Archive | December, 2015

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Good Morning Granola

Happy Holidays! I hope you all enjoyed making memories with friends and loved ones last week. No white Christmas for us this year, but no complaints about the above average temperatures either. I’m sure if you’re like us, you’ve been indulging a bit more the last few weeks. As much as I love all the goodies, I’m ready to get back to more sensible eating.

I’ve always enjoyed a good granola. It’s a healthy comfort food for me, and I love its versatility. It makes a great breakfast with a little almond milk and fresh berries. We love to sprinkle it over greek yogurt, and it also makes a great snack on its own. The problem is, the store bought varieties can be rather pricey and contain a lot of unhealthy fats and sugar making this high protein superfood, not so healthy.

So, I decided to do my own spin on it. I’d like to share a recipe that I’ve had for years and tweaked along the way. This recipe can also be made gluten free. Prepare yourself though. While baking, your house is going to smell heavenly.

Ingredients

2 cups rolled oats ( gluten free, if desired)

1/4 cup flour (coconut flour, or other gluten free option)

2 Tablespoons flax meal

2 Tablespoons chia seeds

3/4 cup raw almonds

3/4 cup raw walnuts

3/4 cup raw pecans

3/4 cup raw pepitas

2 teaspoons cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon nutmeg

pinch of cloves

1/4 teaspoon sea salt

1/4 cup coconut oil

1/3 cup honey

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Optional: 3/4 cup dried cranberries

  1. Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together oats, flour, flax meal, chia seeds, almonds, walnuts, pecans, pepitas, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves and salt.
  3. In a small saucepan, add coconut oil, honey and vanilla extract and heat on low, stirring frequently until coconut oil is completely melted. Pour over dry ingredients and mix well until oats are completely coated.IMG_1805
  4. Spread the granola evenly on the baking pan and bake for 20 minutes. Gently stir granola and add cranberries, if using. Return granola to the oven and bake 15 minutes longer or until granola is a light golden brown. Remove from oven and allow to cool completely on baking sheet. Once cooled, transfer to an airtight container and enjoy for 7-10 days.

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This batch makes about 10 servings.

Trail Mix

As I stated earlier, this recipe is very versatile and also makes a great trail mix with just a few adjustments.

For the trail mix, I omit the oats and add 3/4 cup raw mixed nuts. I bake for the same amount of time and after the mixture comes out of the oven, I let it completely cool then add 1 cup of dark chocolate chips and half a cup of unsweetened coconut flakes and mix. The girls love taking this to school for a snack.

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Enjoy!

~May

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Merry Christmas

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We would like to wish you and yours peace, good will, and happiness during this holiday season and throughout the New Year. Enjoy and celebrate the beauty of the present moment.

Merry Christmas!

~May and June

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Christmas Quiet

The lead up to Christmas is always full of frantic preparation.  There is the shopping, the decorating, the wrapping, the baking and the holiday parties.  I end up in a state where my breathing is shallow, I sleep fitfully with my mind racing full of my to-do-list and generally run around like a chicken with my head cut-off.  This is not the way I want to spend the Christmas season.  But every year without fail it happens.  My oasis is coming, though, and that is Christmas Eve.

When I was a child, my parents always hosted Christmas Day.  The day was bedlam, fun, but bedlam.  There were easily 20 people for a full turkey dinner in a pretty small house.  When it was time to open gifts, the living room was wall to wall people, Christmas tree, packages and wrapping paper.  To offset the craziness of Christmas Day, my parents started a tradition on Christmas Eve of having a quiet dinner at home after an early mass, with only our immediate family.

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(Bedlam on Christmas Day)

We always had steaks on the grill which was a treat because we rarely had steak.  After mass, we often would put on our pajamas or our lounge clothes to relax from being dressed up.  Before dinner was served, we would take a quiet moment, reread the gospel of the birth of Jesus, my youngest brother would place the baby Jesus in the nativity set and say grace.  The dinner was always eaten by the light of only candles and the Christmas tree.  It was always a cozy night full of the things that made up the true meaning of Christmas.

Because of that feeling and sentiment we still carry on that tradition.  For Christmas Eve, my husband and I will be hosting.  We will make sure there is a fire in the fireplace, candles lit, the Christmas tree and my other twinkle lights.  Instead of only having steak now, everyone just brings their own favorite meat.  For some of us that still means steaks.  For others, it may be pork, chicken or in one case, bratwurst (weird).  We will gather together to enjoy the quiet of the season.  My gift will be hospitality and for the others it may be a funny joke, a good bottle of wine or a sweet treat.  But in all cases we will enjoy each other’s company, revel in some quiet and remember that the frantic preparations are all worth it to enjoy the gift of being together.

