.  Sure, they know Jingle Bells, Deck the Halls, Santa Claus is Coming to Town, but that’s about it.  I find it strange and somewhat unsettling.  With the advent of technology, I was able to copy some of my most loved carols onto our MP3 player, filling our home with the sounds of Bing Crosby, Mitch Miller, Vince Guaraldi, Burl Ives and John Denver.  Slowly and with the assistance of osmosis, the spirit of Christmas started to seep into the family.  Before I knew it, my daughter was carrying around the MP3 player from room to room as she helped me decorate.  I noticed she developed a penchant for Vince Guaraldi (Charlie Brown Christmas) and a few Burl Ives songs.  Now, she wasn’t singing along as I tend to, but I could see the transformation and cell mutation as “Holly Jolly Christmas” blared from the top of the stairs.

As with everything in life, as a parent, it’s up to us to teach and share our morals, ethics, traditions, joys, mistakes, etc. with our kids.  Now, don’t get me started on Christmas shows.  One thing at a time.  Perhaps I’ll tackle that next year.  Holiday Inn, Miracle on 34th Street, Emmet Otter’s Jug Band Christmas, the Snowman, etc.  I can hardly wait!

“Whatever else be lost among the years,

Let us keep Christmas still a shining thing:

Whatever doubts assail us, or what fears,

Let us hold close one day, remembering

Its poignant meaning for the hearts of men.

Let us get back our child like faith again.”

– Grace Noll Crowell

Best wishes,

Kim Sweeney