Lists: My Essential Christmas Classics

Here is a list of the top ten Christmas specials I most want to watch every year. I’ve left off feature-length movies as I’m not interested in watching those every year…it’d take up too much time! I love Santa Claus: The Movie, The Bishop’s Wife and Love Actually as much as I love some of the shows below, but I only watch a couple holiday movies per year. A nice Christmas special, however, you can watch as background while wrapping or during dinner.

Here are my Christmas essentials:

10. The Little Drummer Boy- Often included as an addon episode when you buy another holiday classic, I feel the Little Drummer Boy can stand on its own. I’m not religious, but I very much enjoy this cartoon that gives another Christmas story besides one involving Santa or family gatherings (as much as I love both). It’s a touching tale and always has a spot on my list. I couldn’t find a clip of this on Youtube that doesn’t spoil the ending, so there’s no clip with this one.

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9. Twas the Night Before Christmas- My mother’s favorite, Twas the Night Before Christmas is inspired by the poem, but is a full-length story with mice. It’s cute, Christmassy, and has some excellent music. Here’s a clip from the middle that really tells you what the story is about and has a great song.

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8. A Wish That Changed Christmas- This deserves a spot on my list because I have fond memories of watching this with my sister. We still say “Do you want a balloon?” to each other (a line from the movie). It’s cute and heartwarming. Here’s the first couple minutes.

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7. Opus: A Wish for Wings That Work- Funny and slightly more adult than other Christmas specials, I feel this one is often overlooked. The ending is still heartwarming and has the Christmas spirit. This click is Opus’s Therapy Session.

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6. A Claymation Christmas- Claymation is amazing to watch. Claymation Christmas is also funny and educational (sort of) as it does have references to traditions and classic Christmas music. It’s got a lot of puns, wordplay, and jokes more on the clever side. Here’s a clip of the Carol of the Bells.

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5. A Muppet Family Christmas- ALL THE MUPPETS….even Fraggles and the Sesame Street. I love how they are all shoved into one house! Did you hear about the church that burned down? Holy Smokes! Here’s a clip of Big Bird and the Swedish Chef.

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4. A Charlie Brown Christmas- Of course the Peanuts have to make it on the list. I love Charlie Brown’s tree, and the speech Linus gives. And I love the music.

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3. A Garfield Christmas Special- I think it’s one of the best Garfield shows I’ve seen. I love the emotional scene with Grandma. I also love how much food they make and how it seems like a normal family…loving, but with their flaws. It makes me feel at home.

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2. Santa Claus is Coming to Town- It has Fred Astaire. As a kid, I loved the Fred and Ginger movies and I think my love for Fred is what made me adore this movie. I love all the characters, actually, and I like how it is an origin story. This link will show you a clip of Fred Astaire’s character.

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1. Year Without a Santa Claus- This special had a slight edge over the others in the list because it has one of my favorite Christmas songs. No, it’s not the Heat/Snow Miser song (though that’s a fun one), it’s “I Believe in Santa Claus“. It has always spoken to me. I love Santa and I still “believe”. Christmas magic is very important to me, and this song embodies that idea. I’m listening now and tearing up, LOL. The link will take you to the clip with the song.

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Honorable Mentions: Mickey’s Christmas Carol, Frosty the Snowman, Rudolph the Red-nosed Reindeer, How the Grinch Stole Christmas, and Jack Frost.

Supernatural Struggles

I’ve been actively trying to watch more television shows. There are so many good shows out there and I’m sick of missing out on important pop culture references.

We don’t have cable, and we don’t watch any shows on a regular basis. We are Netflix/Hulu people all the way.

Shows we are currently watching:

Doctor Who- For when we have a full hour of free time.

My Name is Earl- For when we have just enough time to watch something while we eat dinner

X-Files- For when we are feeling lazy or nostalgic (we’ve both already seen the show, but it was a long time ago)

The Walking Dead- A show we were caught up on (by Netflix standards), but another season was posted on Netflix recently

Haven- For when we have both enough time and motivation to hook up my laptop to the television, LOL…we only have a couple episodes left…we really need to muster that energy to get it done.

And finally…we need one main-event 40 minute show that we watch with dinner on a nightly basis…not too long, not too short, doesn’t require the laptop, etc…

A couple months ago, we chose the show Supernatural for this purpose. My mom, stepdad and sister all love the show, along with a couple friends. It has made it for 9 seasons, and it’s 10th and final season is already scheduled. There are many, many cons and meetups dedicated to the show. It has an intense cult following. I figured there has to be something there, right?

