Wednesday, November 21, 2012

My Holiday Favorites, And Holiday Sponsors Faves!

Today, I am feeling extra Christmas-y, and extra thankful. Thankful for my husband, our health, our families, my business and all of the friends and blessings that we take for granted every day.

I am also thankful for this creative outlet that has become a home where I can journal about the daily happenings in our life. The funny things, the struggles and the celebrations. This little place that has grown and changed since it started back in December of 2008. 

There is something about this time of year that changes my mood instantly. I get giddy thinking of decorating my tree, baking Christmas cookies and shopping for the perfect gifts for my loved ones. This year, we're starting a brand new tradition for Christmas. We normally head to my parents house in NJ, but this year, they're coming to us! We'll be celebrating Christmas, albeit a little early but nonetheless, in our own home surrounded by most of my immediate family.

I am excited to share our new home with them. To decorate and actually have guests come to enjoy the festive spirit, and to cook my very first big holiday meal in my kitchen. While it's hard to narrow down my favorite things about the holiday season (hello, the Jets are playing on Thanksgiving night this year!), I think the above mentioned do a pretty good job of scratching the surface.

There are some other special ladies that have become a part of this little home on the internet, and I thought what better way to share some more about them than to ask them what some of their favorite things about the holidays are as well! 

So, I am thrilled to share a little bit more about each of my holiday sponsors, in no particular order, of course ...


Kelly from Today Was A Fairytale says her favorite things consist of ...  
  •  I absolutely love all the family traditions that come along with the holidays and can’t wait until I can pass those on to my kids.
  • To me the holidays are all about spending time with family and I love getting a bunch of people together to play games and watch movies.
  • While some people love Summer, I am an absolute Fall/Winter junkie! I love the cold weather and getting to bundle up in jeans, jackets and boots. 

Mandy from Mommy Musings is one of my favorite blogging Momma's, and she shares a little bit about her favorites as well! 
My favorite things about the holidays are:
  • Football on Thanksgiving
  • Exchanging gifts with Skip on Christmas Eve
  • The look on my girls faces Christmas morning!


Tina and I were definitely meant to be friends. Both JMU alum living in Maryland; it was bound to be an instant connection! 

Remember that huge giveaway that I participated in with Tina? Well, she's back today to share some of her favorite things about the holidays, too ...

My 3 favorite things about the holiday (in no particular order!): 
  •  Christmas music (all of it, any song, any artist, I love it all!)  
  • Watching Little Women with my sister and my mom after baking a huge batch of Christmas cookies  
  • Charlie Brown.... anything Peanuts and Vince Guaraldi related (but I suppose that sort of fits under #1, doesn't it)



Britt from Not So Newlyweds shares her heart and some of her favorite things about the holidays! We share the exact same sentiment about family traditions ...

I love the holidays! I love being around friends and family. I love the feeling of a beautifully decorated home. I love people who get into the holiday spirit. I love the Christmas music on the radio. But most of all I love the little traditions we have as a family.

J and I do not have any children yet, so we don't have big traditions. We often discuss what new traditions we want to start when we have kids and get excited to think about our future. But for now, we enjoy our own traditions we have started as a couple and enjoying doing together.

Breakfast with sister

Okay, I should first tell you that my mom is not a cook. This will be explained more on my blog on Monday, so check it out. Every year my mom has our Thanksgiving catered, at least the main parts {turkey, stuffing, pies}. She orders the meal and the day before Thanksgiving my sister and I pick it up. About six years ago, when I was back from college, my mom had asked my sister and I to pick up the order. She bribed us by saying that if we picked it up, she would buy us breakfast. So, we took the offer and have been doing the same thing ever since. We actually get a kick out of it and enjoy our sisterly time together every year. We are 10 years apart {and now she's in college 2.5 hours away} so it's nice to have a tradition together.
Christmas Lights

Every year J and I take an evening to drive around our town and sometimes surrounding towns and view Christmas lights. We enjoy seeing how other people decorate their homes and even get a chuckle out of those who go blow-up North Pole happy. We "ooooh" and "ahhh" while driving around for a few hours then usually head back home to watch a movie. It's great just being the two of us and having quality time together looking at something we enjoy.

We try to get to the Columbus Zoo every year as well. We went on one of our first dates to the zoo during Halloween, so it is a special place during the holidays for us. It's truly magical around Christmas time and I look forward to going when we get the chance.

Ever year between Thanksgiving and Christmas, J's parents take us out to dinner at Hyde Park. This year will be the fourth year we have gone and we look forward to it ever year. Hyde Park is a steak house in downtown Columbus. In the winter, the downtown is beautifully decorated with Christmas lights. After dinner we head down the street to walk through a large nativity scene.

J and I before dinner last year 
{he looks funny with the beard-no shave November continued to December}

I look forward to these small traditions we have made every year and I cannot wait to continue adding to our traditions list! I hope you all have a wonderful Thanksgiving with your friends and family. And thank you again Pam for letting me guest blog!


Undoubtedly, you all recognize Molly from Stilettos & Diapers by now. She is another one of my absolute favorite Mommy bloggers, and I'm so happy that she wanted to share a little about her favorite things about the holidays ...

  •  Making cookies with my boys and cooking for the family.
  •  Coffee, in my santa cup.
  • Christmas shopping! My favorite is Macy's NYC, of course!


Sonja from Running in Pearls has a few favorite things about the holiday season, and I must say, I agree with all three!
  • Playing Santa 
  • Gingerbread Lattes 
  • Christmas lights, smells, and music! 

By now, I'm sure you all recognize Lindsey from Love to the Moon & Back. She is a Momma to two beautiful girls and another one of my favorite Mommy bloggers!

 Lindsey's favorite things about the holiday season are ...
  1. Getting the house all set up for the holidays with the lights, tree decorating, etc. 
  2. Making a ridiculous amount of Christmas cookies for friends and family- my house smells like a bakery for most of december and that makes mama very happy :)


Beth is my newest sponsor and I am so happy that she is here with us, and love that she has special holiday memories that are important to her ...

My favorite things about the Holidays are:
  • Spending time with family and friends. Every year on the Wednesday before Thanksgiving, we get together with some close friends after church for a pre-Thanksgiving celebration. It has become one of my favorite traditions. The men deep fry our turkeys for the next day.  The ladies sit around our friends' old wood burning stove in their garage, snack on finger foods, and just enjoy being together. It is such a fun time of fellowship. Of course on Thanksgiving Day and the week of Christmas we try to squeeze in as much family time as possible. We stuff ourselves silly, talk, laugh, and play games like cards and Dominoes. 

  • M and I listening to Christmas music and watching Christmas movies together throughout December. My favorite is White Christmas. His favorite is Elf. It has also sort of become a tradition for us to watch Serendipity every year together.
  • My dad has read us the Night Before Christmas on Christmas Eve every year of my life. Now that my sister and I are both married, this has grown to include us, our husbands and all the puppies piled up on the couch while dad reads and mom takes pictures. I love it!  

It that didn't get you into the holiday spirit, than I'm afraid there may be no hope for you! 
So, what are your favorite things about the holidays? Do you and your family have special traditions, or are you trying to create new ones?


Lauren said...

Happy Thanksgiving, friend!! Have a great one!! :)

Unknown said...

Thanks lady!! Have a great holiday!

Amber said...

Oh I love seeing what peoples' fave parts of the holidays are.

I hope y'all have a happy thanksgiving! :)

Sonja said...

Oh wow! I definitely should have put more thought into that LOL you should have said something!!

Thanks for doing this! so sweet! and I love being a part of your blog! :)