A Charlie Brown Christmas Spirit

Until today I’m not sure I could have told you my favorite television holiday special.  But yesterday, I googled A Charlie Brown Christmas and found that it is available for free viewing on Hulu.  I watched it, intending to do some other work at the same time, but had to stop and watch with dedication.

Charlie Brown’s little Christmas tree.  Snoopy getting wild dancing on the piano until Lucy and Schroeder glare at him, then turning red and slinking offscreen.  Linus hastily turning his beloved blankie into a shepherd’s headcovering under threat of Lucy’s five-finger salute.

And of course, poor browbeaten Charlie Brown asking the true meaning of Christmas until Linus takes his thumb out of his mouth and asks politely, “Lights, please.”  Then he proceeds to quote the Biblical story of Christmas.

I understand that not everyone shares this tradition or this faith, but this nearly 50-year-old animated cartoon brought me the Christmas spirit the way nothing else has this year.  Part of it may be getting older.  When I was a child, I didn’t understand the appeal of Charlie Brown.  He moped, felt sorry for himself, and quite frankly was a downer.  I wanted to yell at him, “DON’T try to kick that football!” but every time he would run and then fall flat on his back when Lucy pulled the football away at the last minute.  But as I get older and have struggled through the ups and downs of trying to establish a career, I’ve come to understand Charlie Brown’s earnest efforts and courage to continue despite setbacks.  It’s a good image for me right now with the dissertation monster looming ever larger by the day.  I may have wasted eight months of research if I decide to change paths.  It’s discouraging, but Charlie Brown’s refusal to give up reminded me that I may feel Charlie Brown at times, but that may not be the worst thing to be.

And while as a child I didn’t quite get Snoopy either, except perhaps to laugh at his silliness, as an adult his hilarious antics paired with Charlie Brown’s over-seriousness came across differently.  We may feel Charlie Brownish, but it’s the Charlie Browns who need our silly Snoopy dogs to remind us to laugh.

Today, our Advent Calendar question comes courtesy of Renee Rose.

What is your favorite holiday television special?

If you don’t have one, her alternate question is:

What was your favorite holiday gift?

Oh, and you might also want to check out Kat and Natalie’s letters to Santa today.  Well, Santa and Mrs. Claus.  You knew that Natalie wouldn’t write to Santa, didn’t you?  😉

Danewyn, a tavern prostitute, has always been cursed with the Sight–the ability to see into the unknown. It is a trait she has learned to keep hidden from others, but a moment of anger finds her blurting out a prediction about the Red Fox, the rightful king of Britain. Unfortunately, her prediction is overheard by one of the Red Fox’s men, putting her in grave danger. Captured and carried off for questioning, she finds herself prisoner to Sir Ferrum, an enormous knight who bears the scars of an old injury upon his face. She finds Sir Ferrum to be firm and unyielding, but his treatment of her also reveals a gentleness which she has difficulty reconciling with his harsh discipline. To her dismay, her feelings for him continue to grow, and Dani must decide whether to continue her plans for escape or accept her new role as Sir Ferrum’s woman and Seer to the Red Fox.

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40 thoughts on “A Charlie Brown Christmas Spirit

  1. Julia D. says:

    My favourite special? Dr. Who! I can’t wait for it, but I’ll have to. *sigh*
    And my favourite gift? We don’t do Christmas gifts, but knowing my daughter’s pregnancy is right on track it the best gift ever.

    Hugs, Julia

    Like

  2. SassyTwatter says:

    Don’t get discouraged every path you choose teaches you something you wee mean to know even if you do end up. Hanging your disertation. I almost died when not post when I woke up thought is Ana ok. I am safely ensconced in bed right now now driving. So please remind Mrs Claus no need to make trip to west coast. We are all little Angela out here. I promise. I can’t wai to read Renee Rise new book thank you just added to my kindle- which yay I found! As for favorite Xmas movie I don’t have one except I love all the ba lifetime ones that air has been years since seen them. They always make me cry but in easy. That sounded bad- hmm. Favorite present was my dog that hubby for for me when I was 18. Wrong present to get an 18 year old but loved her! Sadly she recently passed making it to the ripe age of 17! Happy Friday!

