Tuesday, December 2, 2014


As I write this blog I find myself having to wear the plastic retainers for my teeth while I’m at work. You see, I have a dentist’s appointment later and I’m supposed to wear the retainers at night, but, oh gosh, I’m so delinquent in doing this. As I don’t want to risk having my dentist scold me for not wearing the retainers at night, I’m hoping my quick-fix daytime “retaining” will do some damage control.

However, these plastic coverings make me lisp when I speak. I guess that’s probably the reason I was reminded of a song we used to sing when I was a little girl. But maybe the reminder has come today because Christmas is only seven weeks away (of course, by the time this blog posts, it will be little more than three weeks to that special day).

The song my siblings and I used to sing was the popular, All I Want for Christmas is My Two Front Teeth. We sang it as follows:

All I want for Christmas is my two front teeth
My two front teeth
My two front teeth
All I want for Christmas is my two front teeth
So I can wish you, "Merry Christmas"

Reminded of this tune, I Googled the song, only to discover there’s a history behind its writing. And there are verses, too! Seems we only sang the chorus (almost correctly). It’s so cute, I had to share the entire song with you.

Everybody stops and stares at me
These two teeth are gone as you can see
I don't know just who to blame for this castastrophe
But my one wish on Christmas Eve is as plain as can be

All I want for Christmas is my two front teeth
My two front teeth
See my two front teeth
Gee, if I could only have my two front teeth
Then I could wish you, "Merry Christmas"

It seems so long since I could say
"Sister, Susie sitting on a thistle!"
Gosh, oh gee, how happy I'd be, if I could only whistle

And then the songwriter dives into the chorus again.

This novelty Christmas song was written seventy years ago, way back in 1944, by Donald Yetter Gardner. He died a decade ago (2004). Mr Gardner, while teaching his second grade class music in Smithtown, New York, asked his students what they wanted for Christmas. Lisping as they answered, he noticed that almost all of them had at least one front tooth missing. Within thirty minutes, Gardner had written All I Want for Christmas is My Two Front Teeth.

Four years later, after an employee of Witmark music company heard the then thirty-four-year-old teacher singing it at a music teachers’ conference, the song was published, even though it was recorded the previous year (1947) by Spike Jones & His City Slickers. It hit the top of the pop charts in 1948 and 1949, and has been recorded by numerous other singers and performers—Nat King Cole, The Chipmunks, The Three Stooges, Danny Kay with The Andrew Sisters, Ray Stevens, and The Platters to mention but a few.

This year I get to spend a Christmas unlike I’ve ever had before. A white Christmas…something we know nothing of down here in South Africa where the sun shines bright during Christmas time. I’ll be in Finland with my husband visiting my son and his wife, and her family. During our time there, we’ll be travelling up to the most northern province of Finland and the home of Santa Claus—Lapland. As you can imagine, not only are my bags almost packed in anticipation, but my Christmas list is written and waiting to be placed with my travel documents, ready for hand delivery to Santa in Rovaniemi.

What’s that? You want to know what’s on my list? Okay. My Christmas wish list is:
  • Definitely a pair of Finnish Reino slippers. Aren’t these Tartan slippers simply cool? Apparently they're the rage and highly fashionable.
  • To see the aurora borealis (or put simply, the northern lights)
Image by www.dyet.com (www.freeimages.com)
  • To sunbathe in the snow on a frozen lake
  •  To visit Moomin World
  • To come up with an awesome Christmas story for my publisher’s 2015 Christmas Extravaganza series while I’m in Lapland. Here are just a few of the great 2014 Christmas stories that will be available this December from Pelican Book Group.

So, readers and writers of the world, what would you write on that letter to Santa? What do you want for Christmas?

If you post your Christmas wish lists in a comment here, I’d be happy to hand deliver them to the big man in red when I'm up in Lapland in December. Or you could just send a prayer to heaven to the One who makes all our dreams come true.

