McCallie is an All-Boys Private Boarding School and Day School, a Christian-based College Prep School. 
McCallie seeks out and accepts boys from all ethnic, racial, religious, and socioeconomic backgrounds and places a high value on a diverse student body.

Christmas Mornings

Assistant Head of School Kenny Sholl

Men of McCallie,

The traditional AWTTW for this season of the year!

Christmas Mornings, Memories, and Dropping the Blanket

One of my favorite things about the Christmas Season are the TV specials and movies. I record most of them and watch them throughout the weeks leading up to Christmas Day. It is something I look forward to every year. I now share some of my “greatest hits”, a childhood memory of Christmas, and The Christmas Story. All are about Christmas Mornings…..!  Note: The video links are provided to include the rendition of “Christmas Morning”!


As Mr. Burns mentioned in his recent Chapel talk, I am sure that most of you have seen the movie A Christmas Story. It is the one that is on TV for 24 straight hours during Christmas Day and is about Ralph’s quest to get a Red Ryder BB gun for Christmas.  


This is my favorite version of the Christmas Carol starring George C. Scott.  Scrooge awakens after a long night of dealing with the three spirits to find that he hasn’t missed Christmas Day.


This one just made my greatest hits list. The graphics are awesome and the movie “explains” how Santa pulls off gift-giving around the world in one evening.  It has a great storyline as well.



When I was a young boy, still somewhat unaware of time, I knew that Christmas was near as we began to sing Christmas carols in church and when my Granny Grunt and Pap pulled up in their archaic Plymouth coupe. Of course they had their dog, Buttons, and mynah bird, Pete, with them as well. As I threw open the door of that ancient car, the musty smell of old upholstery was fanned by the tornadic action of the dog and the wings-a-flapping bird. Even my Pap’s profane attempts to calm the pets couldn’t dampen my excitement. I knew that the Christmas tree, once-a-year treats, and presents were soon to come. One package, shaped like a perfect cube, has caught my attention.  Could this box hold the official leather NBA basketball that I asked for? On Christmas Eve, with everyone at the other end of the house, I manage to unwrap the gift without tearing the paper or compromising the scotch tape. It is the basketball!! Obviously, I can’t dribble it in the house. So I begin to do my famous ball know the spinning ball on the index finger move.  Unfortunately, I arouse Old Pete, the mynah bird, who is obviously unimpressed with my ball skills and begins to cackle in a sarcastic manner that sounds a bit like laughter. In fact, this bird had developed quite a vocabulary of four-letter words that he learned from my grandfather. I quickly re-wrap the package, attempt to quiet Old Pete, and resolve to wait until Christmas morning to open my gifts!

THE CHRISTMAS STORY (LUKE 2:1-35): Linus: The True Meaning of Christmas

It is easy with the rush of Christmas obligations and the need to meet high expectations to lose sight of the peace, hope, and courage that the birth of our Saviour gives us each and every day….if we will just claim it. If you click on the link for the YouTube video above, take note of what happens at 1:37 as Linus quotes from Luke 2…..”Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. 11 For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.” ….Linus drops his security blanket for the only time in his life as a Peanuts character!   

Dear McCallie Community, I wish for you peace, joy, hope, and courage on this Christmas morning. May we all “drop our blankets” in the New Year.

Merry Christmas, Gentlemen.

Dean Sholl

PS:  As I sang in Chapel a few weeks ago…"Christmas morning, Christmas morning, Christmas morning...What a glorious sight!