The holidays are upon us and there is much to celebrate, much to be thankful for and much to do. There is also much about the holidays that is overrated or underrated. Following is my personal list of overrated and underrated for the season. As the old saying goes, your mileage may vary.

Overrated: Cranberry sauce. It it’s so good why don’t I eat it any other time of the year?

Underrated: Thanksgiving turkey. Apparently, it’s become fashionable to request an alternative to the bird. Thanksgiving sushi anyone?

Overrated: Black Friday sales. If you like waiting for hours, feeling like cattle in a pen and witnessing the possibility of violence at any given moment in order to save a few bucks then you may disagree with me on this one.

Underrated: Last-minute shopping

Overrated: Live Christmas specials. Carrie Underwood in Sound of Music? Meh.

Underrated: It’s a Wonderful Life. I first saw this when I was just a kid and it’s as important and wonderful a Christmas movie as there ever has been. I’ll also throw in Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer here because, apparently, I’m the only one in my household who appreciates the little guy.

Overrated: Pre-Thanksgiving Christmas decorating.

Underrated: Me not falling off the ladder hanging Christmas lights

Overrated: Christmas lists

Underrated: Taking the time to donate to or help out a charity

Overrated: The "hottest gift" this holiday season

Underrated: The classics. Women love jewelry. Some things never go out of style under the Christmas tree.

Overrated: Store-bought Christmas decorations. Want to spend $5,000 for a lawn ornament? Check out some of the national home improvement store websites sometime.

Underrated: Artificial trees. Knock them if you like, but I don’t have tree needles forming their own highway system from my garage to my living room. Plus, it took me 10 minutes to set up my pre-lit tree and hook it to an iPod to play music. I’ll take that any day of the week.

Overrated: Cyber Monday

Underrated: Local shopping. I’m not talking about your local Walmart, I’m talking about the local mom-and-pops or neighborhood businesses that we all desperately want but don’t do enough to support. There are plenty of cool, unique items at these places and I for one look forward to crossing off some of my shopping list items there.

Overrated: Christmas parties

Underrated: Christmas parades. There’s nothing like a parade, and Christmas seems like an especially good time to have one.

Overrated: Champagne

Underrated: Egg nog

There you have it. Enjoy the next five weeks of seasonal fun, and regardless of what is overrated or underrated in your life, savor the moments.