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We normally end our “Christmas Music Extravaganza” the day after Christmas, but we decided to have one more day and after listening, we think you’ll know why.

At the time of the video below, Kaylee Rogers was 10 years old and attending the Killard House School in Donaghadee, County Down in northern Ireland.

According to the school’s website:

Killard House School is a co-educational Controlled School providing for children and young people with additional special educational needs. These include Moderate Learning Difficulties, Autistic Spectrum Disorder and associated Emotional barriers.

According to several sources, Kaylee has a mild form of autism.

Colin Millar, head teacher at Killard House, said: “For a child who came in P4 and would really talk, couldn’t really read out in class, to stand and perform in front of an audience is amazing.

“It takes a lot of effort on Kaylee’s part.”

The performance here is good not because of any “special needs,” but rather it is great because of Kaylee Rogers. It is difficult to believe how great this child’s voice is. Simply mind blowing.

The lyrics for this version of the song were written by the group Cloverton

(much, much more below the fold.)

Merry Christmas!

We hope that you are having a wonderful and blessed Christmas surrounded by friends and family and those you love.

Our first year of being online, we posted Linus’ speech from “Merry Christmas Charlie Brown” as it tells the meaning of Christmas and brings back so many fond memories. What we didn’t realize is that for years our friend William Teach over at the Pirate’s Cove had been doing the same thing – long before we thought of it. (Great minds think alike, we guess.)

Luckily for us, Teach even took the time to upload the video to YouTube and so we thank him for that.

Merry Christmas from all the writers, staff and contributors here at Raised on Hoecakes.

Luke chapter 2:

In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world. 2 (This was the first census that took place while[a] Quirinius was governor of Syria.) 3 And everyone went to their own town to register.

4 So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David. 5 He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child. 6 While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, 7 and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no guest room available for them.

Silent Night – John Denver And The Muppets.

This year, as is our tradition every year, we end our Christmas musical celebration with John Denver and the Muppets singing “Silent Night.”

Years ago we watched the Christmas special called “John Denver and the Muppets: A Christmas Together.” One of our favorite parts was the singing of “Silent Night.” At the time, were weren’t familiar with the story behind the writing of song. John Denver explaining the origins of the song is a nice touch. (We have since found out that the reason the organ in the church was not working was that mice had chewed through the bellows.)

So while it sounds funny, this is our favorite version of “Silent Night.” Not only did we learn something, but it is easy to sing with and not feel out of place. After all, unlike singing with recordings of wonderful choirs, no one is ever going to accuse Fozzie Bear, Miss Piggy, Waldorf and Stadler or any of the Muppets as having great voices, but yet it works.

This is the album version:

And the version as it appeared on the Christmas Special “John Denver and the Muppets: A Christmas Together.”

To all our friends, to all those who don’t like us, to those at home, to those away, to those surrounded with loved ones, to those who are alone, we wish you a Merry Christmas.

Sleep, in heavenly peace.

Tracking Santa.

For the 63 year, NORAD will be tracking Santa and his sleigh as he makes his rounds traveling around the world.

You can visit the site here if you wish. It is a lot of silly fun but we all can use a lot more of that.

In case you are wondering, the site won’t he affected by the government shutdown.

The story of the origins of the tracking is pretty interesting as well.

Every year, in a tradition that dates back to the Cold War, volunteers field tens of thousands of calls and emails from around the world, according to the North American Aerospace Defense Command. Children ask for Santa’s location, discuss their Christmas lists and probe volunteers for other details.

There’s even a handbook for handling different kinds of requests, Politico reports.

Those volunteers, who take two-hour shifts starting in the early morning on Dec. 24, wouldn’t be there if not for a typo in a local newspaper in 1955.

When Col. Harry Shoup picked up his secret hotline at Peterson Air Force in Colorado, he was expecting a call from a four-star general at the Pentagon, according to a 2014 StoryCorps interview with his children.

“And then there was a small voice that just asked, ‘Is this Santa Claus?’ ” his daughter, Pam Farrell says.

“Christmas Is Coming” – The Muppets.

Not the best video quality, but still fun and entertaining and something that you can sing along with or do with your family.

Third Day – O Come All Ye Faithful.

From the CCM group Third Day. It’s a good ‘un.

Little Drummer Boy – Whiteheart.

Back in the 1980’s and 1990’s there was no better contemporary Christian rock band than Whiteheart. Okay, there may be some better as how good a group is somewhat of a subjective thing, but certainly Whiteheart was in the top 5.

This is from the same album we featured the song “Angels We Have Heard on High” yesterday from 1988 and was re-released on a “best of” album called Souvenirs from 1990.

This version of “The Little Drummer Boy” just rocks.


Trans-Siberian Orchestra – Christmas Eve/ Sarajevo (Bonus: Two Songs Played On The Floppotron!)

For our “regular” “Christmas Music Extravaganza” we want to feature the Trans-Siberian Orchestra playing “Christmas Eve / Sarajevo.)

In a slightly more bizarre or “different” vein is two Christmas songs “played” on the “Floppotron.”

The Floppotron is a instrument made of various computer devices such as hard drives, scanners, printers and floppy drives. By adjusting certain characteristics of each device, tones are produced which are then made into a song. In this case, we are looking at “Carol of the Bells” and “Jingle Bells.” (Kind of a “bells” theme you could say.)

Angels We Have Heard On High – Various Artists.

This is from a 1988 album of Christian artists including Michael Card, Geoff Goore & The Distance, Deniece Williams, BeBe & CeCe Winans, Margaret Becker, Steve Camp, Steve Taylor, Steven Curtis Chapman, Tim Miner, and White Heart. We happen to really like this version of this classic Christmas carol.

There is something joyful and powerful about it that makes us smile and (heaven forbid) sing along.

The USAF Band Holiday Flash Mob At The National Air and Space Museum 2013.

We still love flash mobs like this.

A round of applause for the “zoomies.”

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