Varsity Facility Services Top 10 Christmas Music Countdown

Varsity Facility Services Top 10 Christmas Music Countdown

We chose 10 random members of our Executive Team throughout the country and asked them what their favorite Christmas song is and asked them to share some of their favorite Christmas memories, traditions or stories.

Check back every day between now and Christmas for a new addition to our countdown

 

A memorable Christmas song from Shane's Christmas memory to the right is "The Christmas Shoes"

I remember a song that was played a lot that year, called "The Christmas Shoes." It was quite poignant for me as the song recounts the events experienced by a narrator completing the last of his gift-shopping on Christmas Eve.

In the checkout aisle, a young boy is ahead of him, wishing to purchase a pair of expensive shoes for his terminally ill mother, explaining to the cashier that he hasn't much time remaining before she passes and he wants her to appear presentable before Jesus. However, he lacks enough money to pay for the shoes.

The narrator ends up paying for the shoes, and the song closes on the note that the experience has permanently changed the narrator, reflecting on the true meaning of the Christmas season.

 

Shane Campbell – Christmas Memory

It was Christmas of 2001.

The world was still reeling from the tragedies of 9-11 and my family was reelling from the news of my wife's terminal illness. She was on hospice and less than a week from passing away at Christmastime.

I realized that my daughter and I didn't have much in the house for Christmas dinner, so I went to the grocery store to pick up some food for us and a few family members who would come by for frequent visits during this difficult time.

In a bit of an emotional fog, I walked around the store and filled up my cart with a bunch of random food items needed for the next couple weeks. It was a very emotional day.

As I stood there in a daze, the nice clerk behind the counter rang everything up. As I recall, the total was around $100 worth of food and misc. items for a Christmas I was not looking forward to.

The joy of this Christmas had escaped me.

I was shocked out of my daze when the clerk said, "This food’s already been paid for."

I asked who had paid for it and she pointed to a woman who was just leaving the store.

I recognized her. It was my friend and coworker, Jennifer Campbell, whose husband had passed away just a year or two earlier.

That act of kindness and caring from a friend who knew what I was going through, made such a difference in my life and Christmas that year.

Geoff Duern – Favorite Christmas Memory

Opening stockings at the grandparents on Christmas morning

christmas-morning-stockings

 

 

Geoff's favorite song is "Huron Carol" (Twas in the Moon of Wintertime).

Click here for a version of The Huron Carol by the Canadian Tenors

 

 

Larry's favorite Christmas song is "Mary's Lullaby" by The Lower Lights

CLICK HERE for "Mary's Lullaby" by The Lower Lights

 

Larry Kirby – My Christmas Prayer

What do you want for Christmas?
Is the question of the day
What is your desire?
On this glorious and happy day

We love the noise and bustle
The carols and the trees
We all love the presents
To give them and receive

But beautiful toys will tarnish
Shiny bikes will rust
All the bows and ribbons
In the trash will be thrust

The food will all be eaten
With great haste and gluttony
All our credit cards over used
Spent all our time and money

The only things that matters
When all is said and done
Are loving friends and family
And serving our fellowman

And thinking of the baby
Watching what we do and say
Be a little more like the Christ child
Is my Christmas prayer today

Rob Ridge – Christmas Memories

Rob remembers growing up getting actual pieces of coal in his stocking.

origin-lumps-coal-christmas-800x800

It seems his father wanted to always remind him that, even though he did get presents, he wasn’t ALL good, so he’d put the coal in Rob and his siblings’ stockings every year until one year, when Rob was 16, he told his dad he had had enough!  No more coal in the stockings at Christmas!

Also, Rob’s grandmother always puts on her mini-skirt and hoop earrings and teaches her grandkids how to dance around the Christmas tree.
She is still dancing at 103 years of age, and takes care of herself in her apartment in Fresno, CA.

 

 

Rob's favorite song is "The Christmas Song (Chestnuts Roasting...)" by Nat King Cole and Frank Sinatra

Click here for a recording and slideshow of Nat and Frank

Click here for actual video footage from 1961, of Nat King Cole singing “The Christmas Song”

 

 

Brian's favorite Christmas song is "Silver Bells."

CLICK HERE for "Silver Bells" by Bing Crosby

 

Brian Hales – Yearly Traditions

We do a candlelight dinner on Christmas Eve, in our P.J.s, with  Roast Beef, Artichokes and Apple Cider.

After the kids are asleep and Santa visits, my wife and I watch "It's A Wonderful Life."

Bedford-Falls-its-a-wonderful-life-9486019-1821-1219

Marc Collings – Christmas Traditions

Every year our family of six travels to stay at a hotel in Salt Lake City for 2 nights. During this time, we visit lights in Salt Like City, drive through the avenues light watching, and finish last minute shopping. We finish our trip on Christmas Eve by visiting Grandparents during the day, and then Christmas Even night we spend with extend family singing carols and reading the Christmas stories and having the kids act out the Nativity scene. I have also watched “It’s a Wonderful Life” every year for 25 years.“   It serves as a remind of all the blessings I have and that “No man is a failure who has friends.” (~Clarence)

Wonderful-Life-Friends

 

Nate Long – Historical Christmas Miracle during WWI on Christmas Eve, 1914

With British and German forces separated only by a no-man's land littered with fallen comrades, sounds of a German Christmas carol suddenly drifted across the frigid air.

"It was a beautiful moonlit night, frost on the ground, white almost everywhere: and at about 7 or 8 in the evening there was a lot of commotion in the German trenches and there were these lights -- I don't know what they were. And then they sang, "Silent Night" – "Stille Nacht." I shall never forget it, it was one of the highlights of my life. I thought, what a beautiful tune," Pvt. Albert Moren, a British soldier, wrote in a journal.

Then, during that first Christmas Day during World War I, in 1914, something magical happened, at least in some areas. 

Soldiers, the number is hard to quantify but believed to be around 100,000, who had been killing each other by the tens of thousands for months, climbed out of their soggy trenches to seek a shred of humanity amid the horrors of war.

Hands reached out across a narrow divide, presents were exchanged, and in Flanders Fields a century ago, a spontaneous Christmas truce briefly lifted the human spirit...

[CLICK HERE TO READ MORE]

Eric Luke – Christmas Memories

Music – singing and piano playing – to our family is an integral part of the Christmas holidays.  Some of my earliest memories are of my family, on crisp frigid Idaho evenings, Christmas caroling to friends in our neighborhood with me beating a small drum to the song, “The Little Drummer Boy.” The yuletide season still carries my mind gently to distant school Christmas choir performances and church choir rehearsals, usually with my father leading, or my mother playing, or harmonizing together with sisters and later with my own children.

DrummerBoy

Casey's favorite song is, "O Come, O Come Emanuel"

Click here for "O Come, O Come Emmanuel" by Pentatonix"

Click here for instrumental version by The Piano Guys

The words and the music of "O come, O come, Emmanuel" developed separately. The Latin text is first documented in Germany in 1710, whereas the tune most familiar in the English-speaking world has its origins in 15th-century France. (from Wikipedia)

Casey Killian – Christmas Traditions

Christmas Eve, our entire family, grandparents, children and grandchildren all meet at our home to sing Christmas music together. It is great to spend time together with the whole extended family.

Each year, from the time I was a teenager, we have identified a family or families in need and anonymously delivered presents and other needed items. These experiences have been great blessings in my life, and now the lives of our children.

I always loved watching "A Christmas Story" with my family, and now that tradition has continued with my wife & children.

a-christmas-story-1

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