Clipper in a Christmas hat on background.

I have a million things to do right now, yet thought it was more important (or maybe just more fun) to share with you my warm fuzzies of Christmas time…starting with what I like to watch in December. The next installment in this short series will be to share what I like to hear. Then taste, smell and feel. An advice column of engaging your senses in the holiday season. To begin, here are my movies of the season…

Bing Crosby’s White Christmas is my favorite of the old school classics. I watched it as a child, and continue to enjoy it every year. I love musicals generally, so the singing and dancing make it timeless for me. Plus, it’s funny and sentimental…checks all my boxes. Miracle on 34th Street is often my first-watch of the season, since it opens during the Macy’s parade—perfect for Thanksgiving weekend viewing. The last of my old-timey favorites is It’s a Wonderful Life. “Mary! Mary!” Classic!

Then there is an in-between grouping, those that I’ve enjoyed for many years, seen at least a dozen times each. The hilarity of Bill Murray as Ebenezer in Scrooged, Chevy Chase’s Christmas Vacation, the additional family dysfunction of A Christmas Story. And the tear-jerker of this group, Whitney Houston as The Preacher’s Wife (although I’ve cried at some of the comedies, too, since I am an utter sap for cheesy movies—a category where Christmas movies rule).

Moving into the next generation…my absolute favorite two Christmas movies, the two that I watch religiously, every single year…not necessarily because they are the best movies of all time (they’re not!), but because I simply love them. They scratch the itch for all I’m looking for in a holiday movie. Number one is Love Actually. All-star cast, great soundtrack, happy ending, laughs and tears. Number two is The Holiday. Same reasons, except even more beautiful people with lots of soft-focus close-ups.

Other top picks in this newer collection of rewatchables incluide Will Ferrell in Elf…utter goofball cheese; Four Christmases, a more adult take on dysfunctional families for the holidays; an even more adult take…Why Him? Rated R and hysterically funny. And the newest addition, Last Christmas, a sweet, fun heart-warmer.

Finally, I’ll include a plug for this year’s Hallmark channel must-watch, Sister Swap, a two-pack of back-to-back movies written by my friend Claire Boyles and her brother. I’d love to write a sappy, feel-good, tear-jerker movie with my brother!

Basically, my standard is a Christmas movie that warms my heart, that makes me laugh or cry or both, that preaches the basic good of humanity and the connection we all yearn for and can find during the holidays if we’re lucky. I am very lucky!

So, what did I forget? What are your favorites?

Next up, Christmas music favorites…fa la la la la…