Chen May Yee swapped life as a foreign correspondent in Asia for domesticity in Minneapolis, where she lives with preschooler Maya, kindergartener Zoe and husband Chris, a stay-at-home dad. She writes about healthcare at the Star Tribune and hankers after warmer climates.
Kay Krhin makes daily attempts to balance doing more with less and less with more at work and home, more or less. She is married to multi-faceted modern man Peter and is a slightly seasoned mother to preschooler Ben and toddler Vivian.
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We were listening to my Christmas mix and "It's the Most Wonderful Time of the Year" came on.
All of a sudden 3 year old Vivian came up to me lower lip out quivering and fat tears rolling down her face.
"Why are you crying?" I asked.
She shook her head and pointed at the iPod.
"He said there would be scary ghost stories and I don't want to hear them!"
Wait . What? It took me a second.
Oh - she meant the lyric " There'll be scary ghost stories and tales of the glories from Christmas' long long ago" (Must be referring to Dickens' "A Christmas Carol" I would assume???)
But I know our family never sat around on Christmas Eve telling scary ghost stories...
It's such a disconnect. The song is so cheery and he sounds so excited about sharing scary ghost stories.
Nor did we have "marshmallows for toasting" as another lyric in the song says.
Ghost Stories? Toasting marshmallows? It's Christmas. Not a campfire. But I digress.
I assured Vivian and comforted her that there would be no ghost stories.
Besides, holiday songs aren’t supposed to make you cry.
Then I started thinking of so many that do.
I often get misty at the minor tune of “Christmas Time is Here” from the Charlie Brown Christmas special. So bittersweet. It captures and reflects Charlie Brown's melancholy mood beautifully.
Oh and “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas.” It always gets me with the line “Through the years we all will be together, if the fates allow…” I think of so many that the fates have not allowed to be together any longer. And some of the best versions of the song are sung by those who are no longer with us. Like Ella Fitzgerald. But oh, the ones that left this earth so tragically early really get me. Karen Carpenter comes to mind and ouch this version sung by John Denver and Rowlf (Jim Henson) gets me every time. I reach for the Kleenex when I hear these two sing it together.
What Christmas songs make you blue?
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