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A New & Fun Holiday Tradition

So… Mike and I were in the shower this morning, talking about our charitable gift giving tradition, and I admitted that, even though I love it, part of me still feels like we should have some sort of gift for Christmas.

Soooo here’s what we came up with: each Christmas Eve, we’ll go on a little treasure hunt, wearing Santa hats, of course (this year we couldn’t find any last minute, so that part we’ll start next year). We’ll finish at about 4pm, in time for afternoon tea at a fancy hotel (this is the best deal ever – for $7 or $8 a pot, you can sit and hang out for hours, but make sure to arrive between 3pm and 4:30pm). We’ll set a spending limit (an amount that allows us to buy something nice, but not crazy) and only allow one item each. We’ll walk around Madison Ave and see what we can get for that amount.

In front of Barneys, on our treasure hunt :-)

In front of Barneys, on our treasure hunt :-)

A great bonus: this’ll take all the pressure out of having to find something the other person will like, since we’re picking our own gift.

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Need a Last-Minute Christmas Gift? Here’s One I Love

I’ve already sent this gift to three family members who are not very tecchie. It’s kind of the perfect gift – easy to use, fun, under $100 and something they’ll likely use daily (I do!), so it’ll be a regular reminder of how much you care about them. If they already have a smart TV, like me, they’ll still find it useful. Here’s why:

As I found out the expensive way, Smart TVs are very limited in what apps you can use, and their visual interface is far less evolved. A better option is to get this tiny $88 Roku box which turns any TV into a “super” Smart TV and gives you every app you ever wanted, plus a ton of other fun perks.


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Why I Love The Breakers

When we were stranded in Palm Beach, Florida because our flight was canceled this week, Kathryn and Bonnie (thank you!) at The Breakers saved us by giving us a fabulous room at a great media rate (because I wrote an article about The Breakers on a previous visit). It was a very nostalgic end to our Florida trip because The Breakers was Mike & my first trip together, so it’ll always have a special place in our heart. That, and because the whole experience is so impeccable each time, that we are constantly gushing over the incredible decor, perfect service, and gorgeous grounds and architecture.

I love everything Christmas: the music, the decor, the spirit. So I was super happy to see tons of it at The Breakers. Like the two massive Christmas trees in the lobby (which we did the obligatory photo in front of) and lots of accents all over the building.


When we got to our room, we found a nice little surprise: Read more

Holiday / Christmas Tips & Ideas

The season of snowmen and mistletoe is finally here and as you can guess, I am super excited because this year it’s extra special. For one thing, Mike and I are going to Mexico for a week right after Christmas. Mike’s friend Parker gave us a week vacation as a wedding gift (like, WOW. Thank you!!!) I’ve spent Christmas in warm climates before and, to me, it loses something. Maybe because I grew up in Canada, and am used to snowy Christmas’, I really need the snow to feel like I’m truly experiencing the holiday. That’s why I’m glad we’re leaving on the 28th. (More to come about that, of course!)


Yesterday we went for a walk on Worth Avenue in Palm Beach. I think if you lined up all the expensive shops in the Hamptons, it still wouldn’t come close to the number of high-end stores on this one street. It’s pretty decadent, and a super fun place to window shop. We didn’t buy anything (I prefer eBay, anyway!), but I did get to take some photos of a newly married couple in front of an enormous Christmas tree.

While I’ve been on vacation, I’ve been making a mental note of things that need to get done, shopping, party ideas to finalizing dinner recipes. I have been scouring the the net for holiday tips and tricks and have found some Read more

Don’t Buy Your Christmas Tree: Rent a Live One!


Happy Holidays! This is my favorite time of year and, in my opinion, it just got a lot better.

Did you know this?

New York City was the site of the country’s very first Christmas tree retail lot. In 1851, entrepreneur Mark Carr hauled two sleds loaded with pine trees from the Catskills and sold them in Manhattan.

Today, bundled evergreens line the streets of New York City from Thanksgiving through Christmas. The scent of evergreen mingles with the odors of taxi exhaust and urine (ahhh, New York during the holidays). Trees are sold from retail lots, from the backs of trucks, and from makeshift displays at local bodegas and stores.

I was watching a fantastic TV show called Shark Tank, where inventors and entrepreneurs pitch their companies to investors, and I saw a pitch for Living Christmas. Read more

An Awkward Thanksgiving

Last year we had a wonderful Thanksgiving in Brooklyn with our friends Max and Jill, so this year is the first time I’ve really experienced a true American Thanksgiving with family and in-laws. We spent it at Mike’s mom’s boyfriend’s place in Southampton. His house is very cute, with brown wood shingles; sort of like Nantucket-style.


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Thanksgiving in Canada

There’s something very comforting about going home for the holidays to the house, and town, you grew up in. The fact that everything still looks basically the same (or better) gives one a warming sense of stability.

I’d like to share my home with you, or rather, the home I grew up in. My mother was the architect and general contractor (so impressive since she’s definitely neither by trade), and my parents put this house together, brick by tile, as I was growing up.

Outside of Welcome, down several winding roads lined by trees and fields with cattle grazing, you’ll find a black mailbox marked Rowland. As you turn down the driveway, you’ll make several turns before you begin to see our blue house through the trees. As you come around another corner, you’ll see this:


One of my favorite things to do while home is to feed the many animals that Read more

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