Dolly Parton loves Christmas — her series of carol covers over the years tell us so.
But the country legend, 74, has a unique, key date she takes down her decorations each year, recently revealing the habit on an episode of Cody Alan’s Cody Cast podcast.
During the episode, Parton said she waits more than three weeks after the holiday to take the ornaments off the tree for a very personal reason.
“I put up my Christmas decorations the day after Thanksgiving,” Parton explains.
“I celebrate Christmas and Thanksgiving until my birthday on the 19th of January. I always make them leave my decorations up ’till after my birthday, ’cause I am still celebrating.”
Parton will turn 75 on January 19th and it looks like she’ll celebrate by de-Christmasing her entire home.
However, when it comes to the feast, the southern belle maintains she does “all the traditional stuff, like everybody else.”
“The turkey and dressing. Sometimes we just bake big fat chickens instead of turkeys, but we do all the hams and the stuffing, the mashed potatoes, and the pumpkin and sweet-potato pies.”
There’s one key item that differs from most Christmas staple menus though, Parton says.
Each year, Parton makes her famous chicken and dumplings, following in her mother’s footsteps.
The singer explains, “my family loves that. Mama used to make dumplings at Christmas, so I still do that, in addition to all the other stuff.”
No Christmas seems fit without a Dolly Parton take on the season, and this year, the icon released both a Christmas album and Christmas special to celebrate.
Releasing her first full-length album in three decades, A Holly Dolly Christmas, Parton sang 12 songs, featuring six collaborations with Jimmy Fallon, Willie Nelson and both Billy Ray and Miley Cyrus (her goddaughter) and six original tracks.
In addition, an hourlong CBS entertainment special of the album aired earlier this month, where Parton gave fans a sneak peak at what she had in store.
“I think that music is a great connector, just is that universal language that everybody enjoys. Right now, during this time, it’s important to put as much love, as much light, and as much joy, as you can out there to the people,” she said in a teaser clip.
Parton, who has donated large sums to the plight of finding a vaccine for coronavirus, hopes her music will help people feel less alone during the festive period.
“We don’t get to go out to be with our families all across the country. Sing along with me and enjoy the stories that I’ve enjoyed telling for you in this special. What else you doin’?” she said.