Friday, December 7, 2012

Books, Food and Christmas Movies

Well, my husband has finally gotten the crud and is sick. I'm freezing and I have body aches but I'm not sure if that's due to illness or if it's just due to my office always being cold and me being out of shape. This weekend we finally have time to just relax and read or watch movies which I plan to do (although we still need to fit in errands, wrapping presents, getting the tree, doing chores, etc.).

As soon as the work day is over - c'mon 5:30! - I'm heading to the store to get stuff that will smell good cookin' (chicken perhaps, pot roast definitely), then I'm coming home, putting my jammies on and curling up with one of many books that I'm trying to get to or finish. Currently, I am reading...

Holidays on Ice by Dave Sedaris - I'm only part of the way through but it's hilarious in a dark kind of way. His stint as a Christmas elf makes me want to go sit at the mall with a cup of cocoa and watch Santa and the kids. And of course the jerk in me wants to watch people act frazzled trying to get Christmas presents that they waited until Dec. 23rd to get. Let's make that a date night, hubby! 

Sense and Sensibility by Jane Austen - I read it a lonnnnnnggggg time ago and I know the movie quite well, but thanks to my husband, I have a CD version that I am enjoying listening to in my car. It kind of makes me want my commutes to last longer. 

In Cold Blood - I just keep putting this down and I don't  have a good reason. Maybe it's because I don't really want to think about murder this time of year. 

Other books I'm looking forward to are The Last Lecture by Randy Pausch, Skipping Christmas by John Grisham and Let's Pretend This Never Happened by Jenny Lawson. And hopefully by the end of the year, I will have made my way back to Hogwart's for the last two books in the Harry Potter series.


Now, of course, I have to take a little time off from books to watch holiday movies. Here's my top ten picks (since I wimped out on doing Top Ten Tuesday this week), starting with #10:

10.) Love Actually - Hugh Grant, Emma Thompson, Alan Rickman (purrrrrr!) and whole lot of other people - hilarious, romantic, sweet and a definite favorite - I probably should have ranked it higher but I didn't want to re-do my list. :)

9.) A Diva's Christmas Carol - a lesser-known holiday treat with Vanessa Williams playing Ebony, the pop singer, who has forgotten the meaning of Christmas and is shown her past, present and future. It's got Kathy Griffin, Chili from the group, TLC, and some awesome music. Whatever, I like stop laughing.

8.) The Family Stone - A liberal family with a very familiar and comfortable dynamic is threatened by the new visitor, the eldest son's girlfriend, a conservative businesswoman who "doesn't seem to trust herself." You wince at some parts and laugh and cry at others. Sarah Jessica Parker plays a very different role alongside Diane Keaton, Rachel McAdams, Luke Wilson, (Dylan McDermott, Dermot McDerment, Durman Dermulroney - dammit it's Dermot Mulroney) and Craig T. Nelson. It really is worth watching!

7.) Scrooged - Starring Bill Murray, I know a lot of people don't like this version of Scrooge but I do. I love Bobcat Goldthwait in anything and the spooky music really gets me. I'm pretty sure that I saw this movie with a bunch of friends for my 13th birthday in 1988. 

6.) A Christmas Story - The most quotable Christmas movie ever! Ralphie's narrations and the father make this movie a classic. "You'll shoot your eye out!" 

5.) The Homecoming - This is a Waltons' family Christmas movie and the story wraps around the family as they prepare for Christmas during the depression. They wait and worry about the patriarch of the family who is on a long trip home. One of my favorites - very sweet!

4.) It's a TIE: 
Rudolph - I watched this when I was little and it's still awesome. Cute Rudolph, Yukon Cornelius and that scary Bumble. The best part is the Island of Misfit Toys. 
How the Grinch Stole Christmas - The cartoon - not that stupid Jim Carey movie. I love the pup in the animated classic and Cindy Lou Who is so freakin' adorable!

3.) Elf - Bob Newhart, James Caan, Will Farrell and lots o' laughs. "Son of a nutcracker!"

2.) It's a Wonderful Life - If you don't cry at the end of this movie, you are a cotton-headed ninny-muggins. 

1.) Scrooge - the musical, starring Albert Finney. This is the best Christmas movie ever. The music automatically makes me think of Christmas with my family. The sound of my dad cracking walnuts, the clanking of dishes as my mom works on Christmas dinner, the smell of  pine and my mother's perfume, the faces of my nieces and nephew, the trilling laugh of my sister, the quiet breathy laugh of my brother and the sweetness of the day that brings us together. Sorry, I just got kind of mushy. But that's what this movie does for me. :)

EDIT: I can't believe I forgot Little Women (any version will do but the one with Winona Ryder and Christian Bale - before he was Batman) is so beautifully done and I watch it with my mom every year...

Honorable mentions go to...Muppet Christmas Carol, Charlie Brown Christmas, Miracle on 34th Street and White Christmas. I'm sure I'll think of others.


Kate Midnight Book Girl said...

Love the list of Christmas movies!!! And I can't wait for you to for you to dive back into Hogwarts- I always think these books work best as winter reads. I plan on reading all day long on Saturday- I've been running around for over a week and I just need a day with my books!! I'm going to hit my goodreads goal for this year, but I won't make last years achievement. I do love this time of year!

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