I inherited my mother’s love of Christmas music.

It’s her favorite. 

No, really.

When I was growing up, we always started listening to it the first day of November.

Now, don’t go making assumptions.  We were never one of those families that hurried past Thanksgiving to get to Christmas.  It was and continues to be a treasured holiday for us.

But Advent came to the stereo early so as to maximize the amount of time to enjoy the sounds of the season.

[I will add here that, in performing in The Nutcracker for 11 years, I do not really associate it with Christmastime as much as fall.  From Labor Day until the first week in December, I spent my Sunday afternoons listening to that same music over and over in practice.  So it’s not always the most pleasant sound to my ears when I walk into a department store.  When I hear musicians playing it in the Boston subway, I automatically start recounting the dance, whatever the piece.  And it usually makes me nervous.  The only scene I never performed in was the Battle, but no one ever blasts that over the loudspeakers anyway.] 

I thoroughly enjoy Christmas music.  And I am not ashamed to admit it here on the world wide web.

Anyway, one of my husband’s beloved musical artists, Andrew Peterson, put out a Christmas  album a few years ago.  It’s not your typical holiday affair.  It’s actually a musical.  Yes, you can get tickets.  If you’re lucky enough to live where they are actually performing it during the holiday season.  But it’s also a great CD.  It’s the entire Christmas story – starting in the Old Testament and moving through the New.  It’s the tale of redemption in its entirety. 

But when he first bought the CD, he was convinced that I would fall in love with one particular song performed by Jill Phillips. 

He knows me so well.

And it’s been my favorite Christmas song for the past two years.

(“Labor of Love”, performed by Jill Phillips on Andrew Peterson’s album, Behold the Lamb of God)