Getting in the Christmas Spirit with the CBC Harbour Lights Campaign

One of my favourite Christmas traditions is getting up at 5 AM and heading to the Saint John City Market for the CBC Saint John's Information Morning team's annual Harbour Lights show. All proceeds raised from the show go to feed hungry families in Southern New Brunswick. We have been going to the Harbour Lights show for the past ten years and there is nothing like gathering in the pre-dawn hours as a community to help raise money for those in need. This year, radio host Hance Colburne … [Read more...]

Real or Artificial Tree ~ Which is the Greener Choice?

Real or Artificial Tree? Which is the Greener Choice? You may be surprised by the answer. For many years, I felt guilty buying a real tree. I felt I was, in essence, killing a living thing and depleting a much-needed natural resource.  Deep down I knew most if not all tree growers practiced a one out, one in system to make sure there is a constant supply of trees, but still, I was racked with guilt. Every Dec 26th as I drove by the abandoned tree lots and gazed upon the unwanted and … [Read more...]

Is it Christmas or Excess? Try the Want-Need-Wear-Read Philosophy of Gift Giving

Christmas has always been, by far, my favourite time of the year. The Christmas “season”, yes, aptly named because it’s far more than just a single day, is the only time of year we all share a joint purpose. It’s like some unwritten contract that we have all have signed, promising to be more charitable, appreciative, tolerant and most of all, nicer to each other. It’s funny, but when I think about Christmas, my thoughts are never about gifts, either given or received. My memories always … [Read more...]

35 Amazing Christmas Treats You Will Love to Make

One of my favourite activities during the Christmas holidays is baking.  Back when I was first married, my mom and I started a tradition of getting together for a day long baking session. At the end of the day we each had tins full of cookies, squares and other holiday treats! Early in the morning, I would put on a big pot of coffee and apple cider, haul out some baking supplies, clear counter space and pop in some Christmas tunes.  My mom would arrive at my house early in the morning with … [Read more...]

Potato & Bread Dressing (Stuffing)

Your senses have a fabulous way of erasing the years.  Listening to music from your high school or university days has the power to transport you back in time.  The same is true for smell and taste.  You cannot sniff the heavenly aroma of  spiced apple cider and not think of Thanksgiving and  Christmas. What about the taste of eggnog, shortbread cookies or cranberries...the same thing. One of the ultimate time erasing tastes and smells for me, is that of homemade dressing.  I cannot smell … [Read more...]

Cranberry Pistachio Bark ~ A Little Piece of Heaven!

The first time I had this little piece of heaven on a plate, that is Cranberry Pistachio Bark, I fell totally in love!  It was about 15 years ago and a colleague of mine had brought in a tin of this luscious ambrosia during the holidays. After stuffing a couple (OK, a few) pieces of this food of the gods into my mouth I knew I needed to have the recipe. Thankfully, my kind co-worker readily agreed and quickly gave me the recipe from memory.  Yes, it is that easy that you really don't even … [Read more...]

Breakfast Bake {Recipe}

I make this Breakfast Bake for just about every special occasion we celebrate (also known as Christmas Morning "Wife" Saver, but I call it Christmas Morning "Husband" Saver!) Christmas, Easter, overnight guests, brunch, when we are in the mood for this easy dish I will whip it up.  It is a "go to" dish in our home and once you make it, will soon become a standard in your home too! Perfect served with cut up juice or fresh fruit, cinnamon rolls and lots of freshly brewed coffee! 5.0 … [Read more...]

Watch as NORAD Tracks Santa!!

On December 24, 2012, NORAD is using Cesium and Bing Maps to show Santa's route . The 2D tracker works on all browsers. The 3D experience requires a web browser that supports WebGL, such as Chrome or Firefox. To see if your browser is supported, open the Cesium Viewer. If you see a 3D globe, your browser will be able to track Santa in 3D on December 24 by visiting the Track Santa page on www.noradsanta.org. … [Read more...]

The 2nd Annual Christmas Tree Link-Up

The 2nd Annual Christmas Tree Link-Up ~ I don't know about everyone else, but I love seeing other people's trees.  I love looking at how they are decorated, I love the ornaments, the garland and how everyone personalizes their own tree, in their own way. Last year, I thought why not create a LINKY where we could all visit each others beautiful trees. … [Read more...]

Do you prepare a Nativity Tray?

A week from today is Christmas Eve and I want to share with you a relatively new tradition in our home.  I think this Christmas Eve will be our tenth year to prepare a Nativity Tray, which is a medieval English custom. I first read about it in, Simple Abundance by Sarah Ban Breathnach.  I thought it was such a wonderful thing to do and to me, it epitomizes the spirit of, "good-will toward men".  If you have the Simple Abundance book you can read all about the Nativity Tray on the … [Read more...]