Tag Archives: christmas

Merry Christmas!

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December 25, 2017 · 8:33 am

15 Fun Facts About A Charlie Brown Christmas

Christmastime is here…

Sad Charlie Brown GIF

Happiness and cheer….

Merry Christmas Snowing GIF

Fun for all that children call their favorite time of year…

A Charlie Brown Christmas Dancing GIF

Throughout the month of December, we’ve been diving in to some of our favorite holiday movies with trivia, fun facts, and more…in case you’re late to the party, you can check out some of our posts here:

Today we’re gonna explore one of my all-time favorite Christmas movies, A Charlie Brown Christmas with 15 fun facts you might not know about this made-for-TV holiday special.

charlie-brown-christmas

Originally aired on CBS, A Charlie Brown Christmas got off to a rocky start…a small budget, a writer/creator who didn’t believe in the project and a skeptical network were not exactly the playing pieces the production team was looking for…however, the special became a fan favorite almost immediately and is now one of the most popular TV holiday specials in history, second only to Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer.

Starring several unknown child actors (many of whom did not get credit in the film) and backed by a score that’s come to be synonymous with Christmas, A Charlie Brown Christmas was the perfect disaster the Peanuts franchise needed…and, much like Charlie Brown’s little tree, just needed a little holiday love…

15 Fun Facts About A Charlie Brown Christmas

A Charlie Brown Christmas was the first animated Peanuts cartoon.

Charlie Brown Animation GIF

CBS and Coca-Cola only gave producers a measly $76,000 to cover production costs of A Charlie Brown Christmas. They only had a 6 month lead time and no idea how to budget the money. Thankfully, they made it all back, though. Writer/creator Charles Schulz, animator Bill Melendez, and executive producer Lee Mendelson wound up earing about $5 million for the special through 2000.

snoopy charlie brown GIF by Peanuts

Much like The Flintstones, A Charlie Brown Christmas was going to have a laugh track. Schulz was so offended by the idea, he left the room and didn’t return for several minutes. When he did return, Mendelson got the hint and the laugh track was canned.

Snoopy’s voice is actually Melendez barking and chuffing into a microphone, then sped up to give the recording a more emotive quality.

charlie brown GIF by Peanuts

The soundtrack to A Charlie Brown Christmas is about as “Christmas” as Santa himself; however, Schulz hated jazz and was not a fan of Vice Guaraldi’s arrangement.

Charlie Brown Television GIF

Because Schulz’s Peanuts comic strip was never meant to be animated – and because Melendez was unwilling to stray from Schulz’s distinctive character designs – it was a constant battle to animate Charlie Brown’s head. Its round shape made it difficult to depict Charlie’s head turning and, as was the case with most of the characters, his arms were too short to scratch his head.

charlie brown GIF by Peanuts

Snoopy, by contrast, was the show’s easiest figure to animate.

charlie brown GIF by Peanuts

When it came time to screen the special, CBS hated it. They thought it was slow and lacked energy. To add insult, someone misspelled Schulz in the credits, adding a “T” to his last name. Schulz himself thought the whole project was a disaster due to the crude animation.

A Charlie Brown Christmas GIF

However, viewers loved it! A Charlie Brown Christmas pulled a 50 share on its first viewing, meaning half of all households with a TV turned on were watching it (this equated to about 15 million people in 1965.

A Charlie Brown Christmas Singing GIF

CBS might also be ashamed to know that A Charlie Brown Christmas is actually the second longest-running Christmas special in TV history after Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer. Take that, jerks.

charlie brown snow GIF by Peanuts

The special also inspired viewers to scrap the aluminum tree, which came out only 7 years prior, for small living trees just like Charlie Brown’s. About four years after the special aired, aluminum trees were phased out and are now collector’s items.

Charlie Brown GIF by Peanuts

Peter Robbins, the voice behind Charlie Brown, continued to voice the character until he was 13 years old. In November 2015, the 59-year-old Robbins pleaded guilty to making criminal threats against a mobile home park manager and a sheriff.  The actor claimed that schizophrenia and bipolar disorder led him to making the threats and he was sentenced to four years and eight months in prison. What a blockhead.

Image result for Peter Robbins

Every child role was voiced by an actual child. Some of the child actors were so young at the time that they couldn’t even read the script.