I must confess, I don't really have a Dear Santa letter written and packed. I only have my hopes and prayers, But those slippers are definitely on a Finnish list...my holiday shopping one!

And now for my final words on ICFW for 2014—as Santa would say...

Hyvää joulua ja onnellista uutta vuotta! 

Why not add a “Merry Christmas and Happy New Year” greeting in your own language to your Christmas Wish List in the comments below?

Permission to use images obtained.

MARION UECKERMANN's passion for writing was sparked in 2001 when she moved to Ireland with her husband and two sons. Since then she has published devotional articles and stories in Winners, The One Year Devotional of Joy and Laughter (Tyndale House Publishers), and Chicken Soup for the Soul: Miraculous Messages from Heaven, and her debut novelette, Helsinki Sunrise (White Rose Publishing, a Pelican Book Group imprint, Passport to Romance series). Her second Passport to Romance novelette, Oslo Overtures, will be published in 2015.

Marion blogs for International Christian Fiction Writers and Beauty for Ashes. She belongs to Christian Writers of South Africa and American Christian Fiction Writers. She lives in Pretoria East, South Africa in an empty nest with her husband and their crazy black Scottie, Wally.

Connect with Marion Ueckermann:
Blogs: A Pebble in my Pocket / Foreign Affaire

Helsinki Sunrise is available to purchase from Pelican Book Group, Amazon, Christianbook.com, and Barnes and Noble.

Watch the Helsinki Sunrise book trailer on YouTube.
Watch the Passport to Romance book trailer on YouTube


  1. Ah, Marion, all I want for Christmas is a promise to see you and Shirl in Dallas for ACFW in September 2015

    1. Oh wouldn't that be cool. So now I'm on your Santa's wish list as well as your prayer list! I know which one I have most faith in. :-) Either way, it's going to take a LOT of faith!

  2. Judith, wouldn't that be awesome! Well, at least Santa's putting one South African under your tree :)

  3. Marion, I've the greatest admiration for your prolific writing skills. Well done for another superb blog.
    All I want for Christmas - well I've been so busy planning gifts for all family and friends, that I haven't thought of anything that I want. So here's to Health, Happiness and a lovely turkey dinner!

    1. Ann, wishing you a wonderful Christmas. May all your wishes come true. One other wish for me...to see you again at Beauty for Ashes in May.

      I sure do hope the Finns eat turkey. I'll sure miss that bird this year if they don't, but nevertheless, am really inquisitive as to what new traditions we will learn this year.

  4. God Jul is Merry Christmas in Swedish. Such a fun post! :) I'll miss the snow this year...in Thailand!

    1. Sara...Thailand... Sounds exciting! Enjoy your fun in the sun. And thanks for the Swedish lesson. It might just come in handy seeing as Swedish is the other language spoken in Finland.

  5. That is so exciting! I've seen the Northern Lights only once, and it was magical. And the Moonin Village?! That's amazing! The Moonin books are amusing... My Christmas wish is a house. We are still homeless. Tell Santa I'd like a house.

    1. Jenn, I will definitely tell him. Double story? What color? How many bedrooms? It's good to be specific :)

  6. Marion, enjoy your white Christmas and visit to Lapland :) I'd love to see the northern lights. I unfortunately live too far north to see the aurora australis (southern lights).

    Jenn, I'm sorry to hear you're still house hunting. I'm praying you'll move into the perfect house asap.

    1. Thanks, Narelle. Daughter-in-law's looking for place for us to stay in Lapland ... apparently quite difficult as it's high season (in that cold??), but then what other time of the year would you want to visit Santa's village? Cannot wait to see what story emerges in my head once I'm there.

    2. Thanks for a fun and entertaining post, Marion. And oh wow, your holiday sounds awesome. You have to write a daily blog on your site while you're there, you just have to! Gesëende Kersfees from South Africa!

  7. Shirl, I hadn't thought to do a daily blog, but it sounds like a great idea. I'll have to see if I can do it and keep up with it :)