This year, the festive holiday season is a bit lost on me. Things have been way too busy (and exciting) with the launch of Poppy Barley. I’ve been working very long hours and arriving home exhausted wanting to crawl into bed - not get fancied up to party.
So, I am very happy that Ross and I decided to spend a week in New York and then Christmas in Toronto. New York is magical this time of year. We’re staying in the Lower East Side where apartment-sized Christmas trees are sold on street corners and folks are dressed-up with Santa hats as they bar hop. Also on our to-do list: the window displays on Fifth Avenue, ice-skating in Bryant Park, Brooklyn’s Gifted Holiday Market, and the Holiday Americana at the Morgan Library & Museum where an original manuscript of Charles Dicken’s A Christmas Carol is on display.
Best Holiday Tradition: Our annual ornament that symbolizes a big milestone in our life during the previous year. Our family Christmas tree is full of stories and symbolism.
Favorite Holiday Movie: Love Actually or The Family Stone. And, it makes me giggle how much my dad loves It’s A Wonderful Life.
Best (Two) Gifts Ever: A custom-built dollhouse complete with carpeted floors, wallpaper and handmade furniture. It’s spectacular!
Back in the 90s, my parents gave me a metre of the Trans Canada Trail. The world’s longest network of recreational trails stretches 23,000 kilometres from the Atlantic to the Pacific to the Artic oceans. Four years ago, I was running in the Edmonton river valley (as I frequently do) and stopped inside of a pavilion in Louise McKinney Park. My name along with the names of my sisters was engraved to acknowledge our contributions. Best gift ever!
A Holiday Drink to Try....
A star of my bar cart is Domaine de Canton liqueur. Made in very small batches it’s infusion of Vietnamese ginger with herbes and spices grown in France’s Aquitaine region. The liqueur has a bright, yet rich and complex ginger flavor. Its taste is perfect for the holidays.
French Ginger Snap
- 2 Parts Domaine de Canton
- 1 Part Grey Goose Orange (or use any other citrus-flavored vodka)
- ½ Part Triple Sec
- ½ Part Fresh Lemon Juice
Shake and strain over ice. Garnish with an orange piece or lemon.
If any of these treasures made an appearance under the tree, I'd be sooo happy!
1. I admit to carelessly tossing my iPhone into my bag. This Smythson textured-leather iPhone 5 case brings some seriously luxury to an iPhone case.
2. Escaping to far away places is essential for rejuvenating my mind and creativity. Whether considering an iconic escape, weekend getaway or beach retreat, I always look to Mr & Mrs Smith to book my accommodation. This website curates the world’s best boutique and luxury hotels. A Smith Get a Room Gift Card tops my wish list.
3. With a slight obsession with stationery, I’ve always sought after my own custom notecards. The elegance and simplicity of these calligraphy notecards and envelopes makes them perfect for sending any message.
4. Cashmere. Always makes me happy. This sweater is from J.Crew.
5. It’s a Christmas tradition to receive new perfume. This year, I am intoxicated by the smell of Alien Essence Absolue Eau de Parfum. It’s a new interpretation of Alien with the lovely addition of vanilla – my favourite scent. (Available at The Bay).
6. This is beyond extravagant and falls more to the "wish" side of this list. This juicy gem from Concept Jewelry features a 3.95 purple spined mined in Sri Lanka and surrounded by color-enhanced green diamonds.
7. Recently, I started taking pilates classes. I really appreciate the body awareness pilates brings – especially as an avid runner with super tight hips and weak hamstrings. Just for the holidays, EQ Pilates has one-month unlimited mat class pass for $99 (regular price is $140).
8. I often leave the house at 5:30am to go run and return home at 9pm after a day of meetings, working and social engagements. I need a bag that can store everything I need for the day. This oversized Lululemon Take Me With You Tote does the trick.
From our Beauty Junkie gift guide, I’d love to find a Clarisonic, Josie Maran Oil and the Becca Shimmer in moonstone. The wanna-be-chef in me really wants the Jerusalem cookbook found in the Foodie gift guide.