Skip to main content


❅ Blogstice ❅ - Winter Tag 2018

Created by ELLDUCLOS, but I lifted it from Emily Aagaard - this is The Winter Tag 2018

1. What is your favorite holiday tradition?
I enjoy baking this time of year, so my favorite tradition is trying a new cookie recipe every year. Last year I made gingerbread (from scratch!) on my own and this year I think I want to do something a little more vegan, just to be more inclusive and challenge myself to go outside my norms.
2. What is your favorite winter scent?
I love anything that smells like pine or spruce. Frosted, icy or cool scents are always welcome and offset all the warm and spicy smells of the holidays.
3. What is your favorite winter go-to fashion trend?
I get cold very easily, so for me it would have to be scarves. The bulkier and cozier the better!
4. What is your all-time favorite holiday movie?
Die Hard. It's the only Christmas film that matters. Fight me.
5. What is your favorite all-time holiday tune?
I prefer secular holiday tunes over anything religious, but I absolutel…
Recent posts

πŸŽ… Blogstice πŸŽ… - Why Are Christmas Colors Red and Green?

Did you know that Santa's robes were not always depicted as red and white? 
Did you know that Holly and its association with the winter holidays dates back further than Jesus?

Jump back in time with me for a moment and let's have a look at some Victorian era Christmas Cards, shall we? What do you notice?

The depiction we have in our heads of Santa Claus being a jolly old man in a fur-trimmed red suit is actually a relatively modern one. In 1931, Coca-Cola hired an artist to create an image of Santa Claus. This was hardly the first time a company had created their own spin on the beloved winter character, but Coke's ad campaign and marketing scheme that year was so successful that the image stuck - forever cementing together the red and white of a Coca-Cola bottle (or can) and our beloved Santa Claus.

Up until that point, depictions of Santa Claus were never consistent. Sometimes he was a tall, thin man in blue (as seen above) and sometimes he was a squat Jultomten that more…

*Blogstice* - Lowertown's European Christmas Market

"The European Christmas Market in St. Paul is a free event based on the traditional, charming, and festive open-air Christkindlmarkts that spring up in Germany, Austria, and other countries during the Advent season. Shop for unique, handmade holiday gifts and decorations from local vendors, drink GlΓΌhwein (spiced mulled wine), and taste European inspired food and delicacies during the first two weekends in December." -- St Paul Christmas Market

I have lived in or near St Paul, MN for a good number of years now, but I had never visited the Christmas Market down at Union Depot in the Lowertown neighborhood of the city. This year, I decided to remedy that.

I was not expecting the crowds.

From inside Union Depot, the Christmas Market looked like a packed can of sardines - wall to wall people - all cramming together between each stand to shop and eat. They shuffled forward slowly, like zombies, not generating nearly enough body heat to ward off the 23° F temperature.

And for some rea…

πŸŽ„ Blogstice πŸŽ„ - Unusual Tree Toppers

When you think of holiday "tree toppers" - what springs to mind? Glittering stars, festive ribbons, and porcelain angels likely burst forth. I came across a forum topic recently in which there was a discussion about tree toppers and the most unique ones that had ever been used or witnessed...

Which got me could do something pretty creative with the top of a holiday tree if you wanted to, right?

I decided to open up a new tab and Google away. This is what I found:

πŸŽ„ Honorable Mention/Personal Favorite πŸŽ„

What is the strangest thing you've ever seen at the top of a Christmas/Holiday tree? Would you use any of these?

❇Blogstice❇ - Yuletide Cocktail Recipe

Cranberry and gin pair like red wine and cheese - at least to me. Something about the tangy tartness of bright red cranberries and the frosty spruce aroma of gin seem to scream "It's Christmas!"

So here is my take on a cranberry-gin fusion with this magical Yuletide Cocktail:

❇❇❇❇❇❇❇❇❇ You Will Need:

 Cranberry Juice Gin (I recommend Bombay Sapphire) St. Germain (or another elder-flower liquor) Ice Cubes Garnish of your choice

You Will Do:
Fill a tumbler glass with ice. Pour in equal parts gin and cranberry juice. Add just a splash of elder-flower liquor. Garnish with a sprig of mint, a few cranberries or a lemon wedge.

Adjust quantities to taste.*


Let me know in the comments - are you a fan of gin or do you prefer vodka? If you do not consume alcohol, what are your favorite holiday drinks?

☃Blogstice☃ - Top 5 Holiday Movies

There are some holiday films that are classic and then some that are...classic. Like these five, that deviate a little from the standard Christmas film list you might find on the internet, but they're my favorites. Because what are the holidays without a little grit, a little blood, and maybe a jump-scare or two?

1. Die Hard - "Ho ho ho now I have a machine gun."

2. Gremlins - Don't feed them after midnight. Keep 'em out of the pool, too!

3. How The Grinch Stole Christmas - Boris Karloff's version is the only acceptable one.

4. Home Alone - "Merry Christmas, ya filthy animal."

5. Planes, Trains, and Automobiles - Flying in for Christmas? Classic disaster trope.

☃ What is your favorite Holiday or Christmas film? 

I Won NaNoWriMo 2018!!!

I won NaNoWriMo - it really happened. 

At approximately noon on November 30th, 2018, I validated my word count at 50, 289 words. 

On some logical, rational level I always knew I'd be able to do it. I managed to stick to my guns and do a little bit of writing every single day. Some days I managed to pound out 3,000 words and some days I wrote maybe a small paragraph or two. But I wrote every single day.

I also participated in some the NaNo chats on Twitter - particularly #NaNoWineO - and all the encouragement and support I found there was amazing and just so inspiring. I'm really glad I took on the NaNo challenge this year and took advantage of such a wonderful community of writers.

But it's not over for me. My novel isn't finished at 50k and I have a long way to go before I'm done. But the pressure's off now and I can take my time throughout December to work on my book as inspiration strikes.

Then come revisions, editing, and proofreading. Wash, rinse, repeat.