My kids turn the Christmas music on on December 1st every year. It seems we are at home a lot, even with all the rehearsals and concerts and the usual activities, because I feel like I'm listening to our Christmas CDs 36 hours a day. We're actually not much in the way of music listeners. We're not too fussy about background music, at least I'm not. I dislike 'clutter' in my auditory sphere, and enjoy silence, rather than layer upon layer of background sounds. When I put music on, I want to listen to it, I don't want it to be wallpaper for the rest of my life. My children seem to falling into step with my inclinations on the issue.
Except once it's December. Then the music is on constantly. Over and over. It begins to drive me a little batty, but I guess the holidays wouldn't be the holidays without this. For the past couple of years I've been buying new albums in self-defence, just to provide more variety. Our collection is heavily choral, and overwhelmingly classical, even though I try to nudge the kids in broader directions. (This year I've won Noah over on some of the Celtic stuff.) Here's what's on the roster:
The John Rutter Christmas Album
The Mystery of Christmas by the Elora Festival Singers
A Celtic Celebration by the Night Heron Consort
A Renaissance Christmas Celebration with the Waverly Consort
On Christmas Night by the Guelph Chamber Choir*
See Amid the Winter's Snow by the Menno Singers
O Come All Ye Faithful by the King's College Choir
A Classical Kids Christmas by Classical Kids
The Messiah by the Monteverdi Choir and the English Baroque Soloists
That's about 12 hours of music. I really think we listen to just about everything every day. In the past two years Erin has become a strong member of our very good community choir. She loves part-singing, memorizes her music at the drop of a hat and has a strong voice that blends well with the soprano section. I wonder if all those years of obsessively-listened-to Christmas choral music is what created this place in her heart for choral singing.
* This one is our all-time favourite, and it honestly has nothing to do with the fact that my dad sang on this CD. It's just a great collection, great arrangements of slightly eclectic Christmas carols beautifully sung.