Santa List

Today is Santa List. The day that you are supposed to make sure you are on the Nice List. Santa and the elves already know but you have time to adjust yourself accordingly. I know a lot of people do not believe in Santa. It’s a personal preference.

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Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

What I love about days like this is it’s about fun of the season. I love days.  I love knowing that there are some interesting ones out there. This is one. Having fun and being light and learning how to smile and being the type of energy the world could use is all things to be aware of. Here is my list of what I  think would get you off The Naughty List.  What are some of the things you could do to get on the Nice List?

Here are a few of my ideas:

  • Make sure you’re nice to those around you
  • Pay it forward
  • Give to others
  • Smile at others more
  • Give towards a charity that you are super passionate about
  • Be the friend to others that you want in return
  • Help another person today and everyday
  • Get rid of anger and negativity
  • Think before you speak
  • Speak kindness towards others
  • Treat someone at the coffee shop to a drink of their choice
  • Pay off someone’s Christmas Layaway (Christmas angels do exist)
  • Do an extra chore or household responsibility of your roommate or partner
  • Volunteer in your community
  • Sponsor a family for holiday dinner

FYI-these are already things we should be doing all the time. But if today you find yourself on that Naughty List, you better find a way to incorporate a few of these suggestions into your life! Have Fun.  As far as I am concerned Larry The Elf at my house reassured me that I am already on the Nice List and I plan to stay on there! Have a little fun with it!

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Breakfast with Santa: Legoland Discovery Center

Every year we do at least one Breakfast with Santa but this year we decided to do it at Legoland Discovery Center in Plymouth Meeting, PA.

One of the benefits of having a season pass to Legoland is getting invited to exclude events. This event was free to Legoland Discovery Yearly pass. We were invited for a continental breakfast with Lego Santa himself. Once there breakfast was already ready. The kids and adults were able to help themselves. The guest of honor made his way over and gave our letters so that the kids could write a letter to Santa! Not to mention full access to the play center before regular opening hours. That in itself is a major win!

Even though it was our first year at the event it definitely will not be our last. The kids had a great time making a morning of fun and the adults were able to relax knowing the children are in a secure fun atmosphere. Plus anything with coffee sign me up!! If you’re in the area and looking for a place for your children to have fun in all year would consider coming to Legoland Discovery! We bought the year pass due to wanting to have an option for the Winter months as well as rainy days like today.

There is a huge jungle gym, snack center, active places to build LEGO projects of all kinds, mini 3D movies, laser zone, and of course a live action Lego man that comes out several times to take pictures with everyone all year long. One of the best parts is the interactive ride for the family of all ages to enjoy!

So I would certainly give my stamp of approval for Legoland Discovery Center! It’s a must try if you’re in the area!!

Who doesn’t love festive events? Certainly my family loves them!! Here’s to getting into the full swing of holiday events and things to do! Also if you have a family of multiple kids gift cards to LEGOLAND make a great group gift as well!! This way instead of more toys you give the gift of an outing!! That is the gift that keep on giving!!

Christmas Village Experience 2018

So as many of you know I came across the Christmas Village last year doing a Google search for free family fun. I then convinced my family to give the authentic outdoor German Market a try. We were impressed and excited to attend again this year. This year I was invited to take an intimate look at what the Christmas Village really has to offer behind the scenes. This year thanks to the renovations of the Love Park sign, it was even more special!

I was able to attend the opening ceremony to light “The Present.” Thanks to Mayor Jim Kenney who hit it home with his opening speech about giving towards others. This is the season to not just think about ourselves and our families but how we can best serve the people of Philadelphia. The Present is 27 feet in height, well-lit holiday present. It is in the middle of the Christmas Village.  Not only is it visually stunning, its set as a reminder to give to others.  If you are in the area you can give by texting and you will receive a gift tag that can be displayed on “The Present” that is a symbol of what the holiday is all about. You can actively give by doing the following:

  • TEXT PARKS to 501501 to donate to Fairmount Park Conservancy will go towards helping Philadelphia Parks
  • TEXT BOOKS  to 20222 to donate to Welcome America’s holiday book campaign for Parks and Recreation. Every $5 raised will purchase a total of 4 books. 
  • TEXT 80100 to donate to Project Home to help end poverty and homelessness

Inside “The Present”

“The Present is open starting today to the public all the way through December 24th. It’s free to enter and as you can see from the above photos it’s a beauty to see, take photos and walk inside!  I felt like the biggest kid. The colors and lights had me mesmerized. 

