December 1, 2011

Christmas Books & Music - Part I

A Christmas Promise
by Lark Carrier

I'm not sure how long we've had this little book in our Christmas collection, but it's really more my daughter's than mine. I think I bought it for her because we lived out in the country and because she and the main character share the same name. It's a sweet little book, illustrated with pretty water color drawings.

I wrote about this album two years ago. For those of you who missed it, here's that post once again:

Have I really been listening to this album for 20 years? My husband would say it's been at least an eternity. But then he doesn't really care much for George Winston. He says it sounds like someone's tuning a piano for hours on end. What does he know? ;) I think it's gorgeous, meditative music and it never fails to put me in the holiday spirit.

I'd be hard pressed to choose a favorite track, but since my daughter was born in December (almost 26 years ago!), and I listened to Pachabel Canon in D major at the end of every "Mommy & Me" prenatal exercise class, I'd have to say Track # 9 is right up there. But then so is the beautiful Joy (known also as Jesus, Joy of Man's Desiring), which my brother used to play on the piano when we were kids. And then, of course, there's The Holly and The Ivy. Simply lovely. Makes me wish I knew how to play the piano.

I notice the 20th Anniversary Edition has two extra tracks (A Christmas Song and Sleep Baby Mine). Hmmm, might be time to invest in an updated album. I'm sure my husband wouldn't mind. This one's getting a bit worn out.

My good friend Nan listens to this every year on the 1st of December. I wonder if she has the new edition? I also wonder if she was listening at the same time as I. I'll bet her husband doesn't roll his eyes when he walks in the room while it's playing. ;)


  1. What a lovely post! I have special Christmas albums too, that I bring out for Christmas. Music is such a part of this time of year, isn't it?

  2. Susan - Thank you. I was hoping to do this type of post everyday in December, but I have a feeling life is going to be far too hectic this month for such a goal. :) This weekend, however, I plan to relax and enjoy the holiday preparations. Our tree is up with the lights and I plan to get it and some of the living room decorated. We don't do a lot in the way of decorations since our house is small and I don't care for too much clutter. I'm also planning to work on handwriting some notes to go with our Christmas cards (which I addressed a week or so ago). I have some gifts to wrap to take to the post office next week, as well as some shopping to do at B&N tomorrow, that is if the predictions for a snowstorm don't amount to too much accumulation. I'm excited about our first real snowstorm (had a tiny bit last month, but it didn't stick around) now that it's December. It will provide the perfect excuse to stay inside and enjoy the holiday preparations, listening to music, of course.

  3. I think I need to invest in a quality music system. My husband and I have been turning the tv off more and more each day...background music would be lovely and this record sounds good to me.

  4. Staci - I love my Bose. I've had it since sometime around 1996 or so. It's the big tall one that they used to make, but now you can get a very sleek, shorter model, which I would love. However, like my 30-year-old KitchenAid stand mixer (in almond rather than the silver, red or hunter green that I've been lusting after!), this Bose does not want to die. I also have a dock for my Nano and iPod and just bought a small little portable speaker for my Nano. Sound systems have come a long way in the past few decades! I hope you find something to enjoy your music. This particular album is a must for the holiday season, despite my husband's protestations. ;)

  5. I read the last part aloud to Tom - we both laughed. No, he didn't roll his eyes. In fact when he walked in the door on the 1st, he was very happy to hear GW (the other George W!) again. He's only played in this house one day a year.

    I haven't heard of the book.

    I loved this post. I hope you do one often. Just lovely.

    All I have is my Bose radio/cd player. It is hooked to the tv, too. Wonderful sound. Today Diana Krall is playing.


  6. Elisabeth7:32 AM

    Thank you for posting about Winston's CD December! The hubby's birthday is a few days before Xmas. Needless to say, gift giving is difficult. This is perfect for him!

  7. Nan- I only listen to GW one day out of the year, too. I have some other Windham Hill albums, which I'm sure he contributes to, but December is only played on the 1st. :)

    I was hoping to post more often, but this may turn out to be a once-a-week theme post in December. Too busy!!

    Elizabeth - Ah, another December birthday. Mine's coming up in a week. I hope your hubby enjoys the cd. Thanks for stopping by.

  8. I grew up on this CD as well--I'm not sure when my parents first picked it up, but I'm guessing probably close to 20 years ago. One of my favorite piano-only Christmas CDs is Peter Kater's For Christmas. Another one that is over 20 years old. It's a little more frilly than Winston's adaptations, but so gorgeous.

    And...since Winter has a song entitled Thanksgiving, I think it's ok to start listening in November! ;)

  9. Trish - I think I first discovered George Winston in 1984 and bought this album shortly thereafter.

    I'll have to look for Peter Kater's Christmas album. I'm always on the lookout for something to new to listen to during December. I got a few new Christmas cds for my birthday, as well as a couple of Glee "archival" back-up copies from a co-worker. Who knew Glee and Christmas music could sound so good?! (I've never seen the show, so who knows. Maybe I'd like it.)


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