Tag Archives: Christmas couple activities

10 Movies to Boost Your Holiday Spirit & Get You in the Mood

Now that Thanksgiving is over (in the USA), Christmas season is fully upon us. Perhaps you’re a total Christmas Fangirl, who delves into this season with all the excitement of a toddler in a ball pit. But maybe you’re more like me and struggle to get into the holiday mood.

When you listen to today’s podcast episode for Sex Chat for Christian Wives, you’ll hear about my challenges with this season and my determination to do better this year. One thing I’ve resolved to do, to channel my inner Santa, is engage in holiday activities I truly enjoy. Among those are great Christmas-themed movies.

If they have a romantic bent, all the better … because that reminds me that the holiday season is also a time to enjoy being a couple. ‘Tis also the season to be intimate!

With that in mind, here’s a list of Christmas movies to get yourself in the holiday spirit and in the mood for romance with your spouse! (Quoted descriptions all from IMDb.)

Illustration of movie camera with spotlight on blog post title

10. Christmas in Connecticut (1947). 

“A food writer who has lied about being the perfect housewife must try to cover her deception when her boss and a returning war hero invite themselves to her home for a traditional family Christmas.”

Movie still of couple riding in sleigh during snowfall

Dennis Morgan & Barbara Stanwyck

A domestic diva, I am not. Thus, I’ve always related well to this heroine’s efforts to appear like she’s got it all together for the holiday season, even if the truth doesn’t quite line up. But amid the comedy of this movie is a nice love story. And I admit (as you’ll see below) that I’m partial to the classics.

9. The Family Man (2000).

“A fast-lane investment broker, offered the opportunity to see how the other half lives, wakes up to find that his sports car and girlfriend have become a mini-van and wife.”

Close-up of couple

Tea Leone & Nicholas Cage

Accused of being a knock-off of It’s a Wonderful Life and filled with sap and saccharine, I respond that this film is “guilty as charged.” But that’s also what makes it a gem to watch! This movie hits all the right notes on what we believe about the deep power of love and family.

8. The Shop Around the Corner (1940).

“Two employees at a gift shop can barely stand each other, without realizing that they are falling in love through the post as each other’s anonymous pen pal.”

Heroine standing at the corner reading a book, while next to her hero reads a newspaper (both ignoring each other)

Margaret Sullivan & Jimmy Stewart

If that sounds a lot like the plot of You’ve Got Mail, that’s because it is. Nora Ephron didn’t remake the movie, but she used the same setup. The original story, however, was charmingly done with Jimmy Stewart and Margaret Sullivan and all takes place in the busy shopping season of the holidays.

7. Miracle on 34th Street (1947).

“When a nice old man who claims to be Santa Claus is institutionalized as insane, a young lawyer decides to defend him by arguing in court that he is the real thing.”

Heroine holding her daughter, with hero looking on

John Payne & Maureen O’Hara (and Natalie Wood)

Not only do we learn to believe in the spirit of Santa Claus, but a single mom finds love in the process. There’s also a remake from 1994 with Elizabeth Perkins and Dylan McDermott, which I thought I’d dislike (because I often dislike remakes) but it’s a rather sweet version as well.

6. White Christmas (1954).

“A successful song-and-dance team become romantically involved with a sister act and team up to save the failing Vermont inn of their former commanding general.”

Two couples dressed in Santa costumes and singing

Danny Kaye, Rosemary Clooney, Vera-Ellen, and Bing Crosby

I’ve always thought the plot of this film was a bit thin, but as an avenue for some fun dialogue, wonderful music and dancing, and a lot of Christmas glitz, it can’t be beat. Four incredibly talented actors/singers make this film a classic that’s still worth watching.

5. The Holiday Inn (1942).

“At an inn which is only open on holidays, a crooner and a hoofer vie for the affections of a beautiful up-and-coming performer.”

