2017 in photos

Good afternoon everyone, I’ve seen a few people post their year in pictures, and I really wanted to do it too!! So, here’s my year in pictures.


January

 

February

March

April

May

June

  

July

August

September

 

October

 

November

December

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A Review of “A Christmas Prince”

Hi everyone! Today’s Blogmas post is a review of the Netflix original “A Christmas Prince.” So many people have been debating watching it because it’s not an ‘original’ Christmas movie. However, I figured I would watch that 92-minute movie to see how it ranked.

For those of you who haven’t heard of the movie, straight from Netflix comes this brief synopsis: “Christmas comes early for an aspiring young journalist when she’s sent abroad to get the scoop on a dashing prince who’s poised to be king.” I don’t want to give anything else away so you’ll all have to watch the movie for yourselves to see what happens with that journalist and the prince. 😉

Pros:

  • Ben Lamb (Prince Richard) is a cutie
  • most of the actors  in the movie I’d never heard of so it’s always nice to see new people playing bigger roles
  • Princess Emily and Amber’s relationship is so cute
  • ROMANCE!!
  • A plot twist I actually wasn’t expecting
  • The cliche

Cons:

  • Lady Sophia and Simon are so annoying (but what is a cliche movie with no annoying people)
  • That period of time where shit hits the fan and you have 10 minutes to resolve
  • The cliche

Overall Review: Overall, I adored this movie. I am a sucker for a cliche but if you aren’t you’ll probably hate it. It sort of reminded me of a Christmas Ella Enchanted just without the violence. I really liked the plot twist in the movie (that I will not share) and it was just overall a very cute and sweet movie. I’d say a 9/10 from me tbh.

Until next time

Alicia

A guide to “Secret Santa”

Hi everyone, still going strong with my Blogmas posts. Today’s Blogmas post is all about giving a successful Secret Santa gift and some tips and tricks I use to try to give the best Secret Santa gift ever!!

  1. Plan it out. Normally Secret Santa presents are supposed to be under a certain amount of money so make sure you budget for what you’re going to buy instead of going crazy the second you walk into the store. Nothing is worse than receiving a gift that is way above (or below) the budget. Plan accordingly.
  2. Talk to the person’s friends (if you know them) or try to learn more about them- Even though Secret Santas are usually among friend groups I almost always get the person I know the least. I try to go through their social media accounts to try and find out some of their favorite things and ask their friends as well for things they like to make sure the person receiving the gift really loves what they’re getting
  3. Try to make it festive- I always like making my Secret Santa gifts festive. Whether I throw in a pair of Christmas socks, hot chocolate mix or a scarf and gloves because I know I personally love opening gifts filled with holiday items because they really make me feel in the Christmas spirit
  4. Avoid funny gifts unless you know the person really well and know their sense of humor. While you may think the gift is funny the person on the receiving end may take the joke the wrong way and some hard feelings may occur.
  5. Gift receipt- Always place the gift receipt in the gift when it’s apparel. Whether it’s the wrong size or a color the recipient doesn’t enjoy, you want them to enjoy the gift, not for it to sit in the bottom of a drawer for the next 5 years.

Are there any other tips you have for Secret Santa gift giving?

Alicia

Stocking stuffer ideas

T-minus 3 days until Christmas and there are still many people at malls running around picking up some last minute gifts. I feel like with all the commotion with getting the bulk of the gifts we tend to forget about the stocking stuffers. Those are always some of my favorites gifts to receive because they are usually the first I open and it’s always fun to see what ‘Santa’ puts in them. Here are a few random ones that you can usually find in most stores and some pretty close to check out.

1. Silly Putty- Always a classic and anyone f any age will enjoy this timeless gift
2. iTunes gift card- Any music lover will love this gift card.. 10 new songs here they come
3. Hair ties- More of a girl gift, however, any human with long hair will thank you for this
4. Uno cards- Another timeless gift that any person of any age will love. Uno cards would be a hit on Christmas day
5. Chapstick- With the dry winter air there is not a soul on this earth who couldn’t use some chapstick
6. Slinky- More of a gift for a younger receiver, however, slinkys were and are such fun toys. Before everyone was glued to a screen for the whole day slinkys could be hours of fun
7.Slippers- Slippers are a great way to keep warm in the winter months.
8.Tumbler- These are super cute and they can be personalized so everyone can drink water and look good doing it
9. Christmas socks- These are pretty self-explanatory because who doesn’t love a fuzzy pair of warm Christmas socks?

