When Brad Paisley was just a 12-year-old boy, he penned his first song, 'Born on Christmas Day.' Twenty-six years have passed since then, but not much has changed for him (other than, you know, the arrival of country stardom): He's still writing, and he's still compelled by the spirit of Christmas.

This year, he'll be spending the holiday with his loved ones in Tennessee -- a perfect plan, since family is at the root of all his favorite Christmas memories.

"The guitar my papaw [maternal grandfather] gave me for Christmas when I was eight, it changed my life," Paisley tells Taste of Country.

The country crooner adds that he truly enjoys "lighting fires in the fireplace with all of my family and friends near" during the holiday season, as well as the "timeless melody" of the traditional tune 'Silent Night,' which he included on his 2006 Christmas album, 'Brad Paisley Christmas.'

The good husband that he is, he's keeping his gift plans for wife Kimberly under wraps.

What's Paisley really looking forward to come Christmas day this year, though? "Playing with all of the new toys my boys will get," he admits.