It’s the Monday before Thanksgiving. From today through early January is my most favorite time of the year. I don’t want to get all sappy on you, but really, I can’t help myself. Shhhh. Listen, can’t you hear Johnny Mathis singing? Come on. Humor me.
“It’s the most wonderful time of the year! There’ll be much mistletoeing and hearts will be glowing when loved ones are near. It’s the most wonderful time of the year!” *
I know what you’re thinking, “Hey! Wait a second, Andy Williams made that song famous, not Johnny Mathis.” Yep it’s true. In fact, I have a very clear memory of the first time I heard that song, and while I can’t say for sure, it was more than likely good old Andy William who was singing. Just the same, in my book, there’s nobody who can sing that tune like Johnny Mathis, with his cheerful one-two-three-one-two-three cadence that compels me to leap up and waltz around the house. Anyway, the first time I heard it, I was just a little girl dozing off in the back seat of my parents’ car. We were driving home after our traditional Thanksgiving feast at my Aunt Mary’s house. It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year was playing softly on the radio. It was a new song and I remember straining to hear the lyrics. Even though I was just a little girl, I remember thinking how much I agreed with the man on the radio. Right then and there, with my belly full of turkey and the doors of the advent calendar waiting to be opened over the coming weeks, I knew without a doubt, I was smack in the middle of the most wonderful time of the year.
Ever since that night, there ‘s a certain spirit that sweeps over me during the time between Thanksgiving and New Years Day. Hearing It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year, especially the way Johnny Mathis sings it (and I can’t explain why except for the dancing thing), ignites a childlike spirit of excitement and anticipation in my heart like nothing else can! It’s the Monday before Thanksgiving 2010 and Johnny Mathis is crooning once again. I am dancing because tomorrow is the start of the school holiday! Jared will be dismissed early! Christian will be home from college! By dinner tomorrow my heart will be glowing! When loved ones are near, it’s the most wonderful time of the year! I am so excited! Now you’ll have to excuse me. I’m headed to the grocery store to beat the crowds. I have four glorious days with my family and I’m not going to waste a single minute of it standing in line behind some annoying person who refuses to bag his own groceries. You know the type.
Till tomorrow… Good night. Sleep tight.
* Eddie Pola and George Wyle wrote It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year in 1963. It was recorded and released in the same year by Andy Williams (Columbia Records) as a track for his first Christmas album, The Andy Williams Christmas Album. However, my favorite version is the one recorded and released by Johnny Mathis on his 1993 CD, The Christmas Music of Johnny Mathis (Columbia Records). When I am on Dancing with the Stars, I plan to perform my waltz routine to this song.