Movie, music, book, etc, Holiday Traditions

My family has two things we do every Christmas that have begun to turn into traditions. They’re not very traditional traditions, however.

One is, on Christmas Day, we go see a movie. We started doing this because the kids get us up early to open presents, and then there’s nothing to do the rest of the day. And the only thing open is movie theaters. We haven’t done it every year, because there’s been family to visit instead, but now that we live far away from most of our families we’ll be doing it again. This year it’ll be A Series of Unfortunate Events.

The other tradition we have is something I started up last year for my husband’s side of the family. I don’t remember how I thought of it, but everyone loved it enough that they want me to do it every year.

I make a mix cd and give every family a copy. My husband’s got 3 siblings, and with all their spouses, kids, our kids, and Daniel’s parents, there are 21 people in the family. I choose a song for each person, and everyone listens to the cd and tries to guess which song is for which person.

This is the tracklist for this year’s mix:

1. Saving Grace – The Cranberries
For 4yo my niece, Grace

2. It’s So Quiet – Bjork
For my 2yo niece, Anna, who is very quiet around strangers but very loud around loved ones

3. Everyday I Write the Book – Elvis Costello
For my s-i-l, who is writing a young adult novel

4. Jake the Peg – Rolf Harris
For my nephew, Jake

5. Mon Pere Disait – Jacques Brel
For my father-in-law, who served a mission in France (translates to "My Father Said")

6. Mongoose – Fu Manchu
For my husband, the surfer/skater/bmxer (the song’s about bmxing–"Mongoose" as in the bike)

7. Love and Mathematics – Broken Social Scene
For my 7yo nephew who is autistic (last year I used "Senses Working Overtime" by XTC, because he has sensory problems, and there’s counting in it)

8. Salt Mines of Santa Monica – Sunday’s Best
For my s-i-l who just moved to Santa Monica

9. Buffalo Soldier – Bob Marley
For my b-i-l who is currently serving in Iraq (he loves reggae)

10. Mom – Earth, Wind, and Fire
For my m-i-l

11. Sound Effects
For my b-i-l, a programmer who makes games for cell phones (the sound effect is a ring tone)

12. Bob the Builder
For my 2 yo nephew whose father is a general contractor, he LOVES dad’s tools

13. It’s All About the Penitiums – Weird Al
For my son who wants an upgrade on his computer so he can play Doom III

14. The Kory Curse – Evergrey
For my nephew Kory

15. Hot For Teacher – Van Halen
For my s-i-l who is going to school for a masters in special education

16. In Front of the Computer – Faith No More
For my son who never budges from his computer

17. Vincent Come On Down – Brainiac
For my nephew, Vincent

18. The Lovecats – The Cure
For my daughter, Cat, who loves cats

19. If I Had a Hammer – Peter, Paul and Mary
For my b-i-l the general contractor

20. Sleepy Maggie – Ashley MacIsaac
For my niece Maggie

21. Your Song – Elton John
This one is mine–"You can tell everybody this is your song"

What are your media holiday traditions? Do you read something every year, watch a certain movie? I think when I was a kid, every year they’d show the Wizard of Oz on New Year’s, and we’d always watch it. And every year, I’d hide my face when the witch’s legs curled up under the house.

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2 thoughts on “Movie, music, book, etc, Holiday Traditions

  1. We wrap up all of the Christmas storybooks that we have (40+ this year) after Thankgiving and put them under the tree. Each night during December, up until Christmas, the kids get to unwrap one or two and we read them together as a family. It’s great fun, provides lots of present opening opportunities, and good story reading time with the kids.

    My mom’s family always goes to a movie on Thanksgiving after dinner. I’m not sure about Christmas.

    I’m kind of bummed that The Aviator isn’t out today. I’d like to see that movie tonight.

  2. That’s really neat!

    We’re getting together with my husband’s brother’s family, who just moved to Santa Monica from TX (so odd that they end up there just months after we move to Huntington Beach), on Christmas Eve, and my s-i-l and I were trying to think of some fun activity we could do with all the kids. We thought about reading a Christmas story but realized the kids wouldn’t really enjoy it. It’d be one of those “do we have to” things for our kids. So instead we’re going to have them create a movie short, either in Flash or digital video. (Our kids are high tech kids.)

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