My ugly Christmas sweater collection

Hello everyone, I have been one to talk about my love of ugly Christmas sweaters, and I figured I’d also share the ones I have. I only have 3 of my own at the moment but I’m certain my collection will grow. So, here’s my collection and a backstory behind each of them.


Let it Glow- The most recent Christmas sweater purchase and the most ‘fun’ one. This light up sweater was a hit at a few parties over the past few weeks and I love to dazzle the crowds with the color changing lights.


Shrek Christmas- This sweater was a gift from Santa 😉 last Christmas. After receiving Shrek and Donkey pillow pets the year before, I guess the tradition had t continue. This sweater is actually really comfortable and if there wasn’t a lifesize Ogre head on it I’d love to wear it regularly.


Homemade Sweater- I’ve discussed this sweater in posts before so I’ll keep this one short and sweet. My entire family slaved over the sweater for hours trying to make me the perfect ugly Christmas sweater. Let me say, this one is always a big hit for everyone who sees it

 

Do you have any funny Christmas sweaters?

Alicia

My Christmas traditions

Hi everyone, continuing with my Blogmas posts today and today I will be talking about some Christmas traditions I have. I always felt like I don’t have any but after talking about what to do in Chicago for Christmas I’ve realized that I do have a few traditions of my own and here they are!

 

  1. Christkindlmarket- Every year (not the past two because of bad schedules however my family has kept going) my family and some family friends head to the city to have breakfast at 7th on Heaven and then walk over to the Christkindlmarket. The adults always get hot wine (tastes like garbage) and we all love the Sweet Shoppe which has an abundance of German candies, truffles, and nuts. It is normally very cold so we try to keep it short and sweet. This year, however, it was 50 degrees on the day we went so we were able to spend longer and make it more enjoyable
  2. Holiday lights- This tradition is a hit or miss for my family. We usually get there every other to every 3 years but when we do it’s so much fun. The Brookfield Zoo has Holiday Magic every year during the month of December and it’s so cool seeing all the lights littering the Zoo along with taking some cute pictures and spending quality time in the cold with friends and family
  3. Ugly sweaters- This was a tradition just started 2 years ago but each year I have received an ugly Christmas sweater… I bought one this year for myself so even if I don’t receive one as a gift I still added to the collection
  4. A weekend in Wisconsin- My mom’s best friend’s family and our family always go to Wisconsin for a weekend each winter break. No matter what else we have going on with works, friends, and family we almost always make time to see each other in the midst of the holiday craziness.

 

Those are my traditions, what are yours?

Alicia

Christmas events in Chicago

Hey everyone! If you’ve learned one thing about me it’s I love Christmas! Due to this I love doing Christmas related outings close to home! So…. I’ve decided to make a guide to Christmas events in Chicago and the surrounding area for myself and anyone else who lives here or is around for the holidays!!

  1.  The Christkindlmarket- This has been a bit of a Christmas tradition for my family for the past few years. We always buy the festive Holiday Cup (with either Gluhwein or hot chocolate in it), and candy from the Sweet Shoppe. It’s such a fun day for everyone involved despite all the crowds and below freezing temperatures
  2. The Museum of Science and Industry Christmas trees- If you ever want a lesson on world Christmases head on over to the Museum of Science and Industry. During the entire month of December (and a bit more) the main hall of the Museum is filled with Christmas tree decorated in the fashion of a Christmas from countries all over the world. It is a beautiful sight to see and it’s so much fun learning about different celebrations from around the world.
  3. Ice Skating at Maggie Daley Park– This one is not something I have ever done or will ever do (I am terrified of ice skating but that’s a story for another day) but this is something that so many people love doing. Lacing up your ice skates with some friends or a significant other (barf) and skating the ribbon around Maggie Daley park is always a day of frozen butt fun (or so I hear)
  4. Zoo Lights- Whether you go to the Brookfield Zoo or Lincoln Park Zoo (I have only ever gone to the Brookfield Zoo lights since it’s 5 minutes from my house) the holiday lights are always so incredible. I always wonder how expensive their electiricity bills are because of the sheer amount of lights that are placed on trees, bushes, and even in te sky.
  5. The Art Institute Wreathing of the Lions- This actually already happened but for next year, the day after Thanksgiving hundreds of people  gather across from the Musuem(and even on Michigan Avenue) to watch the Wreathing of the Lions. The lions outside of the Art Institute are sort of a symbol of Chicago and when they are adorned with wreaths the entire city just gets in the holiday spirit

What are some holiday events in your city?

Alicia