We all have special Christmas and holiday season memories from our childhood. For me many of those memories are centered around holiday movies and TV specials, and I’m guessing I’m not alone.
When I was little, I remember every year watching Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer on Christmas Eve. It wasn’t Christmas until I got to enjoy Rudolph’s story of misfits triumphing over hardship—though I’m sure at that age I just thought it was all cute. I love Rudolph to this day, and it frustrates me that they now play him as soon after Thanksgiving as they can manage.
Something else I remember as a small child was the Bing Crosby Christmas special—another vital part of every Christmas. After Bing died, for the longest time Christmas just didn’t feel right. This was probably my earliest introduction to the wonders of Bing Crosby and Christmas. When I was a little older I discovered White Christmas and Holiday Inn and I was in love—not only with the wonderful music, but with Bing and his partners Danny Kaye in White Christmas and Fred Astaire in Holiday Inn.
Around that time I also discovered It’s A Wonderful Life. I’m pretty sure I cried the first hundred times I saw that one. Watching those three movies was a part of every Christmas for myself and my siblings until we all moved away. Now I only get to see them now and then as my own children have their own Christmas favorites.
When my kids were little, along with introducing them to the classics like Rudolph, Charlie Brown Christmas, and Frosty the Snowman, they enjoyed new favorites like Garfield’s Christmas (something that is still a must see for us every year), Barney’s various Christmas specials, Thomas the Tank Engine, Bob the Builder, Winnie the Pooh, Mickey’s Christmas Carol, and I’m sure there were many more. Eventually they graduated to newer holiday movies like Jingle All the Way and Elf.
Another favorite of mine, and now my children’s as well, is the classic story of A Christmas Carol. While we have enjoyed many incarnations through the years, the one that is still a must see each Christmas is Patrick Stewart’s incredible version—come on you can’t beat Captain Picard as Scrooge!
Being not only a mystery writer, but also a mystery fan, many of my Christmases have also included a couple mystery Christmas favorites such as Sherlock Holmes and the Blue Carbuncle, and Poirot’s Christmas.
I’m sure there are many others I have missed mentioning. I have so many special memories with my siblings, and later on my own children, watching all these wonders of the holiday season. The holidays still aren’t complete without getting in a few of these treasures. Sure it’s TV and movies, but I’d hazard to guess that they are a big part of most of our Christmases, and really it’s more about who you watch them with then just watching them.
Why not share some of your favorites! Perhaps we will all discover some new holiday treasures to share with those we love!