tree reflection_159542687A Day To:

Buy a real Christmas tree ready for decoration.

Start to read “A Christmas Carol”.

Work on finalising social arrangements.

(Scroll down for the day in detail)

Watch:

“The Grinch” (2000): starring Jim Carrey & “Dr. Seuss’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas!” (1966): with the voice talents of Boris Karloff. It’s double-bill time. We had a look at the latest animated version of this famous story earlier in the countdown, voiced by a certain Mr. Cumberbatch. Now, the recommendation is to watch the original animated version first: just 26 minutes long and narrated by the brilliant Boris Karloff it will set up the Jim Carrey version to come. Dr Seuss wrote the 1957 book about the Grinch, who is an American Christmas mainstay. The cartoon is an annual must there. It should be so here. Carrey’s creation in the live action version is an established favourite. (Movie Magic: Boris Karloff’s narration – Jim Carrey’s creation.)

And go to bed happy having watched this…

“While You Were Sleeping” (1995): starring Sandra Bullock and Bill Pullman. A delightful romantic comedy in which Sandra Bullock falls for a man who falls from a train platform on Christmas morning – then saves his life. He’s in a coma. Confusion ensues. Bullock’s character Lucy is engaged to comatose Peter…or is she? His family fall for her, she falls for them and suddenly finds herself falling a little too much for Peter’s brother Jack. Ease into the season with a feel-good factor that doesn’t rely on Santa Claus magic or Scrooge’s awakening. It’s ideal for a relaxing afternoon or evening by the fire. (Movie Magic: The family’s belated Christmas Day celebration, stockings, gifts, kisses, chatter and all. Beautifully observed.)

Ponder:

“Was there ever a wider and more loving conspiracy than that which keeps the venerable figure of Santa Claus from slipping away, with all the other old-time myths, into the forsaken wonderland of the past?”

Hamilton Wright Mabie (1846-1916), American Essayist

Listen:

“I Wish it Could Be Christmas Everyday” by Wizzard;

“Infant Holy, Infant Lowly” by Salisbury Cathedral Choir

“All This Time” (Walton) by Bach Choir.

Learn:

Did you know…the very British pantomime may have taken root in Britain in 1717 when a French troupe of actors and performing dogs visited England? Pantomime likely developed from the 16th century Italian Commedia dell’arte.

The Day in Detail:

Tree and bauble 2 128131763Mrs. C says: It’s a little more than a week since I last put on my serious social hat to firm up festive arrangements, albeit that socialising has taken on a very different air this year and some of my normal gatherings will not be taking place. Nonetheless, there will be get-togethers in small groups or via Zoom and Skype, with friends and family here and abroad. Before I do another thing this wonderful day, I intend to ring, email or text many of them and finalise as much as I possibly can for our Christmas plans. I need to nail down dates and times and put them in my diary, so that the ‘ifs’ and ‘maybes’ aren’t swimming uncontrollably around my head. Then, before the day is done, I will start a Christmas tradition that involves Mr. Scrooge.

Ed Elf: You’re not gonna go all “Bah humbug!” on me, are you?baubles 157305011

Mrs. C: Oh no, my dear little friend. I intend merely to start reading Charles Dickens’s classic “A Christmas Carol”. It’s a must and, for me, an annual tradition. I’ll enjoy it all the more knowing I’ve picked out a quite perfect real Christmas tree. That’s the most joyous task of all today. I’ve got the artificial one in the hall beautifully decorated. But I need that fresh pine smell in the house at Christmas and so I have a second tree in the living room. I have the tree delivered from a local farm, leave it in the garage for a couple of days to acclimatise and then bring it inside and decorate it. But I fully understand many of you will want to decorate them immediately. In fact, many of you will have already done so at the weekend. We mentioned this very fact on that particular day of the calendar countdown. Now we reiterate, do whatever suits you best and have fun if you decide to trim the tree today. Hope you are enjoying the tree in all its glory if you decorated it at the weekend or earlier.

Ed Elf: I’m very much up for decorating the real tree today. Go on Mrs. C…please! Please!       Mrs. C: He’s gonna be hard to resist.

Conifer and berries 64686097So today’s the day to:

  • Take delivery of a real Christmas tree ready for decoration either today or in a few days – whatever fits your schedule.
  • Finalise as best you can your social arrangements, such as they can be in this re-shaped world, for the Christmas period – determining to have this complete in the next few days.
  • Start reading the classic book that is “A Christmas Carol”.