December has begun. The welcomed white winter has finally hit our driveways and we get all bundled up to scrape them clean. The wife and kids are out in the yard throwing snowballs at each other and the dog is bouncing back and forth hoping to catch one of them. Scarves are blowing in the wind as the family’s hot chocolate is steaming and quickly getting cold on the front steps. The sun begins to set early and the family eagerly runs inside to get warm by the crackling fire. The air is filled with pine as the kids leave their snow prints through the living room realizing they haven’t hung up their favorite ornament yet. Once the star is hung and dinner has been inhaled around the table, the family sits close on the couch and puts in their favorite Christmas movie.
Movies are what brought us together in a sense and I’ve always remembered that.
There’s something magical about Christmas. It’s a time for family, reflection, and warm hearts. But to set the mind and heart off in the right direction there needs to be a match to start the fire. For most, it’s the soft white flakes of frozen happiness falling from the sky. For others, it’s the jolly bouncing music you have been hearing your entire life. But for me, it’s the movies. I’ve mentioned a little bit of this in every Christmas movie post I’ve ever done, but I am not from a winter wonderland. I did not grow up with family all around. And the holiday time did not come with many matches to push us together. I grew up in a dry and warm part of Texas. Our Decembers mostly consisted of staring at dead trees outside while in shorts on a lawn chair. There was nothing special about winter. Winter Wonderland sounded as fictitious as Santa Claus. (Sorry kids if I just ruined that for you…) If and when we ever found snow falling from a bleak sky, we were as excited as our black lab Dino (yes, like the Flintstones) to play in it because we knew it was a fluke and it would never happen again.
Don’t get me wrong, I love my family and I’ve lead a very blessed life. But Christmas was something I wanted to get lost in. I wanted to feel those waves of joyful winters blow through me and my metaphorical walls and hit me straight in the gonads of my heart. But it was difficult when I never could look out my window and see what has been engrained in me as a perfect Christmas time setting. So, what did I do to push me into the spirit every year? Movies. (Of course it’s movies, where did you think I was going with this?) It was a tradition in my family to sit around the table at Thanksgiving and after we pray and eat…(and watch the Cowboys game)…we popped in The Santa Clause or Jingle All The Way while we brought the tree down from the attic and decorate it all together. Movies are what brought us together in a sense and I’ve always remembered that.
There’s something magical about Christmas.
So throughout December I love to watch all Christmas movies, good or bad because it means something to me. It means that I can forcefully dream of a white Christmas and push my mind to bring all the magic that the holiday time deserves to be had. But something interesting happened in my life this past year. I got married and moved to be closer to her family. And where did I move you ask? Minneapolis, Minnesota. Yeah, somewhere that I don’t quite have the skills for surviving a winter. But REGARDLESS! I’m actually going to experience some sort of Christmas that I keep seeing in every movie! Merry Christmas, you wonderful old Building and Loan!
Yes, I’m excited about it this year. But I have to thank the captivating and wondrous world of Christmas movies. While they flood the movie market and our TV’s every December, there are those that are a part of film history…and therefore our history. A Charlie Brown Christmas, A Christmas Story, and (my absolute favorite aka the reigning champion) It’s a Wonderful Life are played every year on Christmas Eve on TV! Think about it! What is Christmas without these movies?! Much like I want to experience every Christmas I’ll ever have with my wife, these movies will be there too. And that means something to me. To everyone!
Christmas isn’t Christmas without the movies. And whether we turn our noses up at them or not, they’ll always be there for us making our holidays even more special. What is your favorite movie and why? What does it mean to you?