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May you and yours have a very Merry Christmas. – June

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December Book Club

It’s time for our December book post.  There is nothing more relaxing then to sit and get lost in a good story.  Hopefully, you will have some time over the holidays to enjoy some quiet time and curl up with a good book.

After You by Jojo Moyes

After You

 

From Amazon:

“You’re going to feel uncomfortable in your new world for a bit. But I hope you feel a bit exhilarated too. Live boldly. Push yourself. Don’t settle. Just live well. Just live. Love, Will.”
 
How do you move on after losing the person you loved? How do you build a life worth living?
 
Louisa Clark is no longer just an ordinary girl living an ordinary life. After the transformative six months spent with Will Traynor, she is struggling without him. When an extraordinary accident forces Lou to return home to her family, she can’t help but feel she’s right back where she started.
 
Her body heals, but Lou herself knows that she needs to be kick-started back to life. Which is how she ends up in a church basement with the members of the Moving On support group, who share insights, laughter, frustrations, and terrible cookies. They will also lead her to the strong, capable Sam Fielding—the paramedic, whose business is life and death, and the one man who might be able to understand her. Then a figure from Will’s past appears and hijacks all her plans, propelling her into a very different future. . . .
 
For Lou Clark, life after Will Traynor means learning to fall in love again, with all the risks that brings. But here Jojo Moyes gives us two families, as real as our own, whose joys and sorrows will touch you deeply, and where both changes and surprises await.

May’s Thoughts: After You is the continuation of one of my favorite books by JoJo Moyes, Me Before You. I always get a little nervous with sequels, but After You did not disappoint. Although it started a little slow for me (I almost wish I had re-read Me Before You), I was soon drawn back into Louisa Clark’s world, and thoroughly enjoyed her continued journey as Will Traynor continues to influence her life. I was left feeling that a third book might be in the future. A lovely book.

June’s Thoughts:  I loved the character Louisa Clark from Me Before You.  This book picks up a little while after the end of Me Before You.  Lou changed a lot in Me Before You but she is not done yet.  Will Traynor changed her, but she is still not sure what she is supposed to do with him gone and how she misses him.  Due to some shocking events, she is forced to change even more and open her heart in ways she never imagined.  A sweet, thoughtful book which will again require tissues as you root for Lou to finally find happiness with herself.

Coincidence of the Coconut Cake by Amy E. Reichert

Coincidenc of the The Cocunut Cake

From Amazon:

You’ve Got Mail meets How to Eat a Cupcake in this delightful novel about a talented chef and the food critic who brings down her restaurant—whose chance meeting turns into a delectable romance of mistaken identities.

In downtown Milwaukee, Wisconsin, Lou works tirelessly to build her beloved yet struggling French restaurant, Luella’s, into a success. She cheerfully balances her demanding business and even more demanding fiancé…until the morning she discovers him in the buff—with an intern.

Witty yet gruff British transplant Al is keeping himself employed and entertained by writing scathing reviews of local restaurants in the Milwaukee newspaper under a pseudonym. When an anonymous tip sends him to Luella’s, little does he know he’s arrived on the worst day of the chef’s life. The review practically writes itself: underdone fish, scorched sauce, distracted service—he unleashes his worst.

The day that Al’s mean-spirited review of Luella’s runs, the two cross paths in a pub: Lou drowning her sorrows, and Al celebrating his latest publication. As they chat, Al playfully challenges Lou to show him the best of Milwaukee and she’s game—but only if they never discuss work, which Al readily agrees to. As they explore the city’s local delicacies and their mutual attraction, Lou’s restaurant faces closure, while Al’s column gains popularity. It’s only a matter of time before the two fall in love…but when the truth comes out, can Lou overlook the past to chase her future?

Set in the lovely, quirky heart of Wisconsin, The Coincidence of Coconut Cake is a charming love story of misunderstandings, mistaken identity, and the power of food to bring two people together.

May’s Thoughts: This is Amy Reacher’s first novel and I thought it was a charming although somewhat predictable story of a chef, Elizabeth “Lou” Johnson, who is struggling to make a success of her small French restaurant after a scathing review by the local restaurant critic. It was a cute love story with a wonderful recipe for coconut cake at the back of the book. Can’t wait to try it out!

