Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Holiday Classics

Most of us are crazy busy at this time of year (including me). We're trying to juggle work, family, shopping, holiday parties, the budget and so on. To help keep some perspective, it's worth trying to carve out a little time to appreciate some of the literary and cinematic classics that bring the season to life.

A Christmas CarolRead or watch the wonderful Charles Dicken's tale A Christmas Carol, the story of miserly Scrooge and the three spirits that bring him to a new sense of the joy and wonder of the Christmas season. You can do a chapter a night as a family read aloud in the week preceding December 25th, or you can borrow one of the several film versions of the story that the library owns.

MCPL can offer anything from the 1951 Alastair Sim's version (which set the standard for screen portrayals of Scrooge) to Disney's Mickey's Christmas Carol, with Uncle Scrooge McDuck in the starring role.

Cover image of A Christmas Memory
 My personal favorite stars George C. Scott as a particularly curmudgeonly Scrooge. Or there's always The Muppet Christmas Carol—Kermit makes a wonderful Bob Crachit. If you have time after the holidays, and are looking for an interesting read for a cold January night, you can pick up The Man Who Invented Christmas by Les Standiford to find out more about Dickens and his beloved story.

It's a Wonderful Life coverAnother appealing short read is Truman Capote's autobiographical novella A Christmas Memory. This gentle story decribes the Christmas preparations of a young boy and his slightly eccentric, elderly cousin in the Depression era South.

cover of The Night Before Christmas by Jan Brett
Night Before Christmas - Jan Brett
Frank Capra's classic film It's a Wonderful Life seems to be on a TV loop during December, but if you need to schedule your own showing, the library can provide a copy. Remember, every time a bell rings.....

cover image of Tomie DePaola's Night Before Christmas
Night Before Christmas
Tomie de Paola
Another lovely family read aloud is Clement Moore's The Night Before Christmas. The library has many wonderfully illustrated versions of the poem, ranging from the  intricate and playful work of Jan Brett, to Tasha Tudor's warm and homey pictures of an elfin Santa, to one in the distinctive style of beloved children's author Tomie De Paola.

cover image of book "Hot Toddies"So pop some popcorn, make some warm drinks, for both the adults and kids, and gather everyone around to make some great holiday memories.



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