Tuesday, September 22, 2009

I will let you in on a little secret.....CHRISTMAS!!!!!

So there is one thing about me that sets me apart from many people.   Some people think its awesome, some people dislike my love for it.   Christmas. (94 days away)  I love it so much.  I love a lot of the parts that other people overlook.  I enjoy getting presents, don't get me wrong, and I enjoy spending time with my family and friends, but in my opinion the best part of Christmas starts Oct. 1.

Yes, that is correct, I believe that the Christmas season begins on Oct. 1st, and I plan on explaining.  When October arrives, you got Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas-BAM, BAM, BAM. If you blink, you missed the best part of Christmas.  I have never celebrated Halloween really, so I kinda blow past that holiday without too much pain.  I do love Thanksgiving, it reminds me of dinner at my grandmothers house, in Arcanum, and eating the best food in the world while watching football with my dad's side of the family.  I do give the few days before Thanksgiving its due, but man the next 95 days are the best days out of the year.

First off, my favorite part of the Holiday Season is the spirit of giving.  Nothing beats watching people running to their cars while snow is falling and seeing them with big smiles.  It doesnt matter how much you spend or where you got your gift for someone, all that matters is that thought went into it, and you know that whoever you got it for, will gasp with delight and thrill.  People sometimes start shopping in the middle of the summer for gifts, which has good intentions, but its not the same buying Christmas gifts in shorts and a t-shirt.  Half of the fun is bundling up, battling the weather, and searching for that one gift that will make that special someone's eyes glow with excitement. 

Christmas lights, love them!  To be honest, I moved to Sidney a few months ago, and already have my Christmas light mounting pieces already put up...  All I have to do is take the boxed up lights off the garage work-bench and put them up, it would take me 5-10 minutes, tops.  It always brings out the kid in me when I drive around and look at Christmas lights, especially with a light snow falling or on the ground.

It also is a good feeling to hear the Salvation Army's bells ringing as you walk into stores.  Not only for its good intentions and tradition, but just to hear the bell ringing, subconsciously, reminds me of the bells on Santa's sleigh.  I do respect the people ringing the bells--a lot.  I did it last year and your ears start ringing from the bell, and if you are outside, it gets cold being there for the an extended amount of time.  Christmas wouldnt be the same without that part of it.

Music, nothing beats snow falling, holiday cheer and Nat King Cole singing The Christmas Song.  I have never roasted chestnuts on an open fire, but I have been bitten by Jack Frost on my nose.  Personally, my favorite Christmas talent is Johnny Mathis.  I still remember riding in the family van listening to a cassette tape of Hallelujah Chorus.  Good times.  That is probably my second favorite Christmas song, the first being Carol of the Bells.  Every and all versions of the song are great, there are none that I would turn away from. 

Now my Christmas ritual is pretty strict.  Even though it is strict it is pretty easy.  My Christmas tree will be put up on Oct 1st.  No stopping me, Oct 1st marks the beginning of the Holiday Season, and if you arent prepared, you will miss all of it.  With the tree up, I have that extra time before Christmas to enjoy the other parts that I have come to love.  My girlfriend, Dawn, has petitioned the date of the outside lights, but so far, she only has her signature. (I am still trying to convince Buckeye to take my side, but he is riding the fence currently)  I wouldn't mind putting them up Oct 1st, and I believe I will, but I do hold off on actually lighting them up on a DAILY basis.  No set date on when I light them up on a daily basis, probably should come up with a set date.  I also am excited because my new place has a pillar out front that I intend to wrap in red ribbon to make it look like a candy cane.

Speaking of candy canes, I am impartial to them.  If I have them, I put them on the tree, but I dont find them necessary.  One year when I took the tree down, somehow candy canes found their way into the ordainment box, and wasnt very pretty 9 months later after sitting in the heat of the garage.  I think that is why I am not so fond of them.... but they are slowly making a come-back.

Now when I tell people this, they are like "I bet you are one of those people who leave up the tree until April."  Wrong, it is normally down by New Years.  However, my new place is larger, and I intend on getting a real tree, obviously close to Christmas, so I may keep that one up for a little while longer (I love the pine smell).  Now you may think, well if your artificial tree is up Oct 1st, are you just going to put that one away?  No, absolutely not!  I have a tree for every single room in the house.  Now the other trees are much smaller, less than a foot high, but no matter what room you are in, you will know that Christmas is right around the corner.

A few final thoughts on Christmas.  I always have spent Christmas Eve at my grandmothers house, in Arcanum, since the day I was born.  My dad's side of the family comes over, we eat around noon (again best food in the world, along with her home-made holiday punch), and once all the dishes are washed, we are allowed to open the presents, and let me tell you, Santa leaves a lot at her house!!  That is just customary, and I hope it always stays that way.  Another note, my Christmas tree is decorated in Scarlet and Grey, along with a Santa wearing Buckeye apparel and an OSU cheerleader sitting on his lap.  Brutus also makes an appearance somewhere deep within the bright red and gray ordainment.   I think that is enough for now about Christmas....Feel free to email me, andrewbuckmichael@gmail.com, your thoughts and feelings, and let me know if there is anyone else out there with as much love for the holiday!

Andrew Buck Michael

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