June’s Thoughts:  This is a cute romantic comedy-type book.  I love books that include food as a character of the book and this one does so, the coconut cake plays an important role.  The book is set in Milwaukee which was fun because I lived in Milwaukee for a couple of years.  Although, Milwaukee has apparently gotten more hip than when I lived there.  It sounds like there are a couple of cool places that may require a road trip to visit.  I liked the characters and the overall story.  However, I did start to get a little annoyed by the end because the whole story where one character knows something that is a secret from the other character gets a little overplayed.  The end was a good one, though, which helped redeem that part.

The Lake House by Kate Morton

 

Lake House

From Amazon:

From the New York Times and internationally bestselling author of The Secret Keeper and The Distant Hours, an intricately plotted, spellbinding new novel of heartstopping suspense and uncovered secrets.

Living on her family’s idyllic lakeside estate in Cornwall, England, Alice Edevane is a bright, inquisitive, innocent, and precociously talented sixteen-year-old who loves to write stories. But the mysteries she pens are no match for the one her family is about to endure…

One midsummer’s eve, after a beautiful party drawing hundreds of guests to the estate has ended, the Edevanes discover that their youngest child, eleven-month-old Theo, has vanished without a trace. What follows is a tragedy that tears the family apart in ways they never imagined.

Decades later, Alice is living in London, having enjoyed a long successful career as an author. Theo’s case has never been solved, though Alice still harbors a suspicion as to the culprit. Miles away, Sadie Sparrow, a young detective in the London police force, is staying at her grandfather’s house in Cornwall. While out walking one day, she stumbles upon the old estate—now crumbling and covered with vines, clearly abandoned long ago. Her curiosity is sparked, setting off a series of events that will bring her and Alice together and reveal shocking truths about a past long gone…yet more present than ever.

A lush, atmospheric tale of intertwined destinies, this latest novel from a masterful storyteller is an enthralling, thoroughly satisfying read.

May’s Thoughts: Love, love, love Kate Morton. I was on a long waiting list at the library for her latest novel, The Lake House. I’ve read all of her books, and always enjoy how she blends the past with the present story. The characters in this book all had a story to tell about a midsummer’s eve party gone wrong. Although The Forgotten Garden is still my favorite Kate Morton novel, I did enjoy this book but have to admit, I was a little disappointed at how the book ended. It was a little too tidy.

June’s Thoughts:  I love Kate Morton.  One of my all-time favorite books is The Forgotten Garden by the same author.  This one, while it did not surpass that book, was definitely enjoyed.  The book is set in Cornwall, England and alternates between what happened many years ago during a midsummer’s eve party at a beautiful, idyllic lake house and the present where a disgraced police detective finds out about the event while on a forced leave.  It combines a mystery and a little romance.  The book is long and it took me a while to figure out what had happened to Alice’s little brother.  The ending was a little too neat, but in general was pretty satisfying.

We hope you enjoy our selections.  Let us know if you have read any of them and what you thought.  Happy Weekend before Christmas! –May and June

 

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Easy DIY Christmas Decoration

This past weekend I put together some easy Christmas decorations using items I had around the house.  I have plenty of Christmas decorations but I was just having fun to see what I could create.  I had some big glass jars that were part of a centerpiece from our wedding and which I use sometimes as candle holders now, some Mason jars, pine cones, bottle brush trees, cheap Target Christmas ornaments, buffalo snowflakes and the most important thing, battery operated twinkle lights.

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I just put the items in different jars to see how they would look.  I generally like how they turned out and they add a little festive glow where I set them.  The best part is after the holidays, I can simply disassemble them and reuse the parts in other ways or put the parts away for another creation next Christmas.

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My attitude with decorating is just try it.  It just takes a little time. So it may be a little weird or it may not turn out, but sometimes you create something that you like.  And with all of the serious things going on in the world this is fun.  I often agonize over what color nail polish to pick when I have a manicure and pedicure, but this is the thing, it is just nail polish.  Decorating is the same way, it can always be changed.  Hope all of your Christmas shopping and decorating is completed. –June

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Forward Fold (Uttanasana)

The human body, mind, and spirit are constantly being bombarded with stresses throughout life. As kids and teens, we encounter the daily stress associated with school and activities, and as we move into adulthood, those stresses increase with the responsibilities of making a living, marriage, and children. That’s why I love yoga. During those times of increased stress and tension, it brings balance and harmony whenever we practice, keeping us grounded, relaxed, and focused. I also love that you can practice yoga anytime, anywhere, whenever you need it. Lately, I’ve found myself doing a lot of standing forward bends or as I like to call it, rag doll pose. It feels great when I’ve been on my feet for long periods of time (Christmas shopping), or if I’ve been sitting at my desk for a while.