A Charlie Brown Christmas also won an Emmy Award for Outstanding Children’s Program and a Peabody Award for excellence in programming.

a charlie brown christmas dancing GIF

Though Schulz was not a fan of the animated classic, A Charlie Brown Christmas gave birth to several other Peanuts animated specials, including It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown (1966), A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving (1973), It’s the Easter Beagle, Charlie Brown (1974), Be My Valentine, Charlie Brown (1975), Happy New Year, Charlie Brown (1986), It’s Christmas Time Again, Charlie Brown (1992) and It’s Arbor Day, Charlie Brown (1995).

Sometimes you just need a little fun in your life! Check back every week for a new “Just Bee-cause” post, where I discuss everything from celebrity news to favorite videos and websites!

 

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Every Time a Bell Rings…

its-a-wonderful-life

“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

Come back every Tuesday for “The Bees Knees”, where I post the best quotes from my favorite movies, TV shows, songs, and books.

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10 One-Bite Appetizers for the Holidays

Hosting for the holidays doesn’t have to be stressful with this tasty one-bite appetizers. Whether you’re getting ready for Christmas dinner or planning a New Year’s party, these easy and quick bites will keep guests noshing and talking while you take care of stuff in the kitchen!

one-bite-appetizers

10 One-Bite Appetizers for the Holidays

Fried Green Tomatoes

tomatoes

Avocado Deviled Eggs

egg

Sweet Bacon Crackers

bacon crackers

Spicy Tuna Wonton Cups

wonton

Stuffed Turkey Sausage Rolls

sausage rolls

Vegan Spinach Puffs

spinach puffs

Crispy Arancini

balls

Corn Dog Mini Muffins

corn dog

Prosciutto Wrapped Melon

melon

Sausage Bites with Cranberry and Cheddar

sausage bites

Every Monday is a “Reci-bee” post, where I share my favorite recipes, recipe collections, and cooking and baking hints and tips. 

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15 Stocking Stuffers for Book Lovers

Ok guys, Christmas is coming but THERE’S STILL TIME to get your favorite bookworm a little something special for their stocking…

stocking-stuffers-for-book-lovers

Some think that shopping for a reader is difficult, since you don’t know what books are on their shelves already…but you can still please your favorite Jane Austen, Harry Potter, or Mark Twain fan without having to step foot in a bookstore!  Here are 15 Stocking Stuffers for Book Lovers that you can buy right from the comfort of your own home (thanks, Amazon!).

15 Stocking Stuffers for Book Lovers

A page a day keeps the bordem away…

Wear your love of books on your sleeve…or arm or leg or face…

The perfect gift for those trying to keep track of their reading list.

Cook recipes from your favorite stories (I have this book and it’s adorable).

Not EVERY book lover loves tea…but almost every book lover loves a novel pun…

Novel Teas contains 25 teabags individually tagged with literary quotes from the world over, made with the finest English Breakfast tea.

Speaking of puns…

Every great book usually grabs you with the first line…

A little cushion for those long reading nights…

Every book reader needs this sign!

Keep on coastin’ with these Jane Austen coasters…

I always thought Quidditch was a deadly game…

Great for late-night reading…

If your book lover needs some tunage to set the mood, try this relaxing CD…

Music for Book Lovers

Or make your entire room smell like a bookstore…

Finally, this book and wine caddy is perfect for reading in bed, in the tub, or just on the couch curled up in a Snuggie…

Looking for a new book to read? Check in every Friday for a “Bee Happy” post, where I share reviews of books I’ve read or other book-themed lists.

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13 Fun Facts about National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation

It’s not Christmas without visiting the best Chicago family on screen: The Griswald’s.

Christmas Vacation GIF

This comedy of errors is a classic in the Christmas movie lineup, and after having just marathoned all the Vacation movies, I have to say that Christmas Vacation is probably my favorite.

Since we’re getting closer and closer to Christmas, if you haven’t poured yourself a moose mug of eggnog and watched Christmas Vacation yet, it’s about damn time you did. To help get you in the mood, here are 13 Fun Facts about National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation!

