I am a big fan of the classic Christmas movies.

It’s a Wonderful Life, Mickey’s Christmas Carol, How the Grinch Stole Christmas, Rudolph, Charlie Brown and many others harbor the beginning of wonderful memories for my wife and I.

As with most Christmas movie purists, I immediately look down upon newer attempts to capture spirit of this time of year like one would look down upon Handel’s Messiah being put to polka music.

However, Elf has broken through to the realms of tradition and has taken its place as a classic holiday movie.

It’s not about how funny the story is or how the family becomes a family because of Buddy’s presence.  Although those things help the story, for me it’s the whimsy and wonder Buddy shows for all things new.

Blissfully ignorant of or directly because of the cynicism of the big-city dwellers, Buddy met Christmas trees, taxi cabs, the worlds best cup of coffee, revolving doors and tall buildings with the same wonder and innocent excitement that helped Jovie fall for him.

And as we celebrate the closing of one chapter and the beginning of a brand new one, I am challenged by the way Buddy met each day.  Challenged to live a life that free of the fear of mans opinions, to stand in wonder of the wonderful things that surround us each day, challenged to fill our waking moments with the magic and whimsy we often allow only in our dreams.  Because that is living life and that is my new years resolution.