    Like

    • Ana says:

      We know how much of an addict we are when I wake up thinking, “Oh, I didn’t have a post ready this morning” and you panic when there’s no post. 😀

      You are still in trouble for the car stuff, young lady. Don’t try to talk your way out of it.

      Like

      • SassyTwatter says:

        *Giggles* very true. I might be hard to find I am all over the place next few days don’t want to waste Mrs. Claus’s time there are many more naughty people, eserving of her attention. And I am totally reformed currently sitting down at a computer logged in correctly! But gotta run I have granola in the oven. Dont do to much more cleaning you are making us all look bad! AND BTW the avi does not look like a chirstmas tree. Just saying….

        Like

        • Ana says:

          It’s her job, dear, to make sure people like you can never sit properly again. 😀

          I found out, thanks to youtube, that I can open the top of my stove! Just like a car hood! Wow!!

          LOL…I’m sad.

          Like

          • SassyTwatter says:

            Well if Mrs. Claus does show up thankfully Ivan good talker and great negotiator. I will gift her with a spoon just for your naughty behind.

            Why are you sad? What are you doing looking at utube and opening stove. I read about your tv Dvd TiVo fiasco- just step away don’t touch anything else!!!

            Like

  3. Joelle Casteel says:

    hehe, “The Knight’s Prisoner”- looks absolutely yummy, Renee, already on my Goodreads’ list and I have the plan to beg and plead and do whatever I need to also get my medieval ages-loving Master to read it :D.
    But TV special? I’m sorry, don’t have one, and I’m not sure I can answer the alternate question, but does a CD of Christmas songs count? Because I finally went into my home education room to find the 2 CD-set from The Royal Guardsmen that my parents found me a few years ago- yes, I know, how many 34 year olds are familiar with them :D?- but one of the very few good memories I have of Christmas with my biological family is listening to the “Snoopy Vs. the Red Baron” songs. I plan, after enjoying some military history channel while I eat breakfast, to put it in- although it may make for some odd writing music lol
    hm, favorite gift… I’ll give it a thought now… actually the way gift giving tends to happen in my biological family just makes me sad… the piles and piles of gifts, gone through so fast as to not be remarkable. But a favorite gift? One Christmas when Master was working at Walmart and money was so tight we’d qualified for one of those “give a poor child a gift” things for my then-preschool age son, my Master somehow got me some Jelly Bellies for the holiday.

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    • Ana says:

      CD of Christmas songs is lovely. I’ve been a bit sad this year not to find at least two Christmas CDs I purchased last year. They were my favorite, so I listened to them even in the off-season. Where they are now, I have no idea.

      Like

  4. Bas says:

    I hardly believe this myself, but I miss Billy Smarts circus on television. And I don’t even like circuses! But Billy Smart was so much a traditional part of Christmas in my youth, that I still feel Christmas nowadays misses something.

    I will have to echo Julia D on my daughter’s pregnancy. She has some health problems and is on medicines, so seeing that baby just growing as he should, is a special gift. And I get yet another Christmas present. Right after Christmas, Lisa and I are invited for a 3D echo starring our future Grandson. Those are my favourite gifts of all time!

    Like

    • Ana says:

      Now that is someone I’ll have to look up. It’s a Christmas special?

      Sorry to hear about Pixel, but I am glad that things are okay for now. Wow, another grandbaby! You are being showered with blessings.

      Like

    • Julia D. says:

      Billy Smarts Christmas Circus? Well, that’s a blast from the past. 😉
      Best wishes on your daughter’s pregnancy. I understand how it must be difficult for you to realise there may be problems.
      I’m facing something like that myself: there may be a problem, but we can’t know for sure until the next ultrasound, in another couple of weeks. And I can’t even be there to hold her hand, since she lives so far away. 😦
      Ah, well, I’ll be there for the birth: tickets are bought and paid for. Just 3 more months.