Hero playing piano and singing, while heroine sits nearby and sings along

Bing Crosby & Marjorie Reynolds

Speaking of musicals, this one has less glitz but more appeal to me. Bing Crosby is joined by Marjorie Reynolds and Fred Astaire in this delightful film that features many holidays, including Christmas. And this film boasts the first movie placement of Crosby crooning “White Christmas.”

4. The Nightmare Before Christmas (1993).

“Jack Skellington, king of Halloween Town, discovers Christmas Town, but his attempts to bring Christmas to his home cause confusion.”

Characters kissing on Pumpkin Hill with large moon behind them

Jack Skellington (“The Pumpkin King”) & Sally

Ah, Jack and Sally, what a beautiful kiss you shared on Pumpkin Hill! If a skeleton and a ragdoll can find love in the crazy world of Halloween Town, then there’s hope for all of us. Yes, I know this is a nontraditional choice, but it really is one of my favorites.

3. It’s a Wonderful Life (1946).

“An angel is sent from Heaven to help a desperately frustrated businessman by showing him what life would have been like if he had never existed.”

Close-up of couple after dance/pool scene

Donna Reed & Jimmy Stewart

I know what some of you are saying: “Why isn’t this film number one on the list?!” Because as much as I love this film, it focuses some on romance but a lot more on family as a whole. It’s a terrific movie, well worth watching again and again, but not quite as good as the next two (in my opinion) for getting in the romantic mood.

2. Sleepless in Seattle (1993).

“A recently widowed man’s son calls a radio talk-show in an attempt to find his father a partner.”

Heroine holding teddy bear and and hero with son facing her, all on top of the Empire State Building roof

Meg Ryan & Tom Hanks

This enchanting film is about finding love in unexpected places. What always strikes me about this movie is that, despite it lasting an hour and 45 minutes, Ryan and Hanks only spend about two minutes together on screen. I like that choice, because the storyline shows how much personal growth these characters must do to be ready for a life together — a lesson worth considering ourselves.

1. While You Were Sleeping (1995).

“A hopeless romantic Chicago Transit Authority token collector is mistaken for the fiancée of a coma patient.”

Couple standing outside in front of Christmas tree

Bill Pullman & Sandra Bullock

Lonely Lucy has no one to spend the holidays with, until her crush on an injured businessman leads her to a family who welcomes her with open arms. However, the kind of man she thinks she wants isn’t who she really needs. (Welcome to how God often works, by the way.)  I appreciate how romance takes the lead, but family is always right there as well.

Perhaps you notice a few of your own favorites missing from my list. Confessions: I’ve never seen Home Alone or Elf, and I disliked A Christmas StoryLove Actually has some great storylines and others that are just, well, ick to me. Meanwhile, I really like Gremlins and Die Hard, but concluded that they’re not the best choices for boosting one’s holiday spirit or getting you in the mood. 

But feel free to come up with your own list. And don’t forget that there are puh-lenty of made-for-TV Christmas movies every year, all in the spirit of holiday cheer and romance, which you can find on Netflix or Hulu or wherever you watch.

Your turn: What did I leave off the list?

10 Intimate Things to Enjoy for Christmas

The Christmas season focuses on parties, decorating, shopping, cooking, and big-eyed children with wish lists as long as pythons. (Some children’s lists may include “python.” I’ve heard they make good pets.) The holidays can become a time of stress and even conflict between married couples. But we want to stay focused on keeping our love and intimacy strong.

So I racked my brain long and hard — or at least hard — and came up with some things you and your spouse can partake in together to bring you closer, emotionally or sexually, during this busy season. Here’s my list of 10 Intimate Things to Enjoy for Christmas.

Married Couple in Santa hats, kissing

10. Take a Christmas Lights Tour. Jump in the car with your spouse and take a tour through the neighborhood to look at lights. Or head to a local attraction – the port, the town square, the park – that has a light display. Talk about what you like as you view the lights and let the wonder of the season give you both a smile. Click HERE for a list of some Christmas lights attractions.

