Christmas in July Blogathon: 5 Movies to Show my Daughter

ORIGINALLY POSTED at Drew’s Movie Reviews here. Please check out Drew’s blog and the rest of the entries to his Christmas in July blogathon!

I can’t believe I’m taking part in Drew’s Christmas in July Blogathon for the 3rd year running! Christmas is my absolute favourite time of the year, and so I don’t need many excuses to talk about the festive season and related movies. Thank you Drew for hosting again!

This year, Christmas is going to be pretty different for me, as I’ll have a 2-month old baby! Part of me is dreading the chaos, but mostly I’m looking forward to making the holiday a magical time for this little one. Of course, that’s going to include brainwashing introducing her to some of my favourite Christmas movies! That’s why this year, I decided to dedicate my blogathon post to 5 Christmas Movies to Show My Daughter.

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The Snowman (1982)

Wait, don’t call Child Protection Services yet! I don’t mean the upcoming horror/thriller by the same name. I mean the classic British Christmas TV movie, The Snowman, where a boy builds a snowman that comes to life on Christmas Eve. It’s a magical story and features one of the most beautiful songs, ‘Walking in the Air’. We might even follow it up with the 2012 sequel, The Snowman and the Snowdog, but it still makes me cry!

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Shrek the Halls (2007)

How on Earth is Shrek the Halls 10 years old already?! Another short TV movie that’s been an annual event in my family since it was released. We’re big Shrek fans in my family (only the first 2 movies though) and we sadly know all the words to this! If you’ve never seen it, after the hustle and bustle of the Shrek family settling down on Christmas Eve, Donkey, Shrek & Fiona tell the tale of the night before Christmas…in their own special way!

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The Muppet Christmas Carol (1992)

The Muppets were a huge part of my childhood, it was my favourite show when I was little and I’ve continued to love them ever since. In fact, the song ‘Life’s a Happy Song’ from the 2011 movie was the song my husband and I walked back down the aisle to on our wedding day! I’m hoping my daughter will have the same sense of humour as I do, so I’m sure she’ll love watching The Muppet Christmas Carol.

Whilst those are 3 movies that I think any child would easily enjoy, mine is going to have accept the fact that she’s going to have her Mum & Dad’s favourite Christmas movies ever forced upon her. Let’s start with Dad, shall we?

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Jingle All the Way (1996)

I can’t believe that 9 years ago I had no idea Jingle All the Way existed. I was invited to my (now) husband’s parents house over Christmas where they sat for their annual watch of this movie, and I loved every second. In fact, it’s impossible for anyone to eat a cookie around me without me shouting ‘put that cookie down, NOW!’. So whether she loves it or hates it, a bit of Arnold Schwarzenegger is always needed at Christmas!

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National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation (1989)

I talk far too much about the National Lampoon’s movies so I’ll keep this brief, but there’s no way it couldn’t have been in this list! I’m just dreading the moment in a few years time where my daughter will complain about having to watch it and exclaim ‘this movie is as old as you!’.

Finally, part of Drew’s tradition is to host a party of our favourite celebrities, and we all get to add a name to the guest list. I think it’s only fair that I throw Dan Stevens an invite this year, and carefully place as much mistletoe around the venue as possible!

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Christmas Catch Up & Rogue One Thoughts

Merry belated Christmas everyone! Thankfully I haven’t worked out a proper schedule for this blog yet, because I’m currently in that limbo period between Christmas Day and New Year’s day where I don’t know what day of the week it is, or even time of day. Not that it matters that much, because every meal of the day consists of turkey and chocolate right now. Whilst sitting in my current food coma though, I thought I would catch up on everyone’s posts and share some thoughts on Rogue One which I saw yesterday.

Christmas Day was wonderful, and I got to split the day with both sides of my family. Don’t you just think a home cooked Christmas dinner is the greatest part of the day? Maybe it’s because I’m older, but I could have wept tears of joy at the sight and smell of pigs in blankets, roast parsnips and sausage meat on the table. I just wish I could have eaten more!

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Of course, I also had some wonderful presents! My husband and I didn’t buy each other gifts this year because we’re in the process of buying our first home (help!) but I was blown away by the generosity of my friends and family. There was a big Star Wars theme going on which was great fun! 15-year-old me would be so proud and confused to learn that her future self 12 years later was still asking for the same presents, a new pair of Vans and the latest Pokemon game! That’s right, I’m currently playing Pokemon Moon and my husband got Pokemon Sun. My Vans weren’t any old Vans either, but the new Woody editions from the Toy Story collection! I should have tried to take a good photo of them straight away but I was too excited and haven’t really taken them off yet.

I also got the full Series 4 set of the Lego Star Wars Microfighters which were extremely fun to put together, and the Lego U-Wing from Rogue One which I haven’t even dared to take out the box yet, that’s going to take at least 3 hours to build!

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Boxing Day brought my family’s group trip to the IMAX, a group which seems to get smaller each year sadly, but us hard-core cinema goers packed into the car and said ‘no thanks’ to the sale shopping. It feels pointless stressing this to you guys, but I just love IMAX so much. The intro sequence gives me chills, and it’s the only way to watch a movie like Rogue One!

As for the movie itself, I feel like I need a second viewing before I can put together a proper review. It was so much different to what the other Star Wars movies have been like, but at the same time, it felt so right! I’m just pretty incoherent about it all still, really. At first I was disappointed that most of the clips in the trailer never made it into the final movie, but I get the feeling the powers that be changed their mind on how it would all end. I’m absolutely in love with that a*****e droid, K-2S0 though, he was my favourite part by far! Move over, BB-8.