Even though it doesn’t look like much, standing forward fold gives a complete stretch to the back of the body. It lengthens the hamstrings and calves, plus it releases tension in the shoulders and back of the neck. I have always carried all my tension across my shoulders so for me, this stretch does the trick. This posture also supplies the brain with an increased amount of blood, and it calms the central nervous system.

To practice a forward fold, simply stand with your feet just inside the hips, keeping them parallel. Place your hands on your hips and with a flat back, begin to bring the body forward. If you have any back issues, simply rest your hands on your thighs for support, going about halfway down as Alyssa is demonstrating in the photo below. If you feel a little wobbly, you can also practice with your backside against a wall for stability.

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If you want to transition further into the posture, bring the body all the way down, holding opposite elbows with your hands. Your head is relaxed, your body is heavy and soft, and your breath is full and deep. I typically like to hold for ten deep breaths, but it’s important to listen to your own body’s needs. When you’re ready to stand, place your hands back on your hips, soften your knees, and gently lift yourself to a standing position.

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This posture also feels great at the end of a long day, before getting into bed. Have a great Monday.

Namaste,

~May

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Holiday Happy Hour-Pomegranate Martini

Welcome to May and June’s holiday edition of Happy Hour Friday. Tis the season for cocktail parties, where fun holiday drinks are often on the menu. We (and our husbands) recently celebrated the spirit of Christmas with festive pomegranate martinis, yummy appetizers, and great conversation (not to mention a few laughs). May found this great martini recipe a few years back after seeing it on Oprah. She made it for a holiday party at her home and it was a big hit, so we thought we’d stick with a good thing.

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Pomegranate Martini

Ingredients: 2 servings

1 1/2 cups pomegranate juice

2 ounces Absolute citrus infused vodka (We used Grey Goose)

1 ounce Cointreau liqueur

1 cup ice

Sparkling water (splash, optional)

Lemon (a squeeze, optional)

Shake ingredients in a shaker and pour into chilled martini glasses. Add pomegranate fruit into each glass as a garnish.

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In addition to our cocktails, we also had an array of yummy appetizers, all from Trader Joe’s.

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We found a great recipe for cocktail meatballs on Trader Joe’s website that we wanted to share with you. You can make them in the slow cooker and turn the setting to warm when you’re ready to serve them.

Sweet Balls of Fire:

2 packages TJ’s Turkey Meatballs
1 cup TJ’s Cranberry Sauce
2 jars TJ’s Sweet Chili Sauce

DIRECTIONS

Preheat oven to 350°.

Prepare sauce: In a sauce pan add 1 cup of cranberry sauce and 2 jars of sweet chili sauce. Stir and heat until sauce begins to bubble.

Place meatballs in a baking dish (9″ x 9″) and cover with warm cranberry sweet chili sauce mixture. Place in oven and heat for about 20-30 minutes, or until meatballs are heated through and sauce is hot. Alternatively, use a slow cooker to heat meatballs and sauce, about 5-6 hours on low, or 2-4 hours on high until heated through.

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Cheers!

~May and June

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Decorative Christmas Collections

I am not a collector by nature, unless you count shoes.  I do not collect coins or stamps like my husband does.  I do not collect teacups or spoons or small figurines.  That is not to say I live in a spartan home because  I certainly seem to have quite a bit of “stuff,”  but not any cohesive collection of any one thing.  But that all changes when I get out my Christmas decorations.

I always forget what is included in my Christmas collections until I get them out.  It is a little gift I get each year as I open the boxes and unpack all of the contents.  My collections are a mix of new and vintage, some that are steeped in nostalgic memories and others that are simply clearance items from Target.

One of my favorites, is my collection of miniature Christmas trees.  Some of the trees I have bought, some my mom gave me from her Department 56 village and others have been gifts.  I’m not sure why these trees speak to me.  Growing up our family always went and cut down our Christmas tree.  It was always a grand adventure, or it seemed that way anyway, that the perfect tree was waiting in the field to come home and be ours.  We learned over a few years, that trees ALWAYS look smaller in the field then they do once they are in the living room.  There was more than one year where the tree was so big it was hard to maneuver around the house.

