Christmas movies inspire me

Here it is, just one day after Christmas, and I am already in serious holiday withdrawal mode.

Quick, somebody give me a sugar cookie.

Starting on Halloween, I watched a Christmas movie every day on TV. Some days, I watched more than one a day.

I say “watched,” but mostly they were just holiday white noise to have on in the house as I went about my day.

Nicer, certainly, than listening to TV news of late.

Holiday movies – the last ones run through this weekend – are engineered to conjure warm and fuzzy feelings of love, joy and peace on Earth, goodwill to man and woman. And call me a sucker, but that’s why I love them so.

If only, in real life, we could live by those sentiments year-round.

Toward that wish, here are some of my favorite quotes and bits of dialogue from Hollywood Christmas movies to hold close in our hearts over the coming year.

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Clarence: Strange, isn’t it? Each man’s life touches so many other lives. When he isn’t around he leaves an awful hole, doesn’t he?
It’s a Wonderful Life

The Conductor: Seeing is believing, but sometimes the most real things in the world are the things we can't see.
The Polar Express

Kris Kringle: Oh, Christmas isn’t just a day, it’s a frame of mind . . . and that’s what’s been changing. That’s why I’m glad I’m here, maybe I can do something about it.
Miracle on 34th Street

Narrator: He puzzled and puzzled till his puzzler was sore. Then the Grinch thought of something he hadn’t before. Maybe Christmas, he thought . . . doesn’t come from a store. Maybe Christmas, perhaps, means a little bit more.
How the Grinch Stole Christmas

Linda Mason: My father was a lot like you, just a man with a family. Never amounted to much, didn’t care. But as long as he was alive, we always had plenty to eat and clothes to keep us warm.
Jim Hardy: Were you happy?
Linda Mason: Yes.
Jim Hardy: Then your father was a very successful man.
Holiday Inn

Kevin McCallister: Okay, this is extremely important. Will you please tell Santa that instead of presents this year, I just want my family back? No toys. Nothing but Peter, Kate, Buzz, Megan, Linnie and Jeff. And my aunt and my cousins. And if he has time, my Uncle Frank. Okay?
Home Alone

The Rev. Henry Brougham: Tonight I want to tell you the story of an empty stocking. Once upon a midnight clear, there was a child’s cry. A blazing star hung over a stable and wise men came with birthday gifts. We haven’t forgotten that night down the centuries; we celebrate it with stars on Christmas trees, the sound of bells and with gifts. But especially with gifts. You give me a book; I give you a tie. Aunt Martha has always wanted an orange squeezer and Uncle Henry could do with a new pipe. We forget nobody, adult or child. All the stockings are filled – all that is, except one. And we have even forgotten to hang it up. The stocking for the child born in a manger. It’s his birthday we are celebrating. Don’t ever let us forget that. Let us ask ourselves what he would wish for most, and then let each put in his share. Loving kindness, warm hearts and the stretched out hand of tolerance. All the shining gifts that make peace on Earth.
The Bishop’s Wife

Ebenezer Scrooge: I do not make merry at Christmas . . .
Fred: That is certainly true.
Ebenezer Scrooge: And I cannot afford to make other people merry.
Fred: That is certainly not true!
The Muppet Christmas Carol

Buddy the Elf: I just like to smile! Smiling's my favorite.
Elf

Prime Minister: Whenever I get gloomy with the state of the world, I think about the arrivals gate at Heathrow Airport. General opinion's starting to make out that we live in a world of hatred and greed, but I don't see that. It seems to me that love is everywhere. Often, it's not particularly dignified or newsworthy, but it's always there – fathers and sons, mothers and daughters, husbands and wives, boyfriends, girlfriends, old friends . . . If you look for it, I've got a sneaky feeling you'll find that love actually is all around.
Love Actually

[Lisa Gutierrez is a reporter in Kansas City, Mo., who scans the non-NCR news every week for interesting pieces about sisters. She can be reached at lisa11gutierrez@gmail.com.]

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