Cheer and Loathing

It’s that time of year again. All I want on Black Friday is Nat King Cole’s “The Christmas Song” on repeat (and a masterpiece sandwich harmoniously stuffed with leftovers). I’m giddy with nostalgia for Ugly Sweater Christmas soirees, Celestial Seasoning’s Sugar Cookie Sleigh Ride tea, the first snowfall, finally buying that perfect present I thought of back in August, the ornaments I made in elementary school that only a mother could love, roaring fires, glitzy head-turning party frocks, spicy mulled wine, the spectacular Bergdorf Goodman windows, gingerbread houses too pretty to eat, peppermint bark with chunks of candy cane, a month off from school (which means more face time at the O2O headquarters!), sledding until my toes are numb, feeling like I’m ten years old again, and the unmistakable magic of holiday spirit in the air.

Cut to three weeks later – I’m bedraggled by frenzied crowds, misplaced gift receipts, a crooked tree, neighbors one-upping my decorations, mile-long lines, gift wrap paper cuts, caramel brulée latte sugar crashes, slippery sidewalk wipeouts, a puppy who thinks the holly garland is a new toy, and loved ones calling to remind me how “impossible” I am to shop for.

Let’s just say the same seasonal tunes following me around in every TV commercial, shopping mall, department store, skating rink, Festival of Lights, and Starbucks don’t help in maintaining my sanity. I swear I’m not a Scrooge, but by December 26th even Buddy the Elf is happy to be free from “Jingle Bell Rock” for an entire year. (Side note: I really wish I owned the royalties to that ditty).

So, below are five festive songs that might not be in your holiday playlist rotation. But they should be. Because my Nana gets really offended when “Grandma Got Run Over By A Reindeer” comes on. And the melody to “Carol of the Bells” is, well, redundant. And “Feliz Navidad” makes it abundantly clear how little high school Spanish I’ve retained.

These tracks are in good company alongside the standard time-honored classics and will keep that warm-and-fuzzy comfort and joy going strong amid the holiday hustle-and-bustle.


  1. I love The Weepies! But I don’t have that song…must go download on iTunes!

    Once again, your playlist rocks my {Christmas} socks. Love your taste in music, Maryellen!

  2. Also, every year, I make it my mission to avoid hearing “Christmas Shoes” and “Last Christmas” by Wham. So far this year, I’ve avoided the first and only caught the opening bars of the second.

  3. My top fave christmas songs; not necessarily in order:

    “All I Want For Christmas” Mariah Carey
    “The 12 Pains Of Christmas” – have no idea who sings it – love it
    “Christmas Is The Time To Say I Love You” Billy Squier (showin’ my age now..)
    “Do They Know It’s Christmas? – Band Aid (classic!!!)
    “Please Come Home For Christmas” – anyone who sings it, particularly my kid..

    And there’s just some songs that make you want to run screaming for the hills. I won’t list as to not offend!!

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