Erin Mallory Long
November 27, 2014 8:00 am

The holiday season is quickly approaching. And by that I mean, Thanksgiving is here so it’s basically December and then all bets are off. Suddenly we’re going to be caroling and wearing ugly sweaters and eating a ton of delicious food and crying and getting into fights with our families because we don’t see them that much and the whole thing is stressful. And great. It’s 2014 and while I don’t exactly know how this holiday season is going to go, I do know what holiday seasons of the past were like. So let’s go back in time * gulp * 20 years, and take a look at what the holiday season of 1994 was like.

The Weather (For Some of Us)

I turned 10 in 1994, which is right at the tail end of only wanting toys for Christmas. (It’s so nice how kids are just simple to shop for like that.) But I also lived in Upstate NY and we experienced some of the effects of the Christmas 1994 Nor’Easter!

Now, we also had a big storm in 1993 which I only remember was different because I lived in a different house that year. I mean, I was in Upstate NY, we had lots of snow storms and I had lots of fluorescent winter gear to allow me to play in them.

But I do remember winter of 1994 because that is the year I tried to convince my brother I had amnesia. My brother is 5 years younger than I am and had gently pushed me off a giant snow mound we made in our backyard. I, in turn, pretended I had been knocked out and couldn’t remember who anyone was. He did not enjoy this, and I would not recommend it as it still haunts me to this day.

What We Listened To

The answer, in short, is: Mariah Carey.

Prayer hands emoji (I reject it being a high five) because 1994 was when we got the most important album of our holiday seasons: Mariah Carey Merry Christmas. It came out in early November when I was in 5th grade and it was immediately the thing we most desired in the world.

I don’t even have to look up the album artwork; I have it burned in my brain. I’m desperate to do a recreation of it for a Christmas card but my initials aren’t MC. The video is phenomenal and no song puts me more in the holiday spirit than “All I Want For Christmas Is You.”

(This all was particularly important to us as pre-teens in Schenectady, NY as Mariah had performed a concert in 1993 at Proctors Theatre in Schenectady and later used the footage of her performance from “Hero” there as the song’s music video. So we were all prettttty into Mariah.)

What We Were Watching

Besides of course, Seinfeld, ER and Friends, we had a lot of movies come out the holiday season of 1994.

Miracle on 34th Street starring Mara Wilson came out in November of 1994 so I know that was on my mind heading into the holiday season.

Topically enough for 2014, Dumb & Dumber was released December 16, 1994. I honestly don’t know when I actually saw that movie but I do remember, at 10 years old, thinking, “I’m too old for this.”

What I WAS excited about, however, was Little Women, which came out December 23, 1994. I distinctly remember seeing it in theaters over winter break and sobbing uncontrollably while also wanting to be a combination of Kirsten Dunst and Winona Ryder.

And, if you were me, you were still watching Home Alone every Christmas from that one Christmas when you recorded it off the TV at your grandparents’ house.

What We Asked Santa For

Apparently, Power Rangers toys.

Overall, the big toy of the year was Power Rangers toys. Pretty fun. I don’t think until we reached “Tickle Me Elmo” in 1996 did I personally experience a specific toy that was all the rage.  And by that point I had no interest in it. I didn’t personally ask for or receive a Power Rangers toy in 1994 but I DID spend my allowance that year on the first CD I bought myself which was Boyz II Men II.

And from December 3, 1994 – January 13, 1995, “On Bended Knee” by Boyz II Men was the Billboard #1 song so we were all listening to that too. In between plays of Mariah.

What else do you remember from 1994’s holiday season? Let me know!

(Main image Dumb & Dumber pic , Power Rangers pic via)

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