I do one display with lots of trees for a big visual impact.  I think when you have collections of smaller things, that grouping them together makes a bigger statement.  However, because I like to keep a theme throughout the house I sprinkle in other trees here and there among my other decorations.

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That’s a lot of trees.

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Who can resist a big pink bottle brush tree and a glittery tree?

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Trees included on a little vignette.

Another one of my Christmas collections are these little nesting dolls.  Have you every seen the part of Sesame Street that is animated and they take the Russian nesting dolls apart and put them together?  I loved that little part, and so have always loved nesting dolls.  I collected quite a few of these Christmas ones over the years.  Unfortunately, I have not been able to find any in the past few years, but maybe some day I will find another one to add to my collection.

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Nesting Santas.

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More nesting Santas.

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Nesting Christmas trees (notice the tie in with both collections).

Finally, is my collection of elves.  My grandpa had all of these little elves that he used to hide all over the house, and when my cousins and I would visit, we would have to try and find as many as we could.  Those elves were tricky.  Some of them would be hanging from the light fixture or hiding on a shelf.  Others would be right in the open.  As we got older, the elves found more unique places to hide.  This was the original Elf on a Shelf before there was such a thing.  The elves were part of a promotion with Joy dish detergent.  My grandma must have bought a lot of Joy dish detergent because my grandpa seemed to have a lot of elves.

I loved those elves so much that I started to add to my grandpa’s collection.  I gave him a few for Christmas over the years.  At some point, after my grandpa had died, my grandma gave me two of the original elves and the ones that I had gifted to him.  I love this collection because it brings back that fun childhood memory.  And I’m sure if any of my cousins are reading, they are remembering that too.

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This is a naughty elf, partying on the bar cart with a menehune man.

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Just hanging out, looking for something to read.

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This guy is stored  in his own shoebox with my eight-year old printing reading on the side “Grandpa’s Head Elf.”  I guess the other one is his girlfriend.  He has the power so he gets all of the girls.

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Keeping time.

 

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A paper mache elf.

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I just found this little elf fairy this past weekend to sit on my window sill.

Do you collect any decorative items, Christmas or otherwise?  Hope you are getting in the Christmas spirit.  –June

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Peppermint Bark

Now that we’re fully immersed into the hustle and bustle of the holiday season, you may find yourself making the social rounds to office parties, neighborhood get togethers, and friends and family gatherings. You may be hosting one as well. So I thought I would share an incredibly easy holiday treat that’s yummy, festive, and travels well. Today is all about peppermint bark.

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I love making peppermint bark this time of year. It looks beautiful on a tray as an accompaniment to christmas cookies, as well as on a plate served up as a little after dinner treat. You can also put a batch in a cellophane bag, tie it with a pretty ribbon, and give it as a hostess gift. The best part is it’s so simple, yet it looks like it took a lot of effort.

Ingredients:

12 oz. semi-sweet chocolate (chopped)

12 oz. white chocolate (chopped)

crushed candy canes (about 1 cup)

1/2 tsp. peppermint extract (divided)

Line a 9 x 9 inch baking dish with wax paper or parchment. Melt semi-sweet chocolate in a double boiler until melted. If you don’t have a double boiler, you can melt the chocolate in the microwave, stirring every 30 seconds until melted.  Make sure you use good quality chocolate. I usually use Ghiradelli, but Baker’s brand works well too. Mix in 1/4 teaspoon of peppermint extract, pour melted chocolate into prepared pan, and let cool. You want the chocolate to be completely cooled, otherwise the two chocolates will blend together when you add the white. Melt the white chocolate, mix in 1/4 teaspoon peppermint extract, and layer on top of the semi-sweet. Gently press candy cane chunks into the chocolate, and place in the fridge for about 45 minutes. Once the candy has hardened, lift the wax paper or parchment out of the pan, and break the candy into pieces (like peanut brittle).  If there’s any leftover, it can be stored in a covered container.

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Enjoy!

~May

 

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Christmas Time in Chicago

Happy Friday everyone! The holidays are upon us and in keeping with the spirit of the season, May and June thought it would be fun to take a field trip and share with you a little of the beautiful city of Chicago at Christmas time. Even though we’re not fans of the cold, there is something magical about the city during this time of year that makes us  forget about our cold noses and numb toes. (It snowed today too!!) There are twinkle lights everywhere, beautiful store windows, and the Magnificent Mile in Chicago is something special to behold.

