Monday, 15 December 2008

Rockin' around the Christmas Tree

A new discovery: the Littleboys have terrible taste in music. Although it's probably all my fault...

To get them into the Christmas spirit and entertain them while The Doctor was away, I bought them a CD of Christmas songs aimed at kiddies called 'Rockin' around the Christmas Tree'. I must admit I didn't look very hard at it in the shop (Trotters in the Northcote Road, since you ask), as I never have time for such luxuries when the Littleboys are with me, but I assumed it would probably have old favourites like Jingle bells and Rudolph the red nosed reindeer on it. But no. It turns out to be a compilation of all the naffest Christmas pop songs ever, from Slade's Here is is, Merry Christmas to I wish it could be Christmas every day, with a really cheesed up version of Santa Claus is coming to Town and a massacre of White Christmas thrown in.

And guess what - they LOVE it. Littleboy 1 has stopped demanding to watch the DVD of The Jungle Book after their bath, but instead wants me to put on 'Christmas songs'. Whereupon he dances around the room energetically, wanting me to twirl him around and around and laughing hysterically. Littleboy 2 tries gamely to join in (although I note that he often has his rather censorious look on his face, so maybe he secretly disapproves).

So this weekend, we took the Littleboys to a carol service, in the rural Berkshire village where The Doctor's family have a cottage. It was rather magical; the walk up the pitch black lane, hearing the church bell and wrapped in our winter woollies, to the tiny, candelit church decorated beautifully with holly, poinsettias and berries; the traditional carols, which I remember so well practising in the school choir (I could still sing the descant even now); and the fact that the Littleboys were pretty well-behaved ( I know - again - what's going on?).

Littleboy 2, who was recovering from a nasty cold, fell asleep in his pushchair as soon as we entered the church, which was convenient for us at any rate. Littleboy 1, after an initial bout of liveliness, calmed down and sat on my lap and sucked his thumb for most of it, so he had the pleasure of me warbling carols in his ear. He played up a bit later, trying to slide on his stomach like a seal when we went up to look at the nativity crib, but luckily there were some much worse-behaved kids around (little girls of about seven sniggering and getting told off when the trendy vicar talked at length about how we should consider the poor unfortunates who 'don't even have a duvet'.).

Anyway, I thought he had enjoyed it but when we got home, I asked him if he had enjoyed the singing. He considered for a moment and then shook his head.

"No?" I pleaded. "Not even Away in a Manger?"

"No," he said. "Need more reindeer songs."

So, that's it then. My children prefer Slade to Away in a Manger. And I am to blame....

15 comments:

Bush Mummy said...

Mine too are heavily into Christmas tunes. We've got the 1950's Bing Crosby and Doris Day CD going 24/7 at the moment. I keep saying to myself that it is very important for children to be surrounded by music from a young age..

BM x

The Dotterel said...

Those Littleboys got *taste*!

The Dotterel said...

PS: And if it's any consolation whatsoever, I grew up hating all the stuff I had to sing in church and driving my parents mad with Christmas drivel, and yet sang the bass solos in Bach's Christmas Oratorio on Saturday. Honestly, you can never tell...

Laura McIntyre said...

LOL At least he likes music and you get a break from jungle book :)

A Confused Take That Fan said...

I am like the naughty seven year old girls. I sniggered about the duvet. It must be the way you tell it!
Can I go to that church please. It all sounds very English and very perfect. You will miss it if you are in US next year.

And this trashy CD will become your Christmas tradition. Just you wait...'oh mum...put that CD on again to remind us of Christmas'...aged 21

Iota said...

This strikes such a chord. I have some naff Christmas cds which the kids love, and I have only myself to blame. I distinctly remember being forced to play one in the car as long after Christmas as April, when I decided I'd had enough, and declared that Christmas music wasn't allowed after Easter.

Trouble is, how do you buy a nice jolly Christmas cd? I tried it this year, but you can't try them out beforehand, so I didn't bother in the end. I couldn't bear another dreadful one. I tried looking at reviews on Amazon, but didn't find anything. I know to avoid anything that has the words "kids' singalong" in the title, but beyond that, I'm still in the dark. Has anyone out there got a good suggestion?

Mud in the City said...

I bet the magic will come back to them as a key part of their childhoos when they're older.

And I ahve to admit a sneaking affection for dreadful Christmas songs - mainly down to them being played at full blast for the final week of term. I get that 'we're breaking up!' feeling whenever I hear them now!

Google Mummy said...

Excellent musical taste!

For Christmas goodies and fabulous prizes for your littleboys, you and even Daddy, why not check out the fabulous Christmas Bootie Competition at www.mini-et-moi.com

There are two hampers to give away, each worth over £350!

Happy Christmas!

Paradise Lost In Translation said...

NVG, the little church sounds just like the one in my parents Cotsowld village. (Only the vicar wasn't trendy. He was my dad & aged 60+) Christmas in a rural parish church has something going for it. I love it. Of ocurse I see everything through my rose tinted specs with built in x-ray vision, looking all the way from ALbania now...
re trying out CDs. You can in the UK, Iota. Shops have head phones & you listen in. Or maybe tehre's a reason they won't let one try Christmas albums out.....

Audrey said...

I'm with your kids. My children's carolling service was such a shock the first time I went because it was totally dull. Give me jingle bells any day!

nappy valley girl said...

BM - Bing Crosby and Doris Day sounds like good taste to me!

Dottorel - Well, truth be told, I do like carols but I'm not exactly a classical music scholar myself - I would definitely be singing along if it were something like 'Last Christmas' by Wham.

Laura - yes, we must count our blessings. I quite like Jungle Book but there are only so many times I can listen to 'I wanna walk like you' etc.

CTTF - I had some sympathies with the seven year olds too, as you can probably tell! And the number of times I have corpsed with giggles in church.....there was a particularly funny time at school when my friend and I realised, simultaneously, that the visiting preacher had a false hand.....

Iota - I think we all have these CDs - I remember listening to one with Frosty the Snowman and 'All I want for Xmas is my two front teeth' as a child, which I'm sure my mother dismissed as 'American rubbish'. But this one I bought is FAR, FAR more cheesy. There ought to be a decent one out there somewhere, but I've yet to find it.

Mud - I know what you mean, Slade etc reminds me of school too....but somehow hearing my three year old sing it just seems weird!

Google Mummy, thank you and I will check it out.

PLIT - well, the church isn't a million miles from the Cotswolds but the vicar was most definitely young and trendy....

Audrey - I'd like Jingle Bells, too, but it doesn't seem to be on my CD!

Pearl said...

Ha! No doubt they've been ruined by an early-childhood exposure to Slade.
:-)
Pearl

Millennium Housewife said...

We're always to blame, especially when they start therapy, it's all to do with us and our rubbish parenting apparently. Still, I blame My Mother too, it's how it goes! MH

GoneBackSouth said...

Quite right too. It's never too soon to start their musical education! Don't worry, it's the "loving music" part that's the key here - that will stay with them for life. Noddy Holder or otherwise.

nappy valley girl said...

Pearl - I fear you're right. Do you think it is too late to stop the rot?

MH - well, I guess we're either going to like or rebel against our parents' musical taste. My parents used to play Abba, Blondie and Billy Joel in the car - all of which I love....

GBS - how funny if they turn out to be classical virtuosos, inspired by Noddy?