So I knew after watching “The Present” light up that I was off to a good start. The first stop on the tour was the German Grill. The open grill had all the best of the German deliciousness. From Bratwurst to Schnitzel, I was in pure Heaven. The open grill is such a delight and the smells pulled me in. I was completely satisfied.  As soon as I got home, I was upset as to why I didn’t take a Bratwurst to go. 

This took me to the second stop on the tour and that was to the open beer garden, The Alm. It’s always a good idea for beer. There are a lot of new items on the menu. Let me also point out for families with young children. This is a great spot to combine adulting and kids. It’s closed in. So this means a lot of play for the kids and drinks for the adults. This year they have a new beer mug. It’s a beauty to behold and you know that the bigger the cup, the bigger the gulp!

As if the beer wasn’t enough, I made my way to one if that’s right one of the wine offerings, German Gluhwein.  It’s a mulled wine. They offer a white and a red wine and both were amazing.

Next up was Käthe Wohlfahrt. This indoor gem blew my mind. This unique shop was full of mostly hand-made treasures. From one of a kind pieces to ornaments and decorations, it was a delight. Note there is no videography or photos for the public. However I was able to get you that inside look. What I will say is this is a must on your stops through the open village. Be careful as some of the pieces are pricey. So if you have little ones just hold their hands. I do believe once they see how well-lit and how beautiful the pieces are, they will spend more time asking questions than running through the store.

Next stop was the The Bacon Jams. I’ve never had bacon jam but today I wanted to buy all of them. These easy to spread jams taste super authentic to real bacon. The flavors were amazing. I tried every last one. From the maple bacon to the honey bourbon! All of them were a treat!

I believe I was turning into a foodie by the end of the night. The next stop was to Sweets where we tried some toasted chestnuts. I’ve never had any before but I was a believer tonight. Be sure if you attend that you make your way. There are other sweet treats as well.

Keeping in line with sweets we make our way to John and Kira’s. This was like chocolate Heaven! I tried for her first time honey bee chocolate made from local honey bee. First of all this gooey treat should be eaten in one bite. It’s honey flavor mixed with chocolate had to be the best that I have had in a long time. We also had some amazing sea salt caramel.

If you ever been to the Christmas Village you are full aware of the Raclette. It’s basically the best cheese I’ve ever eaten, that is melted under a special heated lamp and the cheese oozes onto some of the freshest bread Philadelphia has to offer. I was in cheese coma. Let me say that yes I took one for the team of non dairy, but I ain’t feel not ounce of shame.

For those who love unique cards you must stop at Love Pop. You can get pop up 3D cards. I enjoyed the tour and I plan to grab a few to give to special friends.

Our next stop was Mike’s Hot Honey. We were told that when you taste it, it would be sweet and then bitter and it was true. Mike’s Hot Honey is a spread that can be put on almost anything from bagels to chicken. I enjoyed it. I don’t know if I am getting a cold but if I was when I left I definitely felt like my palette was cleared. 

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Of course we needed something a little sweet so we headed over to Helmuts Original Austrian Strudel. They had your classics like cherry but they also had some that were a definite go back and true such as the meat and pulled pork puffs. They even have a mac and cheese one!  

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cherry

One of the final stops before ending with hot chocolate was Truffleist. This is what the name says, Truffle. So between some amazing cheeses and salami, the truffle butter was everything. I mean everyone enjoyed it. They have an amazing selection and to be honest I could eat that truffle butter by the spoonfuls. It was that good. 

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One more goodie before I end, I love hand blown glass. The colors are amazing. So I had to take a picture of the Mouth Blown Ornaments. 

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So the tour was everything and more. You and your family or friends will have an amazing time. I tried to give you a snippet of what it would be like. The only thing that I didn’t see was Santa but you can catch Santa in the Santa Hut for pics starting on the weekends and then close to the season being over he will be there everyday. I would make sure you go and see him if you’re trying to get on the Nice List. 