Christmas Vacation GIF

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13 Fun Facts About National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation

Clark Griswald’s childhood home was the same house used to film the TV series, Bewitched…and it’s actually not a house at all. It’s part of the Warner Bros. back lot, located on what is known as Blondie Street. The rest of the neighborhood is located there, as well, including the home of Todd and Margo, which is where Roger Murtaugh (Danny Glover) and his family lived in Lethal Weapon.

Image result for blondie street, christmas vacation

The only other Christmas movie to come out in 1989 besides Christmas Vacation was Prancer. Johnny Galecki (Rusty Griswald) starred in both.

Image result for johnny galecki christmas vacation

Christmas Vacation had an unusually high budget for a comedy: $27 million (probably to pay for all those lights!). However the movie had no problem making its money back. Its final domestic gross was more than $71 million.

Christmas Vacation Laughing GIF

Christmas Vacation, which was a sequel to National Lampoon’s Vacation, spurred its OWN sequel, National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation 2: Cousin Eddie’s Island Adventure. It was made for TV and finds cousin Eddie and his family stranded on an island in the South Pacific. Not surprisingly, it has a 12% approval rating on Rotten Tomatoes.

Image result for National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation 2: Cousin Eddie's Island Adventure

Eddie’s sweater/Dickie combo was actually a suggestion from Randy Quaid’s wife. You can buy your own Dickie, as well as your own set of Moose mugs and much more, right here: http://www.christmasvacationcollectibles.com/.

Christmas Vacation Ok GIF

Christmas Vacation was the final film for Mae Questel (Aunt Bethany), who started her career voicing Betty Boop in 1931.

Christmas Vacation No GIF

There were no rehearsals for the actors on Christmas Vacation. Chevy Chase’s tendency to ad-lib and improvise made such preparation useless.

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The Griswald’s neighbor, Todd, is played by Nicholas Guest, brother to actor/director Christopher Guest (Waiting for Guffman, Best in Show, The Princess Bride, Spinal Tap).

Image result for nicholas guest, christmas vacation

The famous insult scene where Chase rants on about his boss took a lot of planning. In order for the long-winded rant to go on without stopping, Chase had the crew place cue cards all over the set with various insults on them so he wouldn’t have to stop.

The production crew originally had a trained squirrel for the scene where it wreaks havoc on the house. Unfortunately, it died the day before the scene was shot. An untrained squirrel was used instead…adding to the chaos, of course.

Christmas Vacation GIF

Chase still has the PJ’s he wore in the film. His daughter has said that he wore them all the time.

Chevy Chase Christmas GIF by WhoSay

Chase broke his pinky filming the scene in the front yard where he’s kicking and hitting the decorations. Like a pro, he didn’t break character, but he used the pain to continue through the scene.

When Clark Griswold is having a hard time getting the Christmas lights to work, he turns to his son, Rusty, who answers with a classic Chevy Chase gag – looking at an imaginary watch on his wrist and excusing himself.

Gotta Go Christmas Vacation GIF

Sometimes you just need a little fun in your life! Check back every week for a new “Just Bee-cause” post, where I discuss everything from celebrity news to favorite videos and websites!

 

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10 Christmas Cookies with 5 Ingredients or Less

I love baking cookies for the holidays, but one of the most stressful elements of holiday baking is buying all the ingredients.  Frankly I don’t have room to store 5 bags of flour, 4 bags of sugar, and 10 sticks of butter…however, there are some tasty cookies you can make using only a handful of ingredients!

Not only are these great for holiday baking, but 5-ingredient or less cookies are also great for clearing out your baking cabinet to make room for new ingredients.  Some of these are even no-bake recipes, so you can make several batches without overworking your oven.

Easy to give as gifts and make for family and friends, these quick and easy cookies will help you hack your holiday baking!

10 Christmas Cookies with 5 Ingredients or Less

  1. Shortbread Cookies
  2. Pumpkin Chocolate Cookies
  3. Pecan Bars
  4. Oreo Cheesecake Cookies
  5. Oatmeal Cookies
  6. Buckeyes
  7. Chocolate Chip Cookies
  8. Coconut Cookies
  9. Monster Cookies
  10. Almond Florentines

Every Monday is a “Reci-bee” post, where I share my favorite recipes, recipe collections, and cooking and baking hints and tips. 

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