Some of you may have seen on Instagram that I recently purchased a record player for our home and have started amassing a collection of my favorite Christmas albums on vinyl. I am a total Christmas music junkie and it’s what I’ve been listening to almost exclusively since the first week of November. I totally get it if you’re the type that prefers to wait until December, but for me it just makes the season when I am creating and shooting so much holiday content feel so much more festive so November it is! You guys loved when I shared my Christmas music favorites so much last year that I decided to update The Sweetest Christmas playlist with some additional selections for this holiday season, some old and some new. In addition to my growing collection of holiday vinyls, this is my go-to playlist and is, in my humble opinion, one of the best Christmas playlists you’re ever going to find. It’s got the classics, it’s got the modern classics and it’s got a few brand new songs that were just released this year. Check it out! Follow along on Spotify and let me know if you want additional playlists throughout the year, too. I’m happy to oblige! (Scroll down for a track list for those of you who don’t use Spotify.)
Whatever it is about the holidays, I become a total Instagram junkie this time of year. I guess you can call me a sucker for an excessive number of photos of Christmas lights, homemade ornaments and cups of cocoa. Like a good holiday movie, I just can’t get enough of catching a glimpse of how people are celebrating. Maybe it’s simply that seeing all the incredible joy this time of year inspires just makes me so damn happy. Basically, I’m a big Christmas season nerd and I can’t fight it! Today I’m sharing 10 seriously inspiring Instagram accounts you absolutely need to be following this time of year! Prepare yourself for an influx of gift ideas, recipes, cocktails and Christmas trees. While you’re at, be sure to give me a follow, too, if you’re not already! In addition to new posts I also share glimpses of favorite holiday posts from the archives, my personal holiday season adventures, and cute photos of my sweet little kid, too.
Entertaining is definitely a passion of ours, but during the holidays we seriously ramp it up, even for us. Already on our hosting calendar for December is a Christmas brunch with Bob’s side of the family, a Christmas cocktail party with our neighbors, a potential gathering with Bob’s co-workers, and the usual Christmas Eve and Christmas Day festivities. Add in any number of the impromptu get togethers we’re known for and it’s safe to say that this time of year I go into hostess mode for a month or more straight. That’s why today I’ve teamed up with the folks at Tyson® to share my top ten tips for easy last minute holiday entertaining! It’s my goal to help you feel empowered to entertain during the holidays, even if maybe you don’t typically throw parties or even consider yourself a host or hostess. So here I’m sharing my favorite ways to streamline prep work, inspiration for really simple recipes, and a bunch of “do ahead” and “last minute” ideas so you can hop off to the grocery store the night before or last minute and bring things together without a lot of stress.
A few years ago Bob and I sat down over coffee and had a long talk about our holiday shopping tendencies. It wasn’t our first such talk, but it was the cumulative talk where we got real with ourselves about our Christmas shopping habits to date and devised a new set of Christmas gifting traditions. Today I am collaborating with Walmart to share more about those new traditions and how we decided we wanted to put more effort into selecting fewer, more memorable gifts for the kids and our loved ones over the holiday season. We realized we were both feeling frantic every holiday season and it seemed we were buying endless stacks of gifts that lost their meaning because they were just one among many. We knew we wanted our kids to look back and remember joyful holiday celebrations full of love, cheer and a few really special gifts instead of just never-ending tearing of paper from packages. So, we are now the family with stockings packed full of little goodies, a small handful of carefully chosen gifts for each family member, and matching Christmas pajamas to give Christmas morning that extra cheeky cheer. I mean, you can’t forget the matching Christmas pajamas!
Now that Thanksgiving has come and gone, things are about to get decidedly merry around these parts! Tis the season for entertaining and I, for one, could not be happier to host family and friends as often as possible over the next several weeks. Today I’ve teamed up with 34 Degrees to share a few easy tips and inspiring ideas for hosting a simple yet super chic holiday cocktail party. I think this is truly the easiest way to entertain over the holidays and oftentimes the most fun, too! You won’t have to spend hours prepping, cooking and then cleaning the kitchen and with a stash of 34 Degrees crisps at the ready, you can serve up tasty gourmet bites in a flash. Plate them alongside a selection of delicious cocktails, crank your favorite holiday playlist and you’ve got a hip holiday party waiting to happen.