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Christmas favorites with the Belmont Vision

For those of you old enough to remember the print edition of the Belmont Vision, one of the paper’s great rituals was that of the Christmas blurb. This year we’re finally bringing the tradition into the 21st century, sharing our favorite tunes, snacks, gifts old and new as well as some of our favorite activities during the holiday season.

Song: While my standard Christmas tunes revolve around pretty much any Bing Crosby version, I always pick one slightly different or off song to be my Christmas song of the year. This year’s choice is “Boogie Woogie Santa Claus” by Patti Page. It has a full band, nice beat, and has just enough classic vocal sound to flow well with a those standard Christmas song filled playlists everyone is putting together on Spotify.



With all the rich and creamy foods and several spirals of ham offered at different Christmas shindigs, it’s easy to get tired of eating it. So a few years ago, my mom decided that instead of having a repeat meal on Christmas Day, our family was going to make different dishes. And it stuck. One year our feast was enchiladas. Another, three different soups. Steaks, baked potatoes and blueberry stuffed french toast have all been on the menu. While it differs from the standard Christmas time festivities, it certainly is a delicious tradition.

Gift: My sister is 8-years-old and always excited about the holidays. I can’t pinpoint my favorite gift I’ve given her but she is easily my favorite person to shop for because I know no matter what I buy her, she’s going to just love it.

–Autumn Allison

Song: I really like “I Am Joseph” by Steven Curtis Chapman. The guitar riffs sound an awful lot like Kansas’ “Dust in the Wind” but the lyrics have provided me a new lens in which to see Christmas– sometimes we’re scared like Mary or Joseph, sometimes we’re common folk like shepherds and we can even be prideful like King Herod but regardless of our situation “God is with us/God is for us.”

Food: When I came to Belmont, I realized how much I loved and missed my mom’s cooking– whatever it was. I wanted REAL mashed potatoes and chicken chili because those were things I couldn’t get in the caf. I thought I had died and gone to Southern Living heaven, y’all.

 Tradition: This is a bit of a new tradition, but the last few years my grandparents have rented a house on Jekyll Island, Ga. for the week of Christmas. This has been a great opportunity to recharge my batteries and spend time with family. Last year, I took a solo bike ride on the island, taking photos along the way. What better way to celebrate the birth of Christ than to wander around God’s creation?!

–Katie Greene

Song: Joy To The World

 Tradition:  Decorating the Christmas Tree

 Food: Turkey

 Gift: When I was four I got a giant aircraft carrier with planes for Christmas. It was awesome.

–Will Hadden

Song: “Baby, It’s Cold Outside” – Specifically the version in the movie Elf, because who doesn’t love that movie and the adorable couple that is Jovie and Buddy the Elf?

Food: Anything chocolate. My fam

ily is chocolate-obsessed, and this obsession comes to the forefront during December. There’s chocolate everywhere–from our advent calendars to Fanny May chocolates wrapped up

like presents to cookies!

Gift: I’d have to say the karaoke machine my parents gave me a few years ago. I love singing, so it was the perfect gift for me. I’m constantly adding new karaoke CDs to use with it (many are Disney, because Disney movies are awesome…don’t judge!). Now no party is complete without a karaoke session!

–Alina Tichacek

Tradition: Instead of having the typical Christmas Eve dinner like ham and whatnot, we put a California twist on things and have authentic Mexican food. All the tamales, enchiladas, burritos and chips one could ever dream of.

Food: Decorated/frosted sugar cookies are my weakness. Especially with fancy sprinkles or if they are in festive shapes and whatnot. Nom nom nom.

Gift: Last year, I only asked for one thing: Disneyland tickets. I love Disneyland more than any place in the world, so spending two full days there with my family was the most magical thing I could ever ask for. Seriously, I’m like a 5-year-old when it comes to Disneyland because it’s the greatest.

–Kelly Brickey

Song:There are a lot of great Christmas songs out there, but my personal favorite is “Last Christmas” by Wham! After all, when I think of Christmas, I think of George Michael’s tale of sacrifice and heartbreak told in the form of a quintessential 80s song.

Tradition: My favorite tradition has to be our annual family dinner. Something about the delicious food and the loving company that family provides makes it feel all the more like a truly special holiday.

Candy: My favorite food is the candy. Christmas is the perfect holiday for alleviating my sweet tooth and the delicious and unique candy treats that I get each Christmas keep me satisfied, while also always making me want more.

Gift:My favorite gift that I’ve ever received is a Nintendo 64. The 64 was my very first gaming system and I still have very fond memories of playing it for days on end. I can still pick out specific days in which I remember spending all day, sometimes all night, in the basement with games like “Ocarina of Time”,“Majora’s Mask”, “Pokemon Stadium” and “Star Fox 64”. These games were my childhood and the gift of the 64 started it all.

–Sam Cowan

Song:My favorite Christmas song is Penguin, James Penguin by Brad Paisley. It is hilarious, as to be expected from him and is actually quite adorable. Everyone should look this up if they don’t know it.

Tradition:Every year, we would wrap presents for my dog, Muffin, and put them under the tree. Without fail, if you woke up in the middle of the night, you would find her laying in front of the tree guarding them as she slept. Then on Christmas morning, we would give her the okay and put her presents in front of her and she would open them without any help from anyone around her. We have so many fantastic pictures of her amidst her wrapping paper wreckage.

Gift: This isn’t quite my favorite gift, but it is the best way I have received a gift. My high school boyfriend came to my house with a box that could have fit my 65 pound dog inside and weighed almost the same and gave no indication as to what was in it. He just motioned to it, I unwrapped it and inside was another box….and another box…and this continued for about seven boxes more and it turned out that they had all been weighted down with his mother’s old nursing textbooks. The smallest box just contained a note that said, “Check the glove compartment.” In his truck, he had a smaller box and inside it was the actual jewelry he had bought me. Definitely got points for that one.

–Heather Thompson

Screen shot 2013-12-02 at 11.25.22 AM

Tradition: It’s something that we have adopted

in recent years, but I love attending Christmas Eve candlelight service at 11pm. We didn’t start attending it until a few years ago, but I just enjoy celebrating with my family and being with them when Christmas begins.

Food: Would eggnog count as food? In Puerto Rican tradition, Spanish eggnog called “Coquito” is a must-have for the holidays. I always bug my dad around this time of year and ask him to make the first batch as soon as the holiday season begins.

Gift: One year for Christmas I received tickets to see Miami Hurricanes play in the Champs Sports Bowl. I had never been to a Miami game before in my life and it was the perfect present because it gave me a chance to see some of my dad’s family that I hadn’t seen in at least a year. Even though my Canes lost, I still enjoyed the game with my dad.

–Courtney Martinez


Song: I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Clause

Tradition: Opening a present on Christmas Eve before we go to bed

Food: Candy Cane cookies

Gift: Star Wars family car stickers

–Samantha Denlinger

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