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We’ll be with you, Jyn. Cassian said we had to.

I think I need only say ‘corridor scene’ and you’ll all know what I mean. Chills, man, chills. Also, ‘be careful not to choke on your aspirations, Director’. Ugh! Chills again. Scary as hell. Also scary? The level to which CGI has come. It’s not quite advanced enough for it to be perfect, but still, kudos!

I’ll get a proper Rogue One post ready over the next week or so but for now, another island challenge awaits me in Pokemon Moon, and I’m also preparing a list of books I’m planning on tackling as part of a New Year’s resolution. What about you, what was your favourite Christmas gift this year?

A Merry Fictional Blog Challenge

I can’t believe that in a week’s time, Christmas will be over! It feels like we spend so long getting ready for the huge event, and then it passes by without us barely noticing. With 4 work days to go I was in need of some festive cheer, so when I saw Katy at Oh So Geeky post her answers for her ‘A Merry Fictional Blog Challenge’ she couldn’t have had better timing!

If you’d like to get involved also, simply check out Katy’s original post. But without further ado, here are my answers!

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Advent Calendar: Traditions you celebrate during December?
Aside from the usual family traditions, we have a long standing tradition of a big family get together to the cinema on the Sunday before Christmas. It started many years ago with The Polar Express, and we’ve been every year since. In recent years we’ve seen The Hobbit trilogy, last year we saw The Force Awakens, and this year will be Rogue One. I say will be because we’ve had to change the date this year to Boxing Day!

Carols: What’s your favorite song(s)?
There is no possible way I could pick a favourite Christmas song, it’s my favourite time of year and there are too many! However, it always seems to be that Mariah Carey’s All I Want for Christmas is the first to be played on the radio, and that song is glorious.

Coal: A naughty character you’d send coal to?
I’d send coal to Ajax Francis, from Deadpool.

Fireplace: Favorite Christmas movie that melts your heart?
My favourite Christmas movies are Jingle All The Way and National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation, but they’re comedies. There has never been an instance that I’ve watched The Polar Express without ugly crying into a mug of tea, however.

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Gingerbread: What’s your favorite holiday snack?
This might be an odd one, but After Eight Mints, and Terry’s Chocolate Oranges. I don’t know if they’re a worldwide thing or UK only, but I can eat an entire box of mints and/or an entire orange and not feel bad about how sick it would make me.

Hot Cocoa: What’s your favorite drink?
I don’t like hot chocolate or coffee, but Costa are doing a Hot Spiced Apple drink this year which is absolutely to die for!

Mistletoe: Character you’d like to meet under the mistletoe?
Only one?! I’ll go with Benedict Cumberbatch’s Sherlock.

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He seems confused…

Mittens: A cozy outfit that keeps you warm during winter?
The weather can be so odd here in the UK. In the winter I tend to wear exactly what I would any other season, but with a big winter coat and gloves in my pocket just in case!

Naughty: Three characters who’d make the Naughty list.
Paul Spector (The Fall), Man in Black (Westworld) & Rowan North (Ghostbusters).

Nice: Three characters who’d make the Nice list.
Moana (Moana, funnily enough), Jyn Erso (Rogue One) & Dustin Henderson (Stranger Things).

North Pole: If you could spend Christmas anywhere (even fictional), where would you go?
Maybe this is a boring choice as it’s real rather than fictional, but after spending 2 days at Disneyland California this year as part of my honeymoon, I would love to go back for Christmas, it would be magical!

Presents: A book or movie on your wishlist?
I’m planning on doing a lot of reading in the New Year, much more than the 2 measly books I managed in 2016! So I can’t think of one specific book right now, but I’ll have a whole list by January.

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Rudolph: What’s your favorite TV holiday special?
I’m sure there are some great ones out there, but another family tradition of mine is watching Shrek The Halls on Christmas Eve. It’s been so many years now we know all the words. We’re probably really embarrassing, come to think of it.

Santa: A character you’d love to exchange presents with? What would you get them?
I would love to work in the office from Parks & Recreation and take part in an office Secret Santa there. I’d rig it so I could buy for Leslie Knope so I could get her all sorts of stationery and organisational tools, because we have a shared passion in that area.

Scrooge: A villain you’d help see life in a different way?
Kylo Ren for sure. It wouldn’t work (I already tried at Disneyland) but I’d still give it a go. I would either end up a quivering mess on the floor (again, happened at Disneyland) or I’d get cut in half before I finished talking.

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I tried to sass Kylo Ren, and he really wasn’t impressed. I was legit terrified!

Snowflake: Something that makes you feel special.
Last weekend, doing a food shop at the supermarket. They were playing Christmas songs non-stop, and in the bakery isle there was a bit of a sing-a-long going on between some strangers, and it’s honestly one of the most special things to be a part of. It’s the littlest things in life sometimes!

Tree: What do you decorate your house with for the season?
We have our usual Christmas tree, tinsel around every surface we can find, and a few silly decorations too. This year my husband and I are sharing the Lego Star Wars advent calendar, which has a prime location in the living room.

Yuletide: The top 3 things in your life that make you the most happy?
Aside from family and friends (who are the true number 1) I would say coming home from a pants day at work to find my husband and 2 cats who are always happy to see me, lazy evenings spent on the sofa watching a movie, and pizza. Definitely pizza.

BONUS: Ugly Christmas Sweater: Would you wear a sweater Molly Weasley made you or avoid it like the plague?
OMG I WOULD WEAR IT WITH PRIDE.