      Hugs, Julia

      Like

  5. Celeste Jones says:

    I caught the Charlie Brown Christmas the other day on TV and it really is my favorite. Sadly, I was almost startled by the direct use of the Bible in the story since that almost never happens any more. There might be a vague reference to God or angels, but not a reading of the Christmas Story.

    Like

    • Ana says:

      I *think*, though I might be wrong, that it was surprising even for that time (1965). At least I remember a teacher telling me so. Teachers are always right, right? 🙂

      I love that it’s Linus saying it.

      Like

  6. Kelsey Summer says:

    Very vanilla answers today, but my favorite holiday special is still Rudolph. I love the misfits. It was my favorite as a kid and still is even though I’m in my forties. My favorite holiday gift was my Kindle last year. I carry it with me everywhere.

    Like

  7. Sue Lyndon says:

    My favorite holiday special is National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation. We watched it all the time growing up and now it’s one of my husband’s favorite movies…so it’s on all the time in our house this time of year.

    Renee, to borrow one of your favorite words, The Knight’s Prisoner sounds “yummy.” 🙂

    Like

  8. Sunny Girl says:

    I’ve mentioned before “The Gathering” is my favorite Christmas movie. Sadly, I’ll miss it this year because its not on tv anymore and my copy is VHS and I haven’t transferred it over to DVD. It’s a story of a grown family coming together for Christmas when their mother’s told them it will be dad’s last Christmas. Sad but poignant in that it shows what is really important.

    Like

  9. reneeroseauthor says:

    Thank you Ana for hosting me and for all your kind and yummy comments. 🙂 Celeste, I had the same experience with the Charlie brown one this year– I wasn’t really watching, but the kids were, and I was startled by the religion in it!

    I’ve always always loved the Grinch and it’s not because I am one (although I am), it was that sweet sweet song at the end after they lost everything with the holding hands, etc. And the grinch was SOOOOO mean and scary, which made his transformation all the more miraculous. And Cindy loo hoo– pure innocent love! It was the first Christmas movie we bought for our kids (we do also have Diego’s Christmas – I think he saves some llamas or something and Max and Ruby’s Christmas. If you dont’ have preschoolers you have no idea what I’m talking about, I’m sure).

    how’s that for some christmas babble?

    Like

    • Ana says:

      I know! Isn’t it funny what’s startling now?

      Grinch. Grinchy McGrinch. 😀 And yes, I do love the song at the end.

      Not a fan of Diego or Max and Ruby. Please tell me at least your kids don’t have Elmo Saves Christmas? I hated that one with a passion. I tried to convince my friends not to give it to their kids, but the little one adored Elmo. I will never accept Elmo as a “real’ Sesame Street character.

      Glad to have you, Miss Yummy Grinch. 😀

      Like

  10. pao says:

    Tough questions to answer..I don’t really watch the telly during such holidays and neither do I receive presents. But during a certain festive season, there was a director who would produce a number of commercials (or really short videos) to promote a spirit of togetherness every year. Her work never fails to touch people’s hearts.
    All the best to you, Ana 🙂

    Like

  11. jadecaryade says:

    I LOVE A Charlie Brown Christmas. I also love A Christmas Carol, but the old one with Alistair someone. I love Rudolph. Not clamation, I don’t think. Rudy looks fuzzy. And of course, The Grinch.

    The three best words that best describe you,
    Are as follows, and I quote”
    Stink!
    Stank!
    Stunk!

    LOL!

    Like

  12. Joseph McNamara says:

    I like a couple of other’s here love the movie “Christmas Vacation” (Jee, agreeing with Renee here! 🙂 ) But I also have watched the last two years not Michael Buble’s Christmas special. He has a unique presence as a performer and his special always has a little bit for all musical tastes.

    Like

    • Ana says:

      For the regular cartoons the children’s voices are awfully stilted, but the voices for the Christmas special are wonderful. Even with the stilted voices, though, there’s nothing like Charlie Brown.

      Like

  13. Minelle says:

    Wow I am soooooo late! I was at work and then our Christmas party!
    Whew!!! Well I love Rudolf, Santa is coming to town, the Grinch and White Christmas….There, did I make it???

    Like

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