Special thanks to Philadelphia Christmas Village, the sponsors: Bank of America, Acme, Käthe Wohlfahrt, and Hernnhuter and all of the partners who helped to make this day. Also shout out to all of the amazing vendors who bring the Christmas Village to Life rain or shine. Remember its free to enter and you only pay for the food, drinks, and treasures you find. 

Special shout out to Kory Aversa and the Aversa PR and Events for having me. 

So head on over and grab your kids, your friends, your girls, or your boys and  have an experience to remember!

Hours:
Sunday – Thursday: 11:00am – 7:00pm
Friday – Saturday: 11:00am – 8:00pm
Christmas Eve: 11:00am – 5:00pm

Location:
LOVE Park, 1500 Arch Street, Philadelphia, PA 19102

Yearly Breakfast with Santa

One of my favorite things to do is to do the breakfast with Santa. It is such a great time. We have been doing it for the past 5 years and I love looking back and seeing the growth of the children in the pics.

This year as we always try to do is match. Outside of Easter what is the another time to dress alike? I personally take all dressing alike to another level. I live for these moments. Also I’m grateful for a husband who just goes with the flow. I used to only dress me and the kids but of late I’ve been making it a family affair. Anyone who knows me knows I like any personalized item.

We go to the Greater Plymouth Community Center and we have breakfast to start. At some point the Chick Fil-A cow comes in dressed in Santa gear. They have a room of activities and crafts and of course Santa Claus himself.

The kids and the parents have a blast and it always includes bingo. This year all 3 kids won prizes!!

So here’s to another year of having breakfast with Santa!!

What does a Blogger like me want for Christmas?

I was asked this question and at first I was like would anyone want to know that.  First let me say that this is not a blog to get a thang! I am good.  Nor is this blog to help or aid my husband in any of his gift giving endeavors.  He already gives the most amazing gifts and listens to me when I talk.  Not only that I have kindly made him a little cheat sheet a few weeks ago.

So for me I am a creature of habit and a creature of comfort.  I like the things that I have been eyeing all year-long over trendier items. If the item is in trend it has to align with something I was already thinking. Last year I wanted a laptop so I could bring more content and I got that.  I would have been super happy with that alone. Laptops ain’t cheap but the investment into my blog made it feel like it was a good idea.  It was.  My husband as he always does went above and beyond. Shout out to Marques for always thinking of me.

This year I made a list all year-long of things I wanted.  I got some of the items myself.  Like for instance I wanted some Daisy Perfume by Marc Jacobs.  One my most recent girls trip I got a bottle.  I had been eyeing it and made the decision of why not.  So that is how I like to enjoy holiday gifts.  I really make a list of all the things that mom guilt has told me to wait on and get them at the end of the year if I haven’t done so during the year.

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So things like new clothes or specific pieces that I may had my eye on.  I like things that are about comfort and will cost me less money down the line.  For instance gift cards to go to Soul Cycle sessions.  Gift cards are never a tacky thing for me.  I shop like I am rich after Christmas and you can’t tell me a thing.  So for some its an issue with me never.  I love stores like Starbucks, Target, Ulta, etc Anything where I can get what I want and not what someone things I want is always a nice thing.  One year I got over $350.00 in gift cards and you couldn’t wipe the smile in my face.  I felt like I was a shopping goddess and I had a lot of things that lasted.

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I love things that like gift cards to nail salons or facials.  Anything where I can zone out and make an excuse to increase me time.  When I go I make it my business to leave the little folks behind with their dad of course and I over extend my me time to the fullest.  Like walk every aisle with coffee really slow type of shopping. I don’t even like going to stores unless it’s after the holidays.  Other than that I get my typing fingers ready so I can make sure that I get the good deals too.

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This Christmas I am still in the comfort business.  Anything soft like a new throw pillow, pajamas that feel great, beauty products, etc I love.

The holidays aren’t about getting but if I am going to get I like it to feel like it’s the end of the year comfort party, but honestly the events of the holidays are what I really enjoy most.  This time is magical I plan on taking it in gifts or not!

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