That’s Christmas to me

I’m often asked why I love the holiday season so much. It could be 90 degrees outside in August or 45 degrees on Easter weekend in March and there is a good chance I could be listening to Christmas music. July slowly is becoming a mini-December for me!

Nov. 1 has become my official start of the holiday season with a run up to that being the Hallmark Channel holiday movie kickoff the weekend around Halloween. As people head out to costume parties and kids stroll the streets for candy, I’m nestled under a blanket on the couch watching Christmas romances on Hallmark Channel and playing holiday tunes from iTunes or iHeartRadio.

I find myself defending my love of the holidays against people who demand that I don’t even think about Christmas until the last slice of pumpkin pie is gone after Thanksgiving.

And putting up the tree before Thanksgiving? Blasphemy, they say!

Meanwhile, the first Christmas commercial or product or glimpse of anything anywhere and I’m all…

So what is it about Christmas that I love so much? Christmas is magical. It’s a time to reflect on the year that was, think about the year to be and enjoy the moment right now with friends and family.

My grandmother loved the holidays. I remember helping her decorate her house in November (many years while watching the old Kaufmann’s Celebrate the Season Parade in Pittsburgh on TV). The cookies, the gifts, the crafts, the fun, the memories.

That love of the holidays continued through to my mother, whose feelings about this time of year are comparable to mine.

Traditions have continued and morphed and been added, and each holiday season becomes a special chapter in my life.

The welcoming twinkle of lights strung around homes, or seeing a decorated tree in a window helps me to think that no matter what’s going on in the world, we’re able to come together.

As Kris Kringle said in the famous 1947 “Miracle on 34th Street” film, “Christmas isn’t just a day, it’s a frame of mind.” Being thoughtful, giving, welcoming and loving are traits we should carry with us throughout the year.

So, please, come along for the ride.

Holiday TV: Dec. 4: White House tree lighting, ‘Great Christmas Light Fight’

HOLIDAY TV TODAY: Dec. 4

Looking for something on TV to get you into the holiday spirit? This is an incomplete list of shows/movies with holiday themes or special episodes and only offers some of my favorites, some traditional favorites or some new things! As always, as they say, check your local listings.

7:30 a.m. — “Santa Paws 2: The Santa Pups,” Freeform

11 a.m. — “Mickey’s Twice Upon a Christmas,” Freeform

2:30 p.m. — “The Santa Clause,” Freeform

4:35 p.m. — “The Santa Clause 3: The Escape Clause,” Freeform

6:40 p.m. — “Elf,” Freeform

7 p.m. — “National Christmas Tree Lighting,” Hallmark

8 p.m. — “The Great Christmas Light Fight,” ABC

8:50 p.m. — “National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation,” Freeform