Friday, December 16, 2011

10 Ways We're Putting Festive Into Our Holiday

AROMA:  I'm sure I'm not the only one who needs to replenish their holiday Yankee candle stash, stat.  Or, if you're into filling your home with natural scents, you could DIY with these brilliant plan-ahead stove-top scents made from fruit, herbs and spices.

AMBIANCE:  Christmas tree lights + fresh tree + roaring fire + family + friends + potential snow on the couldn't feel any more holiday.

EXPERIENCE:  I don't know what could put us in the Christmas spirit more than this special stop.  There are over a million lights, carolers, a petting zoo, hot cocoa/coffee stands and concerts inside the church.  I sang here through junior high and high school and the acoustics of the granite floors of the cathedral are phenomenal.  Ain't gonna lie--last night while on my late night medicine run for my girl, I sang Carol of the Bells with the most drama my lungs could handle, and then I quit, because I was embarrassing myself. 
WATCH:  I've loved this movie since college.  When we honeymooned in NYC, I was bent on going here to have a moment over frozen hot chocolate.  Sadly we found the restaurant to be closed after we had finished our cold yet romantic carriage ride around Central Park, and I was bummed.  One day Husband and I will have a romantic NYC holiday moment over Serendipity's frozen hot chocolate. Until then, here's a recipe for frozen hot chocolate.
READ: The holiday and reading go together like a wink and a smile.  I've heard wonderful things about this book.  I just saw that its become a movie and is in theaters now.  But we readers know better than to see the movie before reading the book, right?  I couldn't even bring myself to watch Water for Elephants after hearing the reviews.  I didn't want the experience to be tainted, ya know?  I was practically devastated watching Angela's Ashes many years ago, and we all know that Twilight in the theater didn't stand a chance against the book.  There's more where that came from.

DO:  Puzzles.  My Mama loves a good puzzle challenge, and I remember her doing most of them around Christmas.  Isn't this one neat?  It's made from the map of your city!  How fun would it be to put together the roads that you know.  Plus, it could make some cool wall art!
LISTEN:  I grew up partial to country and folk music, so naturally, Jewel's Holiday Collection is a favorite of mine.  Sarah Mclachlan's, Wintersong has been entrancing me as well--hence the music added to the blog.  I've had my eye on this one, and I should just make the purchase already.  She's so darn cute, isn't she?

MAKE & EAT: family holiday recipes.  When I think of Christmas, I think of more recent years when I'd come home from college on break, usually hit with a cold in no time due to the stress of finals, and my agenda of eat, sleep and Christmas parties with my friends.  Oh, how I miss the days of a leisure Christmas!  Mom baking all sorts of goodies, the can of Almond Roca that magically appeared every year, the ingredients of wassail marrying together on the stove, the delectable meals and fancy table decor--and I just basically showed up.  Now, it's me who has to plan, shop, prep, cook, present, and clean, and it'll never be like the old days, unless of course, the in-laws want to host this year and I'm game.  Not that I'd just lop out on the couch and not help, because I've been raised better than that, but hosting the full meal-deal is a lot of work, and I'm worn out just thinking about it.  I've got nine days to figure it out...or we may just be eating top ramen and drinking hot cocoa.  If all goes well, I'm hoping for a meal involving a main course like this:


Stay tuned: If I'm on it, I'll be whipping up some of favorite holiday recipes in the next few days to share.
Bon Bons anyone?
DRINK:  Wassail, holiday infused liquor, a gingerbread martini, frozen hot chocolate, an Eggnog Spritzer...basically, cheer in a cup! Here's a list of 29 holiday cocktails that will make you want to sing carols.

WEAR: It has been a long-held traditional in my family to open pajamas on Christmas Eve.  I haven't hardly thought about them until now, which scares me.  What scares me more, is that we've been planning to do handmade gifts, so I wonder if I can make pajama bottoms in a hurry?  Aren't these cute?  Makes me never want to buy store pajamas again.

These little girl bottoms are sweet, too.  After seeing these, a store purchase would be hard to make.

For the day of the festivities, I enjoy getting a wee spruced up. 

Ensemble = Yes, please!
Down to the pretty pale pink polish.

There.  I'm feeling more festive already.

What do YOU do to make your holiday festive?

Click on the button to read more from the party goers!



It's me December 16, 2011 at 10:48 AM  

I am doing notyhing work one week and than it is christmas evening......maybe i am backing cookies next week...we are going out to friends having diner first day and second day we are with the two of us and our doggies....and than we have a week vacation !!...o yes !!....and old years eve we have friends to love from

Libbie December 16, 2011 at 11:25 AM  

Cassie you are magical! I didn't even think if adding the aroma! Oh what that adds!!! I need to get a good candle today!!! All your ideas made me feel so cozy & Christmassy! I just loved this post Cassie! Made me smile!!!

Alyssa December 16, 2011 at 11:48 AM  

Smell is everything!!! It's amazing how certain smells remind you of things!

Martina December 16, 2011 at 12:59 PM  

Wow, i feel festive after reading your post! Have a magical weekend ful of christmas sparkles and joy!

Cassie December 16, 2011 at 1:53 PM  

Libbie & Alyssa--while I'm out today I am definitely getting a candle and it'll probably be lit till the end of the month and then some. I LOVE this time of year!

Martina- a magical weekend to you!


The Perfect Pear December 16, 2011 at 8:06 PM  

I LOVE EVERYTHING ABOUT THIS POST! you've just totally made my day, I want to do all of these things! :) happy holdays!

Anonymous December 18, 2011 at 5:58 AM  

I absolutely LOVE the last.....
I love getting all "dolled up" is what I call it!
The jewelry in that photo is fantastic!!!
I look forward to reading more posts from you:) it warmed my little heart!
I will now subscribe & follow!!!
Please stop by for a visit.


“You must write every single day of your life... You must lurk in libraries and climb the stacks like ladders to sniff books like perfumes and wear books like hats upon your crazy heads... may you be in love every day for the next 20,000 days. And out of that love, remake a world.” ― Ray Bradbury
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