Christmas is one of my favorite times of the year! I love the family gatherings, the delicious holiday treats, the Christmas music that reminds me of my youth, Secret Santa gifts for school, the beautiful lights and trees everywhere, hunting for the perfect gift for loved ones and most importantly, celebrating the birth of Jesus. But sometimes I need a little help to get me through some of the last minute craziness of the holidays, and that’s where my Christmas Survival Kit helps me stay sane and continue with my holiday spirit:
I love the Starbucks holiday drinks served in the holiday cups. My favorite is the Peppermint Mocha; espresso, steamed milk, mocha sauce and peppermint flavored syrup. Topped with sweetened whipped cream and dark chocolate curls. YUM! Along with their holiday drinks, I also love and look forward to their Cranberry Bliss Bar every year; a blondie cake base, topped with sweet cream cheese icing, tart dried cranberries and white orange drizzle. It’s delicious!
In my house we all love to listen to Christmas music, but one album in particular has been part of my Christmas tradition since I was very young. The Salsoul Orchestra Christmas Jollies. Typical Christmas songs with a disco, dance twist (yes, in case you’re wondering, I grew up in the 70s and 80s). You can listen to some of the songs and download the entire album if you like it on iTunes here.
We also love to watch Christmas movies, I love them all really, but my favorite has to be Love Actually. Not only do I love the message it sends, but I also happen to love many of the actors in the film (my favorites being Colin Firth and Hugh Grant).
Another Christmas tradition from my youth, and I have continued it in my adult life is the Swiss Colony Christmas Petit Fours, you can order some here. Every year I order boxes for all of my family members (they all love them too), and I make sure we have plenty to serve on Christmas day. It’s just not Christmas without Swiss Colony!
And last but not least, I love to sit at night with my husband sipping hot chocolate, and just gaze at our beautifully decorated tree. I’ve been collecting Christmas ornaments for many years, Hallmark dated ones to mark special occasions, glass and ceramic ornaments from our various trips to Greece, Germany, Spain and Italy, as well as many others I’ve received as gifts. My daughter just told me the other day that our tree was very special, and that she had never seen any other tree with such beautiful and special ornaments. That made my day!
But sometimes I can get a bit stressed when trying to figure out what to buy that one difficult person (usually the men in my family). Last year, I came across Man Crates, a company that specializes in creating wooden gift boxes for men with anything from movie night to golfing (oh, and did I mention it comes with a crowbar for them to open it with?) As stated on their website:
“We say ‘no’ to ugly neckties, cologne samplers and executive trinkets.
We don’t save wrapping paper, we don’t do ribbons.
We ship bragworthy gifts for guys.
Gifts that you can’t wait to arrive because you know the recipient will love opening them.
Gifts that people gather round at the office, people following the sounds of wood being torn from wood by the included, laser-engraved crowbar.
We are Man Crates, and we deliver awesome gifts for men”
So, if you’re looking for some creative gifts for the men in your life, make sure to check out Man Crates and click here for some awesome gift ideas . I’m sure you will find something very original for that special guy. Prices for crates range from $25 – $180. Here’s one of my favorites:
The Clean Shave Crate Photo Courtesy of Man Crates
What are your holiday must haves? I’d love to hear!