A little peek into our Christmas

It’s hard to believe that this time last week I was using the last of my laptop battery to charge up my iPhone in the midst of the ice storm. It seemed that Christmas as we know it in my family – Christmas Eve at my place, midnight mass down the street, Christmas Day at my Nonna’s – wouldn’t happen and that tens of thousands would remain without power well into the next weekend.

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As it turns out, we got our power back late Monday afternoon, but the last of Torontonians still going without should have their power restored by later on tonight. We were lucky enough to stay warm thanks to our gas fireplace and two working gas burners. Chloe had the right idea in her Hudson’s Bay striped sweater and prime position by the fireplace.

Here’s a little peek at our Christmas celebrations

Holiday Beauty:

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I’d been keeping the Revlon by Marchesa 3D Nail Appliqués in Crown Jewels for a special occasion and knew they’d be the perfect way to dress up my Christmas red. Although trimming the appliqués to fit as tips was a little tedious, the result was so worth it! If you can still find the appliqués, I suggest picking up a bunch and stashing them.

Since Mom was going to be in the kitchen all day (more on that in a sec), she threw her hair up in a ponytail and asked me to curl the pony to make it a bit more festive. Obviously I couldn’t let that happen and decided to give her the prettiest little fishtail braid, teasing the crown to give her some needed volume. Want to give the fishtail a try? Lauren Conrad’s video tutorial makes it the easiest thing ever.

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The Decor:

In case you’re curious about who is the most excited on Christmas in my house, it’s Chloe.

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She has a serious fixation with the tree and everything under it and has graduated from only being able to open gifts wrapped in tissue paper to ripping open boxes covered in wrapping paper…whether they have her name on them or not.

Since this was our first Christmas since getting engaged, I commemorated the occasion with a Starbucks ornament DIY’d with our engagement date.

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My obsession with milestones and holidays is no secret amongst my group of friends and no one knows this better than my university roommate Kathleen. She took many a trip to the local Dollarama with me to decorate for each and every holiday so I shouldn’t have been surprised that she sent me the most perfect ornament ever to celebrate our first engaged Christmas.

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Little did she know I’d been frantically searching the Christmas store for an “engaged” ornament on our recent trip out to Collingwood to no success. And yes, if you think our tree looks a little brown…it is. It suffered an untimely and crunchy death a few days before Christmas. If anything, it served as motivation to haul it out to the curb a few weeks earlier than usual 😉

The Traditions:

We’ve been hosting Christmas Eve for 13 years now – ever since we moved into our current home. Our holiday table always looks pretty much the same and always includes some treats to enjoy after (OK, during if you’re me) dinner. This year? Delicious golden Ferrero Rocher chocolates. I like to think I planted the seed in my mom’s head after the brand sent along some of the gilded treats earlier this holiday season.

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Also a tradition: tons and tons of fish. Santa’s keeping guard, but he doesn’t have to worry about me – I’m maintaining my title of Worst Italian Ever (see: super pale skin) with my aversion to most seafood. On the menu for Christmas Eve: shrimp, calamari, “baccala”, smelts, lobster tails, stuffed shrimp and seafood sauce with pasta.

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My favourite food on Christmas Eve? This delicious pasta sauce we pick up from Bologna. And chocolate. Namely the Fererro Rochers that are scattered around my house like little Christmas Easter eggs. I’m not a huge chocolate girl, but I can’t resist these crunchy, creamy little morsels…especially the coconut variety.

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The whole family comes, including Kiki – Chloe’s cousin.

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The Gifts:

What you see before you is Chloe sussing out what’s hers under the tree. She’s got her eye on that tissue paper-wrapped package. Don’t ask us how, but she knows exactly what is hers. Can dogs smell toys? 😉

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This marked the first year that my brother actually liked what we bought him – a Christmas miracle! Can you spot the two gifts in the photo below? One was my brainchild.

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Speaking of gifts – I was really spoiled this year. My parents got me the Chanel earrings I’d been eyeing along with a few cold-weather essentials for the Winter Classic and a certain candle from my gift guide. Mike got me a pair of ruby earrings custom-made for me that mirrored a pair we’d found antiquing once but never purchased and the Frends Layla headphones I’ve been coveting since I first saw them on Oscar PR girl’s Instagram feed. Swoon!

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I hope you had the most wonderful of holidays with your family and can’t wait to count down to 2014 with you!

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Bonus: that kitty up there is Gastby. He looks how I felt after Christmas dinner.

 

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