Top 5 Favorite Christmas Songs Countdown (Etc.). . .

IMG_7942.JPGOver the weekend, I toured Winterthur with some friends. Winterthur (pronounced “winter-tour”) is the former estate of Henry Francis du Pont, an avid and eccentric collector. I enjoyed seeing the house with its many beautiful rooms, amazing hand-painted wallpaper, period furniture, and especially several Christmas-themed vignettes with a variety of beautiful Christmas trees (some of them are pictured above).

In my last post, I described my desire to stay focused on a few key values during this Christmas season & I do feel like my “10-ish Questions” have been helping me to stay grounded. How are you feeling about the holiday–any stresses?

In this week’s post, I’m just taking some time (while sipping Trader Joe’s Candy Cane Green Tea) to compile a “Top 5 Favorite Christmas Songs” Countdown, so you can just take a little de-stressing music break if you’d like.

Sidenote: I’m refusing to put on the local radio stations that are playing Christmas music non-stop. I can’t handle, “Baby, It’s Cold Outside” or “Dominick the Donkey” just yet, but I have enjoyed listening to a few select songs on my own terms. 🙂 If those two are your favorites, more power to you! 


My Top 5 Favorite Christmas Songs

#5 – Hark! The Herald Angels Sing (There are many good versions of this song, but I’m sharing the Charlie Brown version because the Peanuts Christmas Special is always a fun part of my Christmas traditions.)

#4 – Silent Night (Ok, so this is a pretty country-ified version of it, but how fun is that?! 😉 I’ve always really liked this song at Christmas time. Whenever I hear it, I remember singing it by candlelight at the end of Christmas Eve church services at my Grandparents’ church.)

#3 – It Came Upon a Midnight Clear (There’s not much to say about this. Just a true classic, beautifully performed.)

#2 – What Child Is This? (Hard to compete with the vocals and orchestration on this recording . . . simply beautiful.)

#1 – I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day (Our church Choir performed this a few years ago, and it has been a favorite ever since. I really like the inclusion of a children’s choir, and I also love how honest the lyrics are about desiring peace on earth, especially after a year that has felt a little too frantic in many ways.)


And now it’s your turn: I’d love to hear about (and listen to) some of your favorite Christmas songs. Would you leave a comment & tell me about them?

Have a wonderfully Merry week,

❤ Nicole


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Love & Friendship

Today, I saw a refreshingly clever film called Love & Friendship, based on the novella Lady Susan, written by the acclaimed (and often-film-interpolated) Jane Austen. I draw your attention here so that you’ll consider seeing it. Since this blog is primarily about creativity, I had to tell you that this is one of the most creative films I’ve seen in quite some time.

I went into the film knowing very little about it, wanting to be surprised by what would unfold . . .  and I was, mostly pleasantly, as this was no ordinary plodding period piece. Clever cinematic choices and spot-on acting married perfectly with Austen’s sharp wit.

If you get a chance to view it, do . . . and then tell me what you thought!

(Some of my friends and co-workers could attest to how rare it is for me to recommend a movie, so that may add to the endorsement here. 😉 )

If you’d like to read more about the film (with perhaps some spoilers), here’s a thorough, raving review from the Telegraph.

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And just for fun . . . this cute little travel journal features a quote from Austen’s Northanger Abbey and is available for purchase from Bookishly.