9. Hang Mistletoe…and Use It. Mistletoe has a history of being considered a fertility herb and an aphrodisiac. The tradition of kissing under mistletoe actually has its origins in mythology. These days, however, we recognize it as a cute plant that we hang up and smooch under for the sole reason that it’s fun. So string it up around your house! On the tops of door frames, in entryways, or over your bed, put up a little mistletoe and invite your spouse to join you.

8. Listen to Love Songs. There are so many romantic songs for the holidays. From I’ll Be Home for Christmas to All I Want for Christmas is You to Merry Christmas, Baby to Santa Baby, there is a lot of wonderful music you two can share over the holidays. A few other favorites of mine include A Christmas Love Song, Baby It’s Cold Outside, and I’ve Got My Love to Keep Me Warm. Make your own music collection and play some tunes as you snuggle by the fireplace in each other’s arms.

7. Visit a Nativity Scene. As you gaze upon the Christmas story represented by a baby, mother, father, and visitors, take a moment to think about the role of Joseph and Mary. Talk about a loving couple! If you read the accounts in Matthew and Luke, you see that both were unselfish and intent on honoring God. Can you imagine the loving relationship those attitudes produced in their marriage? I believe that on the night Jesus was born, Joseph and Mary did what other loving husbands and wives do when their firstborn arrives: They held each other, stared at their infant in awe, and felt closer for having brought a child into the world. (Then they went home and said, “What have we got ourselves into!” But that’s another story.)

White Christmas movie poster6. Watch Romantic Movies. Several romantic movies are set during the Christmas season. Here are a few titles to consider: Christmas in Connecticut (1945), The Shop Around the Corner (1940, the inspiration for You’ve Got Mail by the way), While You Were Sleeping (1995), White Christmas (1954), Holiday Inn (1942), and Miracle on 34th Street (1947, 1994). And for those who crave action and can look way past the language, there’s Die Hard (1988). (Okay, it isn’t technically romantic or Christmas-y, but those terrorists take over the office building on Christmas Eve and Bruce Willis wants to protect his wife.)

5. Wear Santa-themed Lingerie. If you’re game, you could play sexy Santa for each other. (Yes, I know that the real St. Nick was an actual saint, and I’m not trying to dis that image. But he didn’t wear red & white fur either.) You can find Santa lingerie at a lot of stores this time of year.

4. Add a Sexy Gift to Your Wish List. How about deciding that hubby and wife will buy each other one sexy gift this year? You can have your own private gift-opening on Christmas morning (or Christmas Eve for an early present). It can be anything from lingerie to massage oil to a sex toy. Or buy a book about intimacy to read together, or a game with sexy ideas (Married Dance and other Christian retailers offer romantic games). If you suggest the idea ahead of time, it will create some anticipation of what your sweetie purchased and how you can enjoy it together.

3. Wrap and Then Unwrap Your Bodies. There are plenty of places on your body where a bow can be strategically placed. You can simply opt for ribbon and bows, or wrap yourself up in a sheet and add a fabric ribbon with a bow on top. You could even buy one of those huge gift bags or a giant stocking and tuck yourself in. Add a message tag if you wish with a flirty line like “You’ve been so nice, it’s time to be naughty.” The fun part, of course, is the unwrapping.

O'Henry's The Gift of the Magi book cover2. Read The Gift of the Magi by O’Henry. I LOVE this short story about a couple who are strapped for money and want to get the best gifts for one another at Christmas. This is love at its best, least selfish, and most satisfying. You can read the full story HERE.

1. Make Love. Okay, this isn’t specifically a Christmas gift. It’s a wonderful gift anytime of year. But great sex in marriage comes with a giving attitude. Set aside a time for the two of you to be sexually intimate and try to outdo each other in providing your spouse pleasure. Merry Christmas, Baby!

What ideas do you have for making this holiday season a romantic or sexy one? How can you use activities or gifts to bring you closer at a time when busyness threatens to bring stress and conflict? Got any favorite holiday movies or songs? Chime in!

This post was first published in 2011 and has been updated.