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The Palmer House 

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State Street Macy’s (formerly Chicago’s iconic Marshall Field’s)

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This year’s holiday windows  at Macy’s are celebrating the 50 year anniversary of Peanuts.

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Of course the famous Christmas tree in Macy’s Walnut Room.

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Even the tour buses get into the holiday spirit.

While we were out walking, we came upon the beautiful Peninsula Hotel Chicago, which is known for having one of the best lounges in the city.

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The Peninsula Hotel (We loved Mr. Foo Dog all decked out for the holidays.)

We were drawn in and knowing that it was 5 o’clock somewhere, decided to conduct a little May Meets June business “meeting” with a glass of champagne and some light snacks next to a cozy fire.

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 This stop was totally spontaneous which made it more fun. We also had our picture taken in Santa’s chair. (It must have been his day off.)

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Enjoy your weekend!

~May and June

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The Holiday

Christmas Movies

It’s that time of year again, the time to start watching Christmas movies.  My dream is to spend a whole day laying on the couch watching Christmas movies.  Unfortunately, December is so busy that this almost never happens.  However, I do try to make sure I watch a few of my favorites before the season is over.  And have you noticed that if a favorite Christmas movie “magically” shows up on TV, rather than watching one on a DVD or a streaming service, it seems so much better.

There are so many Christmas movies that it is hard to pick an absolute favorite, but some of my favorites include:

 

Elf

I love Buddy the Elf.  Despite being at least 6 feet tall, Buddy recently discovers that he is not in fact an elf.  So he goes on an adventure to New York City to find his real father.  There are so many classic lines that are easily remembered such as “Son of a Nutcracker.”  And there are four food groups, “Candy, Candy Canes, Candy Corn and Maple Syrup.”  The movie is full of fun but also has a sweet message about keeping the Christmas spirit.

Grinch

The Grinch is another one that I love.  Not the movie the Grinch (I actually find that one creepy) but the original cartoon Grinch.  The Grinch is so mean in the beginning (and I feel sorry for his dog), but the transformation he goes through is remarkable.  And I have to admit I always get a little choked up when the Who’s down in Whoville go sing in the town square despite the fact that the Grinch stole all of their presents including the Roast Beast.

Love Actually

This is maybe not really a Christmas movie (or at least I tell myself that since I watch it year-round) but it does take place at Christmas and it is about all the different kinds of love.  There are several somewhat interconnected stories that take place in the movie.  Hugh Grant as the Prime Minister is not to be missed.  And Colin Firth’s love story shows that connections can be real even if you do not speak the same language.

Christmas Vacation

 

The Griswolds are at it again.  They are going to have the best Griswold Christmas ever.  This means driving hours to pick out the perfect Christmas tree (a light shines on it so they know that it is the “one”).  Putting up way too many Christmas lights and kidnapping Clark’s boss.  With all of the antics and mishaps they still manage to have a wonderful Christmas.

 

Charlie Brown

I just saw the Charlie Brown Christmas turned 50 years old.  Charlie Brown of course can never do anything right.  He picks out a terrible Christmas tree and gets no Christmas cards.  Linus reminds us of the true meaning of Christmas with his beautiful recitation of the Christmas story.  In the end, Charlie Brown’s friends fix up the poor little tree so that it is a pretty tree.

Fred Claus

Vince Vaughn is Nick (Santa) Claus’ brother, Fred Claus.  Because he has lived in the shadows of his famous older brother, Fred thinks he is not good enough and never does anything right with his life.  Fred ends up helping his brother save Christmas from being shut down by an efficiency expert.  There is a lot of cute humor, from Fred going to talk therapy with the not-so-famous siblings of other famous people (Sylvester Stallone’s brother, Frank Stallone, Bill Clinton’s brother, Roger Clinton and the least famous Baldwin brother, Steven Baldwin) to Fred getting tired of the same Christmas music being played in the workshop and tries to shake things up a bit.

Miracle on 34th Street

A classic, although I do like the version from the 1990s as well.  The movie proves that a man, Kris Kringle, who is working at Macy’s as Santa, is the real Santa Claus.  I think I have always liked this movie because my mom told me that the real Santa Claus was at the Marshall Fields on State Street in Chicago.  So I think this movie just played into that belief I had.  Plus at the end, Susan has the best Christmas ever.

I know there are so many other Christmas movies and everyone has a favorite.  What Christmas movies are your favorite? –June

 

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