Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Putting a Personal Swing into the Holidays.

When Spouse and I were married, the favors we gave to our guests was a 2-CD set: one was a mix of romantic/mushy songs and the other was a mix of holiday tunes.

Since that year, I've carried on the tradition of just a CD mix of holiday tunes, and gift it to family and friends. While the CDs for our wedding were a mix of his music and mine, my general rule for the holiday mix I do annually, is I can only use "my" holiday music. I've relaxed that a bit, but 92% of the tracks are guaranteed to be just mine....I may whork a little bit (he's got some really choice tunes). 

(The CD is really a present from both of us, as I receive at least 6 "new"* holiday CDs every year from Spouse, so while it may be classified as "mine", he had a hand in a lot of what I have, and use.)

The CD comes in really handy. 

First, I have a beloved group of gals, who I affectionately refer to as The Arts Fest Mafia. We get together once a month for supper at a local restaurant (no chains, generally speaking), and volunteer on a number of arts' related events in our city - hence my moniker. 

In December, we gather to celebrate the holidays with a potluck dinner, and exchange $1 gifts. Even though it's never a surprise, they always seem very happy to receive the year's holiday music mix. Since I create the cover myself, and it is music I already own, I only have out of pocket costs for the CD and the plastic cover, it stays within the parameters of the exchange. 

Side note: these ladies are so creative when it comes to $1 gifts. Half the fun of the December gathering is seeing what everyone came up with. Every single one of these ladies feeds my soul. 

Second, Spouse has huge families, so it's really not feasible to get every single one of them (all of whom I love dearly) a "traditional" gift, although I want them to know how much I love them. The CD is personal enough and hopefully, a nice way for them to think of us when they listen to each year's CD. 

Third, if I ever have that "Oh crap" moment, it is easy peasy to burn another CD and poof, gift. 

I've done a pretty good job of not using the same song more than once - only four instances in the last 10 years. I do keep a spreadsheet so it is easier to check - YES, thank you, I *do* happen to know I am a nerd. 

Not to ruin anyone's surprise .... here is Jen's 2013 Holiday Mix

While I do like all of the songs, a few were chosen for specific reasons:
- Track #3 by Odetta: this year, not unlike all of them, has brought it with certain challenges, let's say. I like the thought behind this song - Keep on movin' it on.  
- Track #12: I was lucky enough to meet and hear We Banjo 3 this summer, and was thrilled that they have a holiday track. 
- Track #23: Dave Brubeck was a hell of a jazz man and he graced the planet for a lot of decades. He passed away last year, still performing may I add, and I wanted to remember him here too. Such an amazing person. I wish I'd been able to see him live....

Do you have a go-to present that you like to give or make
for special family and friends?

* - we do a lot of trolling at used music joints for used CDs, so while it is new to us, the CD itself is not "new". 

1 comment:

  1. Hooray for the holiday mix cd! I always look forward to it.