Bruce, how could you?

Bruce, how could you?

Bruce Willis is all over the news this week after he declared that Die Hard, celebrating its 30th anniversary this year, is not a Christmas movie. This has roiled the ranks of movie fans everywhere because it is one of the classic debates of both Christmas and movies. Let me share with you a true story, a story that takes us back more than 30 years ago before Die Hard was made. Even though I have been writing about Christmas since we began here in 1991 I’ve only shared this story once, last year during an episode of Tim Babb’sRead more

Tis the Season for Christmas Weirdos

Tis the Season for Christmas Weirdos

Once upon a time The Atlantic wrote of our merry website “they’re weirdos”. It was a swipe at the year round celebration of Christmas and of those who “took Christmas to the hobbyist” level. What other holiday, they asked, has such a following? Indeed. The groupies of Christmas are many: there are the Christmas light fanatics, the professional Santas, the Christmas radio geeks, the year-round Christmas music freaks, the Christmas collectors, the Christmas historians, the Christmas foodies, and the Christmas organizers. There are so many sub-groups that embrace the specialties of Christmas we cannot even begin to enlist them all.Read more

2018 Postage Stamps to Feature Traditional Santa

2018 Postage Stamps to Feature Traditional Santa

The United States Postal Service announced today the first of their new holiday stamps for 2018, this year featuring the traditional images of Santa Claus as envisioned by Haddon Sundblom. The images were an effective marketing campaign by the Coca Cola Company, who has long used the image of Santa Claus in combination with their traditional red and white colors to advertise during the holiday season. The stamps — sure to be as popular as the Charlie Brown Christmas stamps of 2015 — will be issued as Forever Stamps and will likely be released in early October in concert withRead more

History of Leon Day

History of Leon Day

Look out folks – it is almost Leon Day. It is, by all accounts, an obscure day to many. But Leon Day is now coming out of the shadows. Literally millions mark the day now. The 25th of June – previously unremarkable in every way – is a huge day on the calendar for anyone who considers themselves a true fan of Christmas: it is Leon Day. Leon is Noel, spelled backwards. Leon Day marks the exact halfway point to Christmas. Leon Day is a Christmas phenomenon born of Christmas socializing online. Long before the advent of Facebook and otherRead more

Tis the Season for Christmas Movies

Tis the Season for Christmas Movies

A new survey commissioned by MyMerryChristmas.com has determined that 46 percent of annual Christmas movie watching happens between Memorial Day and Labor Day. The survey, conducted over a three day period offline in 7 American cities, reveals some surprising facts about summer Christmas movie watching in America. More than 1 in 3 Americans will see something Christmas-related at home during the dog days of summer and of those a whopping 82 percent watch a Christmas-themed show on purpose. The primary reason people watch so much Christmas during the off-season? Simple. There just isn’t time to see it all when itRead more

Why White Christmas is the Greatest American Christmas Song Ever

Why White Christmas is the Greatest American Christmas Song Ever

White Christmas is the greatest American Christmas song ever written. Many know the tune but few know the story of who wrote it. The world has quietly marked the 130th birthday of the song writer whose contributions to the 20th century songbook cannot be understated. His life, especially in regards to his family, was filled with heartbreaking tragedy. He was born Izzy Baline in 1888, the son of Russian Jews struggling to make it in a country filled with persecution against Jews. He lost his father when he was only 8. That made his life of poverty more difficult thanRead more

Why the Tax Man is My Santa Claus

Why the Tax Man is My Santa Claus

As a high school senior I was lucky enough to enjoy a part time school schedule that allowed me to work a lot of hours. The plan was to save up as much as I could for college. It worked, too. But the biggest shock of my life came in the spring of my freshman year when it came time to do my taxes. I received what to me was a huge sum of money back from the tax man – a little more than $700. Naturally, being young and without the limits of my parents that money was goneRead more

Ending Christmas Too Soon

Ending Christmas Too Soon

In a world where “Christmas Creep” has become a thing nary a word is said about the abrupt end of Christmas. Ending Christmas each year happens without warning and absent of ceremony. I was aghast to see on Facebook a friend who had tossed their tree to the curb on the evening of December 25th. Being charitable, my first thought was “maybe it was really dry”. No. They bragged about it! “We are the first to de-Christmasify the house on our street.” they said. To them it was an accomplishment – a badge of honor, a gold star ripped from theRead more

88 Keys + 500,000 Lights + Three Ships = Christmas

88 Keys + 500,000 Lights + Three Ships = Christmas

Jon Schmidt of The Piano Guys replays an old favorite from a long ago solo-album and gives it a fresh spin with, oh, half a million Christmas lights. Take a look and a listen: I Saw Three Ships is an old English carol that makes almost no sense. How can three ships sail into Bethlehem when it is so far away from any body of water? Some believe the song is actually a nod to the Three Wisemen. Regardless, it’s a Christmas tune and it has long belonged to Jon Schmidt who takes it to bouncy new heights in thisRead more

How Social Media is Killing Christmas Tradition

How Social Media is Killing Christmas Tradition

Social media is killing Christmas. There. I said it. What you are about to read is what they call a rant. It is also harsh truth. Brutal reality. You’ve been warned, snowflakes. As far as Christmas traditions go Christmas cards are not the most traditional thing going. Dating back only to the mid-19th century, Christmas cards emerged as a love child of technology and progress. That is the irony of Christmas cards now. The same thing that created Christmas cards is killing it – if you can indeed call technology progress. Christmas cards were possible thanks to advances in printing.Read more