During the first half of season 1, I wanted to like it, but I couldn’t get attached to the characters and too many things bugged me about the show. They drove across the country, but had no source of income; and they broke all kinds of laws and paid minimal consequences. I will suspend my skeptical brain for an alternate universe that contains supernatural critters, but this was just asking too much.

My family and friends who like the show, told me to hang in there. Specifically, one of my friends, Jon, said to hang on until the second meeting with Meg and the demonic activity really starts. So, we hung on…watching way more X-Files than we had planned to.

I’m happy to report our friends were correct. We are now in the middle of Season 2 and loving it. I’m still not as attached to the characters as I would like, but the side characters show promise, the story is interesting, the pop culture references are fantastic, and the musical choices are perfect. Yay!

Currently Watching…

::sigh:::

I just reached the end of the first season of Doctor Who…and it’s time for a new doctor. I don’t handle changes in casting well. I get too attached. I’m afraid I’ll have a difficult time appreciating the next Doctor because I’ll be comparing him to the first (one I saw, I know he’s the ninth, but he’s *my* first).

But, the damn show is addictive. I didn’t anticipate liking it…I don’t like science fiction all that much. But, I do enjoy British shows…particularly due to their taste in humor, which is why I decided to give Doctor Who a go. It’s been 2 weeks since I’ve started…14 days exactly…and I’ve seen 13 episodes. I’m averaging almost an episode a day. Addiction.

If you are also a fan of the series, please tell me…how long did it take you to fall in love with the Tenth Doctor? Please tell me it was fast.

Other television interests…

– I watched 3 episodes of the Walking Dead a couple weeks ago and I was enjoying it…but then I found Doctor Who. I plan to return to it, though.

– I’ve watched the first episode or two of Castle, Bones and Once Upon a Time. I haven’t kept up to date with them, though (because I found Doctor Who). I won’t let them expire from my queue- they’ll be watched…just not now (because I…well, you know).

– I watched the first episode of Chicago Fire….I remain perplexed as to why I watched it. It’s in my queue…but I don’t know if I’ll get back to it.

– I have a severe Haven backlog in my queue because Jimmy & I haven’t been able to watch anything together in while.

– Fairly Legal was cancelled. 😦 So bummed. Such good characters. Much witty banter. Will miss terribly.

– But FL getting canceled, just reminds me that Body of Proof was NOT cancelled, despite the mediocre ratings…so that will start appearing in my queue midseason.

As you can tell, my queue is gigantic. I watch too many shows…but I don’t watch them often enough. Until I found Doctor Who (why does that man keep creeping into all my sentences? Addiction), I was averaging about one 1-hour show a week. Thank goodness shows repeat themselves some weeks. And thank goodness Thanksgiving is coming, so I can catch up. Although…the new Sims expansion will be out by then; also I’ll probably end up watching more (okay, all together now) Doctor Who!

Fall Show Countdown

It’s almost labor day weekend! Fall is my favorite season for many reasons…pumpkins, fall colors, leaves changing, cool weather, hoodies, pumpkin seeds, apples, applesauce, Halloween, school supplies…the list goes on and on.

And… most of the good shows come back to television! Therefore, it’s time to get organized so I don’t miss any premieres! Okay, so that’s not true since I only watch television via Hulu….but I still need want to know when shows are coming back to me.

Returning Shows I’m Planning on Watching:

Castle- September 19th: Glad this one is starting so soon! My favorite currently-on-air show.

Bones- November 3rd: Ugh! Why so late?

Body of Proof- September 20th

Fairly Legal- Early 2012

Harry’s Law- September 21st

Fringe- September 23rd

House- October 3rd: I don’t know if I’m going to watch this or not. I didn’t even bother with the season finale last season…I’m losing interest.

New Shows I May Try:

Now it’s time to check out Hulu’s list of new shows this season and see if anything is appealing…this list I will try at least one episode of…

New Girl- She’s adorable.

Once Upon a Time- It’s a really neat idea. I can’t say “no” to a creepy show about fairy tales! Addendum- spoke too soon…I’m not digging “Grimm”…and why on earth are there two creepy shows about fairy tales?

Terra Nova- Dinosaurs.

Prime Suspect- ‘Cause I like detective shows.