25 days of holiday fun on television

A day-by-day guide to what to watch to get in the holiday spirit this season.
A day-by-day guide to what to watch to get in the holiday spirit this season. Getty Images/iStockphoto

Nothing gets you in the holiday spirit quite like snuggling up with your kids and watching a good movie or holiday special on tv. Grab a bowl of popcorn and a blanket and get is a day-by-day guide to what to watch and where to find it for every day of December, now through Christmas.

Dec. 1

“Polar Express” (7 p.m., ABC Family): Tom Hanks voices the role of conductor aboard a magical train bound for the North Pole.

“Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer” (8 p.m., CBS): Burl Ives tells the story of the shy reindeer who rises to the occasion.

“Building off the Grid: North Pole” (10 p.m., DIY): North Pole, Alaska, mayor Bryce Ward and his team handcraft a remote family cabin in the wilderness.

Dec. 2

“Christmas in Rockefeller Center” (8 p.m., NBC): Music and the lighting tree.

“Santa Clause” (8:45 p.m., ABC Family): Tim Allen as a divorced dad turned into Santa.

“How the Grinch Stole Christmas” (9 p.m., NBC): Classic animated version with Boris Karloff.

“Christmas Through the Decades” (10 p.m., History): Features Jillian Michaels, Leann Rimes, Kenny Rogers and Dascha Polanco as they look at Christmas in the ’70s, the time of Pet Rocks.

Dec. 3

“Fred Claus” (8:15 p.m., ABC Family): Santa’s brother must step up to save the holiday.

“Shrek the Halls” (8:30 p.m., ABC): Friends try to un-grump the ogre.

“CMA Country Christmas” (9 p.m., ABC): Hosted by Jennifer Nettles with performances by Kelsea Ballerini, Dan + Shay, Mickey Guyton, Jewel, Charles Kelley, Martina McBride, David Nail, Nettles, Pentatonix, LeAnn Rimes, Darius Rucker, Brian Setzer, Michael W. Smith and Lindsey Stirling.

Dec. 4

“A Very Murray Christmas,” (Netflix debut): Bill Murray frets no one will show up for his program because of snow. With George Clooney, Paul Shaffer, Amy Poehler, Michael Cera, Chris Rock, Maya Rudolph, Jason Schwartzman and Rashida Jones.

“Elf” (9:30 p.m., ABC Family): Will Ferrell as an elf loose in New York.

Dec. 5

“Just in Time for Christmas” (8 p.m., Hallmark): Magic of a glimpse of Christmas future shows woman which career course to take, with Eloise Mumford, Michael Stahl-David, Christopher Lloyd and William Shatner.

“How the Grinch Stole Christmas” (9:30 p.m., ABC Family): Jim Carey’s live-action version of the Dr. Seuss story.

Dec. 6

“Karen Kingsbury’s The Bridge” (8 p.m., Hallmark): Two students find the future at a cozy coffee shop.

Dec. 8

“Pinocchio’s Christmas” (3 p.m., ABC Family): Pinocchio is conned out of money for Geppetto’s gift.

Dec. 9

“All-Star Holidays” (10 p.m., Food): Tips and recipes from Giada De Laurentiis, Ree Drummond, Guy Fieri, Bobby Flay, Nancy Fuller and Ina Garten.

“Christmas Through the Decades” (10 p.m., History): A look at the Christmas fads of the ’80s, including the Walkman and Cabbage Patch Kids.

Dec. 11

“Hollywood Christmas Parade” (8 p.m., CW): Buzz Aldrin is grand marshal.

“I’m Not Ready for Christmas” (10 p.m., Hallmark): A niece sets her aunt straight about lying with a Christmas wish.

Dec. 12

“It’s a Wonderful Life” (8 p.m., NBC): Jimmy Stewart and Donna Reed in story of magical redemption.

“Flight Before Christmas” (9 p.m., CBS): Niko must save his reindeer father and Christmas from the evil Black Wolf.

Dec. 13

“White House Christmas 2015” (6 p.m., HGTV): Genevieve Gorder hosts decorating show about the executive mansion.

Dec. 14

“Santa Clause 3: Escape Clause” (8:45 p.m., ABC Family): Jack Frost tries to seize the holiday.

“Tiny House Hunters” (10 p.m., HGTV): Decorating tiny spaces.

Dec. 16

“Christmas Through the Decades” (10 p.m., History): Christmas fads of the ’90s, including Tickle Me Elmo and Beanie Babies.

Dec. 17

“Elf: Buddy’s Musical Christmas” (8 p.m., NBC): Jim Parsons voices the animated role of Buddy, who goes to New York to meet the father he never knew he had.

“Disney’s Christmas Carol” (8:45 p.m., ABC Family): Mickey Mouse leads the cast in the Dickens classic.

“Prep & Landing” (6:30 p.m., ABC Family): Elves prepare homes for Santa.

“Prep & Landing: Naughty vs. Night” (7 p.m., ABC Family): Someone tries to put everyone on the naughty list.

“Blake Shelton’s Not So Family Christmas” (10 p.m., NBC): Blake Shelton hosts a variety special with Christina Aguilera, Kelly Clarkson, Miranda Lambert, Larry the Cable Guy, Jay Leno and Reba McEntire.

Dec. 18

“Yes Virginia” (8:30 p.m., ABC): Virginia O’Hanlon learns about Santa by writing a letter to the editor.

Dec. 19

“I Want a Dog for Christmas, Charlie Brown” (8 p.m., ABC): Snoopy gets Linus’ brother to invite Spike for a visit.

“Melody & Mistletoe” (8 p.m., Hallmark): Mariah Carey as a music teacher who helps a new girl write a song for the Christmas show.

Dec. 21

“The Great Christmas Light Fight” (10 p.m., ABC): Neighbors try to outdecorate each other.

Dec. 23

“I Love Lucy Christmas Special” (8 p.m., CBS): Back-to-back colorized classic shows, “The Christmas Episode” and “Lucy Does a TV Commercial” (also known as “Vitameatavegamin”).

“How Murray Saved Christmas” (9 p.m., NBC): Jewish deli owner has to save the Christian holiday.

Dec. 24

“A Christmas Story” (8 p.m., TBS): Start of a 24-hour marathon of Ralphie and the Red Ryder BB gun story.

“Mr. Magoo’s Christmas Carol” (8 p.m., CW): Magoo as Scrooge.

Dec. 25

“Nightmare Before Christmas” (12:30 p.m., ABC Family): Tim Burton’s bizarre holiday-mixing tale.

“The Andy Griffith Show Christmas Special” (8 p.m., CBS): Two classic episodes are colorized.